It all starts with a bunch of kids rehearsing guitar in the garage. Next thing you know, they become gods of rock music, adored by crowds of thousands, who keep stuffing millions in their bank accounts.
While most of the rock legends on our list are well past their prime, the money they own allows them to appear immortal, ready for another decade or so of wild concerts, wilder after-parties, and all else their souls desire.
1. $220 million – Ozzy Osbourne
With a “modest” net worth of $220 million, Ozzy Osbourne is one of the richest rockers alive.
Ozzy started his career as the leading vocalist of heavy metal band Black Sabbath. In 1979, he switched to a much more acclaimed solo career. Throughout the two distinct periods, the artist sold more than 100 million albums, earning him a well-deserved nickname -“The Godfather of Metal.”
Despite having a tumultuous personal life of battling addictions, the Madman managed to stay in the limelight and booked a cozy spot into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, alongside other legendary performers. Despite such an honor, Osbourne did something considered by most rock fans completely inappropriate – he starred in a reality show alongside his family.
“The Osbournes” was one of the most watched series on MTV, granting the 68-year-old an intimate contact with younger generations other dinosaurs on our list could only dream of.
Can you guess who’s next on the list? They call him “the Mod.”
2. $235 million – Sir Rod Stewart
Sir Rod Steward is a rock star who doesn’t have to worry about his later days.
A musical career spanning decades garnished Rod’s bank accounts with $235 million. That’s enough to support even the most extravagant tastes, and good God we know the British singer has plenty of those.
Rod Stewart was knighted in 2016 for his incredible contribution to the music industry. With more than 100 million sold albums, the man nicknamed “Rod the Mod” dominated the UK and US charts with one hit single after another. That’s quite something for someone who started off in a band named The Hoochie Coochie Men!
Most of Rod Stewart’s wealth lies untouched, as the 72-year-old is notorious for being penny-pinching. Despite having an eyesight that reportedly deteriorated substantially over the last years, Stewart continues to buy supermarket specs, driving his ex-model wife insane.
Nevertheless, the music he writes shows no sign of compromising on quality.
The next page reveals another highly bankable rocker.
3. $250 million – Eric Clapton
Eric Clapton’s incredible chemistry with his guitar earned him a comfortable place among the richest rockers of today.
Dubbed “The Greatest Guitarist of All Time” by various critics, Clapton blended rock and blues, creating honey for the ears like “Layla,” “Crossroads,” and “Tears in Heaven.”
Clapton is the only man to be inducted three times into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and that’s not because they re-evaluated his talent. The 72-year-old first reached the A-list of his music genre as a solo artist. He returned as a member of the Yardbirds, and later Cream.
Eric “Slowhand” Clapton is known for putting his money to work as a genuine millionaire. The artist recently spent $5 million on a specially commissioned Ferrari 458. The Italian Scuderia was happy to give the model an EC label, which you can easily guess what it stands for.
Life was sweet with our next rich rocker.
4. $260 million – Phil Collins
There is no mystery to why Phil Collins is one of the richest rock musicians of 2017.
The English singer is best known as the drummer and lead singer of the rock band Genesis. He also embarked on a solo career starting with 1978, one that brought him the record of having the most US Top 40 singles of the 1980s.
With seven Grammy Awards, six Brit Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, and two Academy Awards, Collins managed to amass an incredible fortune – $260 million. That’s quite something for a man that always attracted the envy and criticism of his fellow musicians, on accounts that his tunes are too commercial.
Collins recently embarked on a live tour after a decade-long hiatus. Just to give himself a real motivation, the artist splashed a whopping $33 million on an Oceanside view Miami mansion.
Our next generous rocker on the list has a fabulous stage act, and everyone loves him.
5. $280 million – Dave Grohl
Dave Grohl is the coolest guy in rock, and we enjoyed his music in the past couple of decades.
From Nirvana to Foo Fighters, Grohl showed he could do two things pretty well – play the drums and voice some of the most hair-raising lyrics ever. The hundreds of millions of album sold are a testimony for his crucial role in the alternative rock post-grunge era.
What’s even more remarkable about Grohl is that he is a nice guy in real life. The 48-year-old stands in his league, putting a considerable distance between him and the tumultuous personal lives of other rock heavyweights.
Grohl quit marijuana by the age of 20, and his worst incident is a scooter DUI. Go ahead and compare it to the highly controversial death of fellow Nirvana member Kurt Cobain.
Check out how comfortably the next musician ended up rich after his former band split.
6. $290 million – Roger Waters
Roger Waters might not a name as heavy as other rockers on the list, and that’s mostly because his career was under the umbrella of Pink Floyd.
Waters co-founded one of the most commercially successful and influential groups in the history of modern music. He served as bassist, co-vocalist, and songwriter. Go ahead and thank him for spectacular albums like albums The Dark Side of the Moon (1973), Wish You Were Here (1975), and The Wall (1979).
The leader of Pink Floyd left the group in 1985 and engaged in a bitter lawsuit with the rest of the members. By that time, the rock band was already a money-making industry that would contribute generously to Waters’s $290 million fortune.
Roger Waters gave history books a good reason to remember him. Using his recently conquered rights over the Pink Floyd legacy, he went on to organize “The Wall – Live in Berlin,” an epic rock concert that celebrated the recent fall of the Berlin Wall.
The next wealthy rock star is less generous than you think!
7. $300 million – Sting
With Sting, we kick off the elite category of rockers with more than $300 million to their names.
Best known as the frontman of The Police, Sting followed the same blueprint you’ve seen so far and tried his luck with a solo career starting with 1985. His two periods combined resulted in more than 100 million albums sold. Could have gone it differently for the man that masterminded “Every Breath You Take?” Obviously not!
Sting lived up to his name and chose a stingy lifestyle over flashing his financial potency as your average rock star would do. Even worse, he decided not to pass the hundreds of millions to his children, forcing them to earn a living.
Sting’s formidable estate will most likely fund the many charities he pledged allegiance to, including the Rainforest Foundation Fund, aimed at conserving the last remaining equatorial habitats.
You would never have guessed how rich the next rock star is. Haters say he dresses like a clown on stage.
8. $300 million – Gene Simmons
Gene Simmons is another legend of rock music that accumulated a fortune.
Recognizing the 67-year-old in normal-looking clothes is hard. That is because fans are more familiar with the sight of Simmons impersonating The Demon.
With his painted face and hellish costume, the bass guitarist and co-lead singer of Kiss have always put up a show. Fire breathing, blood-spitting, and smoking guitars, those are just some of the stunts that delighted fans of hard rock and heavy metal.
The 67-year-old might not look good as new in those tight pants and metal armor, and some would say the heavy makeup is a bit too much. However, fans still buy Kiss albums, tickets, or memorabilia. It is was more than enough to make Gene Simmons and his fellow band members some of the wealthiest of the industry.
You can’t stay poor when everyone is singing your songs.
9. $300 million – Jon Bon Jovi
Jon Bon Jovi thrilled generation of music lovers with his catchy tunes, and that reflected into a generous bank account now totaling a whopping $300 million.
Founder and frontman of the rock band Bon Jovi, he became a rock symbol of the 1990s. The 55-year-old has now a more discreet and balanced stage presence, but that didn’t stop fans from flocking to his concerts.
Songs like “Runaway,” and “Livin’ on a Prayer” are hummed even by youngsters born too late to catch Rock while it was still alive. That helps the artist top the charts as one of the best paid, with concert fees and song royalties well into the realm of millions.
Can you imagine picturing John Bon Jovi singing “It’s My Life” in the shower? We certainly can, and he is using crisp $100 bills instead of towels.
Check out a less known star of rock music that has more money than your entire neighborhood.
10. $300 million – Dave Matthews
Dave Matthews might differ from the canonic image of a rock star, but his way of packing up the millions is enough for us to include him on the list.
Born in South Africa, Matthews left his home country for the US to avoid conscription into the military. His pacifist agenda allowed him to pursue his strong interest in music.
The Dave Matthews Band emerged as a blend of acoustic guitar, sax, and fiddle music. It would bring the artist and his collaborators one sold out concert after another and eventually a place amongst the millionaires.
Like other performers of his caliber, Dave Matthews felt like giving something back. He embraced activism, showing a weakness for the campaigned supporting family farms throughout the US. Farm Aid is an annual concert raising millions for the poor farmers that face foreclosure.
Your parents probably met while dancing on his music. Look at how far he is now!
11. $340 million – Keith Richards
Keith Richards is a monument of rock music and how he managed to harvest such an impressive wealth should be obvious.
Richards founded the Rolling Stones back in 1962 and stood alongside Mick Jagger as one of the most productive and enduring partnerships the world of rock has yet to see. Despite reaching the venerable age of 73, and looking like a rebellious grandpa, Keith is still active and draws in the crowd with his phenomenal guitar skills.
Many say that Keith Richards is the best guitarist ever. Songs where he plays the only guitar track like “Paint It Black,” and “Sympathy for the Devil” are a testimony to that.
With Keith, we enter the Pantheon of rock gods that had a fair share of trouble using drugs. Despite being busted on numerous occasions, the English performer is not shy about admitting he still needs hashish and cannabis to keep up with his busy schedule and stressful millionaire life.
On the next page, you will meet an American hero of rock music that speaks from the heart.
12. $350 million – Bruce Springsteen
Make way for “The Boss!”
Bruce Springsteen ranks as the only American millionaire rocker among an army of British stars that dominate the top of our list. The 67-year-old puts on display a formidable fortune that shows just how much you can earn from people’s addiction to quality music.
Springsteen recently ended “The River 2016 Tour,” impressive feet of force that brought in $268 million worldwide. How could you not love the star that often delights its fans with a 4-hour show?
“Born in the USA” and “Born to Run” are just of the titles that made Springsteen one of America’s favorite. Singing about the struggles of the working class and often referencing how he had to start from rock bottom, the rocker appeals to a far larger audience than anyone did before him.
Just to give you a scale let’s visit the fact that he sold more than 64 million records in the United States alone. Oh, and don’t forget he even won an Oscar in 1994 for “Streets of Philadelphia.”
Don’t leave just yet! We have plenty of rich musicians and an equal number of reasons for you to start listening to rock music.
13. $350 million – Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr knew how to exploit the never-ending Beatlemania, so he earned a well-deserved place on our list of richest rockers.
Although falling third behind more famous band members like John Lennon and Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr has much more things to receive credit for other than drumming. The other Beatles would let him sing lead vocals for one song per each album.
Ringo is the voice that gave us “With a Little Help from My Friends,” and “Yellow Submarine.” He even wrote songs, of which “Octopus’s Garden” is the most prominent.
With $350 million stuck on his name and much more coming his way from royalties, Ringo looks like a mobster rather than a man that should be thinking about retirement. It might shock you to know that the former Beatle is 76 now.
Check out another impressive fortune of the rock world!
14. $360 million – Sir Mick Jagger
Mick Jagger joins his colleague Keith Richards on the list of richest rockers.
The lead singer of the Rolling Stones is not shy about claiming to be one of the best-selling artists of all time. Jagger was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and knighted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Jagger was a colorful figure, fascinating and shocking the audience at the same time with wild displays that would make even today’s performers look like angels. His love-hate relationship with Keith Richards is well known and made its way into folklore.
A combination of touring, record sales, and royalties helped Jagger amass one of the biggest fortunes in the rock world. The 73-year-old occasionally pinched some extra bucks from minor movie roles and a less glorious solo career outside the Rolling Stones.
Despite what fans would normally expect from a man of his caliber, Jagger was never exceedingly generous. He backs few charities, and restaurant owners spread the rumor he is a lousy tipper.
His voice is too stunning to say “no” to buying an album.
15. $550 million – Sir Elton John
Elton John is not just one of the richest rockers. He is an industry!
The British singer, composer, and pianist has records that would make even today’s pop star jealous. Elton John sold a combined total of more than 300 million records, which means that almost 1 in 20 individuals on Earth own an album with his music (legally!)
It is hard to stop the praises when it comes to the phenomenon that was and continues to be, Elton John. His emotional tribute launched at the funeral of Princess Diana, “Candle in the Wind” grew to become the best-selling single in history in both the UK and the US. 33 million bought a copy!
Elton John joins Sting as another millionaire rocker that doesn’t want to pass the massive burden of an already-made fortune to his children.
The 70-year-old supported with generosity multiple charities and will continue to do so in the future. Elton John AIDS Foundation is an excellent example of how a millionaire can give back to the world.
Few musicians can take pride in being as successful as our next rockstar.
16. $700 million – Bono
Bono’s net worth gets our list annoyingly close to the realm of billions.
Paul David Hewson owes his fortune to the phenomenon he unleashed. U2 was one of the most influential names in rock, inspiring generations of future bands and granting Bono a demi-god position in fan mythology.
Bono made most of his money by selling records, touring the world, and sucking on those sweet-tasting royalties. Unlike most rock legends on our list, he did not settle with that. Bono signed up for the tumultuous world of business and now sees his interests spreading on a vast array of fields.
Bono has taken philanthropy quite seriously. Band Aid, Live Aid, and Project Red are just a few of the initiatives the Irish rockers signed up for throughout the last decades. Let’s hope he remembers to keep some of the money for himself.
Have a look at the richest rocker of 2017. Can you guess his name before clicking “next?”
17. $1.2 billion – Sir Paul McCartney
Sir Paul McCartney is the wealthiest rocker to date, a harsh reminder for the parents that grounded their kids for not cutting their hair and buying guitars.
The music industry is like a gold mine, and Paul McCartney proved to be one of the best at extracting most out of it. The bass guitarist and singer is one of the masterminds behind the Beatles craze that swept through the world some decades ago, and whose effects are still observable.
McCartney was skilled enough to turn the band’s breakup into a renewed chance for greatness. He embraced a solo career and had been touring ever since. Even at the age of 75, McCartney displays the same energy and appetite for work.
$1.2 billion apparently is not enough! McCartney filed a lawsuit court against Sony, seeking to reclaim ownership of his share of the Lennon–McCartney songs catalog.