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Eric Church, Dolly Parton and More Among 2017’s Highest-Paid Country Stars

Eric Church highest paid country stars
Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Garth Brooks might sit at No. 26 on 2017’s list of highest-paid celebrities in the world, but within country music, he’s No. 1. Brooks isn’t the only country star making big bucks this year, though: Forbes magazine recently released its 2017 list of the highest-paid country stars, and fans will certainly recognize these names.

On Forbes‘ 2017 list of the world’s highest-paid country musicians, Brooks holds the lead thanks to his $60 million in income over the last 12 months, while No Shoes Nation leader Kenny Chesney sits at No. 2 with $42.5 million in income. At No. 3 is Luke Bryan, who cleared $42 million thanks to both his musical career and endorsements.

At No. 4 among the world’s highest-paid country stars of 2017 is Dolly Parton, who made $37 million in part due to her Dollywood theme park enterprise. Tied for No. 5 are Florida Georgia Line and Toby Keith ($34.5 million), and at No. 7 is Jason Aldean ($32.5 million). The No. 8 spot belongs to Blake Shelton and the $31.5 million he earned thanks to his music, his vodka brand and his spot on The Voice, while Keith Urban sits at No. 9; he did pretty okay this year, raking in $30 million.

Finally, tied for 10th place on this Forbes list are the Zac Brown Band and Eric Church; they both made a sweet $25 million this year. In total, Forbes reports, this year’s Top 10 country earners made $366 million — down from the $393 million that 2016’s Top 10 generated. However, only five country acts made more than $30 million in 2016, versus nine who made that amount or more this year.

Forbes calculates its list of the world’s highest-paid country stars of 2017 by looking at Pollstar’s touring numbers and Nielsen’s record sales data; they also do independent research on outside business ventures and endorsements. The calculated numbers represent the period of June 1, 2016, through June 1, 2017; they are pre-tax numbers and do not deduct for manager, agent and lawyer fees.

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