RnB singers rank among the highest paid celebrities in the world. This isn’t a surprise, as RnB and its various sub-genres have been leading the popular music charts for decades. Big voices and slick dance moves often translate into successful careers and big paychecks. Here is a list of the 10 richest RnB singers in the world, who have earned extensive success through their music, tours and other various ventures.
Number Ten: R. Kelly ($150 Million)
Ove the course of his 27-year career, R. Kelly has released 12 studio albums and sold more than 100 million units worldwide. His work has helped define a new generation of RnB singers, earning him the title “King of RnB.” He shattered expectations in 2005 when he released the first five parts of “Trapped in the Closet,” a 33-chapter “hip-hopera” where he sings the story as it happens. However, his biggest hit was “I Believe I Can Fly,” which transcended the RnB genre in 1997 and became one of Rolling Stone’s 500 greatest songs of all time.
Number Nine: Rihanna ($160 Million)
Hailing from Barbados, Rihanna has been bringing a bit of island flavor to RnB since her debut single, “Pon de Replay,” in 2005. Since then, she has gone on to sell more than 200 Million albums worldwide and rack up 14 number one singles. She also holds the Recording Industry Association of America’s record for most digital song awards, being the only artist to have more than 100 million single downloads.
Number Eight: Babyface ($170 Million)
Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds has been recording since the late 1970s with his groups Manchild and The Deele, and continues to release music on his own to this day. However, he is probably best known for his work as a producer, co-founding LaFace Records with former bandmate L.A. Reid and working with artists as varied as Bobby Brown, Paula Abdul, Usher, Toni Braxton, Boys II Men, Madonna, Janet Jackson, Dianna Ross, Fall Out Boy, Céline Dion, Colbie Caillat, P!nk and many, many more. He has contributed to many number one songs and platinum albums, and has earned himself and others countless awards.
Number Seven: Janet Jackson ($175 Million)
Since the start of her music career in 1973, Janet Jackson has released 11 albums, 18 consecutive top ten singles and has gone more than 26 times platinum in the United States. Her music has been influential to newer RnB singers with her straight-forward vocals and heavily choreographed dance routines.
Number Six: Usher ($180 Million)
Usher Raymond has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, making him one of the top selling artists of the 2000s. He has been topping the charts since he started his singing career in 1991, earning nine number one singles. Raymond has translated his success into helping other artists get their start, creating US Records in 2002 and later collaborating with Scooter Braun on the Raymond Braun Group, which signed Justin Bieber in 2009.
Number Five: RnB Singers: Lionel Richie ($200 Million)
Starting his music career in 1968 with the Commodores, Lionel Richie has earned five number one singles and has released 10 studio albums, five of which went multi-platinum. His music still has a very devoted fanbase, particularly in many Arab countries. Richie continues to release music to this day, and remains one of the most influential and best-selling RnB singers of all time.
Number Four: Tina Turner ($250 Million)
With nearly 60 years in the music industry, Tina Turner is one of the most prolific RnB singers of all time. For two decades, she released hit after hit with ex-husband Ike, then transitioned into an extremely successful solo career. On her own, she released nine studio albums, five of which went multi-platinum. To date, she has sold more than 200 million albums worldwide and remains the Guinness World Record holder for most concert tickets ever sold.
Number Three: Diana Ross ($250 Million)
Named the most successful female music artist ever by the Guinness Book of World Records, Diana Ross has been one of the top RnB singers since the beginning of her career in 1959. Between her work with The Supremes and as a solo artist, she has released 53 studio albums and 70 singles. Ross continues to record and tour to this day.
Number Two: Beyoncé ($450 Million)
Coming onto the scene in 1997 with Destiny’s Child, Beyoncé has become one of the best-selling artists of all time, as well as one of the most influential people in the world. Between Destiny’s Child and her solo work, she has released 12 albums and had 10 number one singles. She is also part of one of the most powerful celebrity couples in hip-hop with her husband, Jay-Z.
Number One: Mariah Carey ($500 Million)
With worldwide record sales of more than 200 million units, Mariah Carey ranks as the third-best-selling female artist in the United States. To date, she has released 13 studio albums, 10 of which have gone multi-platinum, and 62 singles, 18 of which have reached number one on the charts. She has also had numerous other ventures as well, including perfume, jewelry and clothing lines. Thank you for reading our list of the top 10 richest RnB singers in the world. We hope you enjoyed it!