Britney Spears tops list of highest-earning female musicians 2012

Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry all included

Britney Spears has been revealed as the highest-earning female in music in 2012, bringing in an estimated £40m through album sales, live shows and TV appearances.

Spears boosted her income significantly this year when she signed up to appear as a judge on the latest season of The X Factor in the US, which comes in addition to her latest album, 2011’s ‘Femme Fatale’, being certified platinum and live dates around the world supporting the release.

Taylor Swift, who has released one of the best-selling albums of 2012 in ‘Red’, is at number two in the annual Forbes list with earnings of £35m. ‘Red’ sold 1.2m copies in its first week on sale and it is estimated that Swift grosses $1m per night when she plays live.


Elsewhere on the list are Rihanna, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry. Both Adele and Beyonce feature despite not releasing any new material or playing live in 2012. Beyonce is expected to climb the earnings list in 2013 following the announcement of her £31m deal with Pepsi. The singer’s new promotional deal will see her starring in a new advert for the drink and her face will also appear on a limited run of drinks cans. Pepsi in turn will sponsor Beyonce’s 2013 tour and the promotional campaign will coincide with the release of her new album, which is expected next year.

The full Forbes list is as follows:

1. Britney Spears – £40m
2. Taylor Swift – £35m
3. Rihanna – £33m
4. Lady Gaga – £32m
5. Katy Perry – £28m
6. Beyonce – £25m
7. Adele – £22m
8. Sade – £20m
9. Madonna – £18m
10. Shakira – £12m