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Taylor Swift tops Forbes’ list of the top-paid musicians of 2016

Photo: John Shearer/LP5/Getty

Last week, it was announced that Taylor Swift will be getting her very own 24-hour cable channel to offset the noise of the failing media. How will Taylor Swift NOW! churn up enough Taylor Swift content to fill a 24-hour cycle? Well, in a bind, they could always just cut to a livestream of Swift swimming Scrooge McDuck-style through her money. According to Forbes, Swift was the highest-paid musician of 2016, breaking the Rolling Stones’ North American touring record, selling millions of albums, and adding huge endorsements like Keds, Diet Coke, and Apple, which all helped lead to the top-paid year of her career. During the Forbes scoring period, she pulled in $170 million, which makes her not only the top-paid musician, but also the highest-paid celebrity of any kind in the world.

She’s fittingly followed by her ex’s band, One Direction. The group, which is the top-earning boy band of all time, is currently on hiatus. But they started out the year by making it rain without Zayn on their On The Road Again tour, pulling in $110 million. Adele, meanwhile, came in third with $80.5 million, with actual recorded music making up the bulk of her income, which sets her apart from the rest of the top-paid musicians. Madonna is fourth, with $76.5 million from her Rebel Heart tour and lots of perfume and clothing deals. Rihanna finishes out the top five with her $75 million from big live-music totals as well as deals with Dior, Puma, Samsung, and Stance. But the rankings aren’t even close with $wift in the mix, and the dawn of Taylor Swift NOW! only means more money in her coffers.


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