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by Linda Ryan

November 23, 2013

The Highest Paid Musicians of 2013

by Linda Ryan  |  November 23, 2013

There's a reason why Madonna's nickname is the Material Girl. Icon that she is, Madge can sell out any venue, anywhere in the world, faster than you can say "Vogue." And that kind of lionization is, as the saying goes, a license to print money -- which the Material Girl did this year to the tune of $125 million, landing her atop Forbes' The World's Highest Paid Musicians 2013 list.

Who else made the cut? We'll get to that. But first you should know Forbes' ground rules, which are as follows:

1) Income was counted between June 1, 2012 and June 1, 2013.

2) Data sources included Pollstar, Nielsen SoundScan and the RIAA. They say managers, lawyers and many of the artists themselves also chimed in, but managers, lawyers and artists are known to inflate their worth (read: lie), so take this all with a grain of salt.

3) Concert ticket sales, royalties for recorded music and publishing, merch sales, endorsement deals and other business ventures were all included in the equation. So if you are wondering why, for example, Toby Keith comes in at No. 4, it's because they are taking all of the above into consideration, as well as counting monies earned from his chain of bar/restaurants, his line of tequila and his record label.

4) Forbes' estimates reflect pretax income before deducting fees for agents, managers and lawyers. That's important because half these people could be rich on paper, but modestly getting by in reality. Wouldn't it be great to see a before and after list? Now that would be entertainment!

5) Forbes only crunched the numbers for artists who are living.

6) Because of ties, there are 27 artists represented here.

So there you have it. Without further ado, hit play to hear hits from the highest paid musicians of 2013.

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