Forbes Lists Hip-Hop’s Top Earners

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By Chris O'Shea

We’re big hip-hop fans here at FishbowlNY, so we greeted the new Forbes list of hip-hop’s top earners with great interest. The list – titled Cash Kings – accounts for earnings from May 2010 to May 2011, and measures the artist’s income from “record sales, digital downloads, films, merchandise sales, endorsements, books and other ventures.”

This year Brooklyn’s own Jay-Z topped the list, bringing in $37 million over the past year. He barely edged out Diddy, another New York native, who earned $35 million even though he’s never made a good song that didn’t include Biggie. Maybe people liked Loon after all. Kanye West rounds out the top three earners, raking in $16 million.

Check out the top 10 after the jump.

  1. Jay-Z – $37 million
  2. Diddy – $35 million
  3. Kanye  – $16 million
  4. Lil’ Wayne – $15 million
  5. Birdman – $15 million
  6. Eminem – $14 million
  7. Snoop – $14 million
  8. Dr. Dre – $14 million
  9. Akon (yes, seriously) – $13 million
  10. Ludacris – $12 million