72 year old Bruce Springsteen has been named the highest-paid musician of 2021, bringing in a reported sum of $590million (£431.3million) – most of which he earned via the landmark sale of his masters and publishing rights in December 2021. The singer sold his music rights to Sony Music Entertainment in what could be the biggest transaction ever struck for a single artiste’s catalogue. The deal is estimated at $550 million. “I am one artiste who can truly say that when I signed with Columbia Records in 1972, I came to the right place. During the last 50 years, the men and women of Sony Music have treated me with the greatest respect as an artist and as a person. I’m thrilled that my legacy will continue to be cared for by the company and people I know and trust,” Springsteen said in Sony’s statement. The agreement involves two separate deals – one for his recorded work and the other for his songwriting rights.
The only woman to make the cut on the list of highest-paid musicians in 2021 is Taylor Swift. The list — published by Rolling Stone — speaks a lot about the state of the music industry. For two years now, live gigs have dried up while musicians with substantial catalogues continue to make money. Also making the list are Jay-Z ($470 million), Paul Simon ($260 million), Kanye West ($250 million), Ryan Tedder ($200 million), Red Hot Chili Peppers ($145 million), Lindsey Buckingham ($100 million), Mötley Crüe ($95 million), Blake Shelton ($83 million), and Taylor Swift ($80 million).