Kanye West named Forbes highest paid hip hop artiste

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Kanye West has been named Forbes highest paid hip hop artiste for 2019.

Kanye is expected to top $1.5 billion in sales this year or about half of what Nike’s Air Jordan generates in earnings.

Forbes said the earnings will boost West’s pretax income to $150 million over the past year and make him hip-hop’s cash king for the first time ever.

Kanye overtook Jay-Z, who ranks second on this year’s list with $81 million. His rank results from his On The Run II tour with wife Beyoncé.

Drake, the most-streamed artist of any genre, is third, with $75 million.

According to Forbes, the top 20 acts in hip-hop have a combined $860 million, up 33% from $648 million last year.

The bar for entry, $18 million, is the highest ever.

“Our numbers represent pretax income from June 2018 to June 2019 before deducting fees for agents, managers, and lawyers; figures are based on data from Nielsen Music, Pollstar, Bandsintown and interviews with experts, handlers and some of the stars themselves,” Forbes noted in its report.

At Number four, is P Diddy (No. 4, $70 million), said to have raked in the bulk of his bucks from his lucrative deal with Diageo’s Ciroc vodka.

Birdman (No. 16, $20 million) owes his payday to his appropriately-titled label Cash Money Records; and Nas (No. 18, $19 million) returns to the list for the second-straight year thanks largely to multimillion-dollar exits in startup investments like PillPack and Lyft.

There are two newcomers on this year’s list.

The highest-paid among them is Donald Glover (No. 10, $35 million), who padded his coffers with his work on Atlanta and his ‘This Is America Tour’ (as Childish Gambino).

Cardi B (No. 13, $28 million) follows close behind at age 26, she is the youngest artist in this year’s rankings and joins Nicki Minaj (No. 12, $29 million) as one of only two women on the list.

The full list of The World’s 20 Top-Earning Hip-Hop Stars

20. Pitbull ($18 million)

19. Wiz Khalifa ($18.5 million)

18. Nas ($19 million)

17. Future ($19.5 million)

16. Birdman ($20 million)

15. Meek Mill ($21 million)

14. Swizz Beatz ($23 million)

13. Cardi B ($28 million)

12. Nicki Minaj ($29 million)

11. J. Cole ($31 million)

10. Childish Gambino ($35 million)

9. Migos ($36 million)

8. Kendrick Lamar ($38.5 million)

7. DJ Khaled ($40 million)

6. Eminem ($50 million)

5. Travis Scott ($58 million)

4. Diddy ($70 million)

3. Drake ($75 million)

2. Jay-Z ($81 million)

1. Kanye West ($150 million)