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Taylor? Gaga? You’ll never guess who’s the top-earning musician of the decade

ABC/Image Group LAIf you had to guess which musician had raked in the most money over the past decade, you might say Taylor Swift or Beyoncé or maybe Lady Gaga.  Well, you’d be right that all three of those women have totally raked it in over the past 10 years, but they didn’t make the most — not by a long shot.

On Forbes’ new list of the top 10 musicians who earned the most money over the last decade, Taylor came in at number two, with earnings of $825 million.  Not bad for a woman who was too young to legally buy a beer when the decade began.  Since then, she’s become a global superstar who fills stadiums worldwide, can sell a million albums in a week, and gets paid stacks of cash for endorsements.

Beyoncé?  She’s number three on the list with $685 million, thanks to her solo career, her tours with and without hubby JAY-Z, and her various side businesses.  Jay is ranked number six, with earnings of $560 million.

Katy Perry and Lady Gaga, meanwhile, are numbers nine and 10 on the list, respectively, with earnings of $530 million and $500 million, thanks to their massive tours and best-selling albums.

The rest of the top 10 is full of classic rockers like U2, Elton John and Paul McCartney, while Diddy is number five, with $605 million — but that’s mostly due to his business dealings, not his music.

And that brings us to the number-one earning musician of the decade — a guy who made most of his cash not through his music, but through his side business.  We’re talking about iconic rapper and producer Dr. Dre.

As Forbes points out, Dre released just one album during the 2010s and hardly toured.  However, he received a massive chuck of change when Apple bought out Beats, the headphone company he co-owned, for $3 billion.

Here’s Forbes’ full top 10 earners list:

1. Dr. Dre — $950 million
2. Taylor Swift — $825 million
3. Beyoncé — $685 million
4. U2 — $675 million
5. Diddy — $605 million
6. Elton John — $565 million
7. Jay-Z — $560 million
8. Paul McCartney — $535 million
9 Katy Perry — $530 million
10. Lady Gaga — $500 million

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