The Throne took the throne this past year when it came to hip-hop’s top earners, according to former Forbes journalist Zack O’Malley Greenburg.
Jay-Z and the artist formerly known as Kanye West topped Greenburg’s list (as shared by Vibe) of the highest paid hip-hop acts of 2021, earning a reported $470 million and $250 million, respectively. Diddy placed behind them at $75M, with Drake raking in $50M during his Certified Lover Boy run.
Hov’s latest victory comes as a result of Tidal and Armand de Brignac champagne deals, while Ye’s second-place finish amid his Donda era is mostly thanks to the success of his Yeezy shoes. Greenburg gave Rolling Stone the same estimate for Jay and Yeezy back in January, with the only musician placing between them on that list being Paul Simon ($260 million), and the only artist above them being Bruce Springsteen ($590M).
As for the current rap-focused list, Diddy’s third-place finish was a result of similar outside deals like his Ciroc vodka line, while DJ Khaled locked in an impressive $35 million thanks to Pandora and Dolce & Gabbana partnerships.
Also featured are Tech N9ne, who secured an impressive digital-only catalog deal, and Wiz Khalifa, who saw more momentum with his Khalifa Kush cannabis. Doja Cat is the only woman featured on the list, in a tie for No. 10 with Tech and Birdman, thanks to partnerships with Pepsi, CandyCrush, and more.
Check out the full list of hip-hop’s reported top earners for 2021 below:
No. 10 (tie): Birdman – $25 million
No. 10 (tie): Doja Cat – $25 million
No. 10 (tie): Tech N9ne – $25 million
No. 9: J Cole – $27 million
No. 8: Eminem – $28 million
No. 7: DJ Khaled – $35 million
No. 6: Travis Scott – $38 million
No. 5: Wiz Khalifa – $45 million
No. 4: Drake – $50 million
No. 3: Diddy – $75 million
No. 2: Kanye West – $250 million
No. 1: Jay-Z – $470 million