When you think of country music, Garth Brooks almost immediately pops into your head. The country superstar has been dominating the industry for decades.
The Baton Rouge singer retired from recording and performing in 2001, the same year his divorce from his first wife Sandy Mahl was final. It only took eight years for Brooks to realize he missed the music scene, and in 2009 he began a Las Vegas residency.
By 2014, Brooks was ready to hit the road again with his new wife, Trisha Yearwood. Together they came back with a bang, and since then Brooks has been the highest-paid country musician each year. From his 366 shows between 2014 and 2017, Brooks' tour grossed $364.3 million.
But 2018 is the year of surprises, and Brooks was hit with one when he was beat out as country's highest-paid musician. So who managed to surpass the country legend? Forbes released its list of the highest-paid musicians, and it features only one woman.
10. Dolly Parton
Yes, good ol' Dolly Parton is the only woman to be featured in the top 10. Thanks to her Dollywood theme park, dinner establishments, and owning her own master recordings, Parton was able to bring in $19 million.
9. Brad Paisley
He's often seen as the "bad boy" of country music, but there's nothing bad about his bank account! Paisley brought in a staggering $20 million in the last year, thanks to a chart-topping album and world tour.
8. Toby Keith
Though Keith is still making money on his live performances, the country singer is also bringing in cash from other avenues. He has a long-term multi-million dollar deal with Ford, and also owns the restaurant chain I Love This Bar And Grill. Keith brought in $22 million in the last year.
7. Jason Aldean
With the release of his new album Rearview Town, Aldean became the second country act in history to have four consecutive albums be number one on the Billboard 200.
Aldean also owns a bar in Nashville, something a lot of country stars are starting to venture into.
“Twenty years ago, if you’d told me I would have a bar in downtown Nashville, I would have said, ‘Yeah, right,’” Aldean told Forbes. “It’s crazy. But it’s cool for fans. They can go have a drink at my place, see memorabilia from the FGL guys, hang at Blake [Shelton’s] bar. Nashville is booming as a city, and it’s fun to see the changes happening.”
In the past year, Aldean raked in $23 million.
6. Florida Georgia Line
This duo has made a name for themselves as a country crossover group, with some of their songs leaning a little more towards pop than country. That hasn't affected their earnings, though. Florida Georgia Line has brought in $27 million over the last year, thanks in part to their Nashville restaurant called FGL House.
The group also has their own alcoholic drink, called Old Camp Peach Pecan Whiskey.
5. Blake Shelton
If we're being honest, I'm surprised Shelton isn't higher on the list! According to Forbes, half of Shleton's earnings come from his gig as a judge on The Voice, but that doesn't mean he's not performing.
In the last year, the country superstar has performed 27 shows. He's also got deals with Macy's and Smithworks Vodka, and all totaled up he earned $28 million for his work.
4. Zac Brown Band
One of my personal favorites, Zac Brown Band seems to earn its money exclusively from records and touring. Their new album Welcome Home topped the charted all over the world, and their current tour is selling out at every venue.
In the last year, the band brought in $31 million.
3. Kenny Chesney
A long-time staple in the country music world, Chesney is raking in some serious cash from his Trip Around The Sun tour. This, along with his Corona endorsements and his Blue Chair Rum line, has earned the singer $37 million in the last year.
2. Garth Brooks
We've already been over Brooks and Yearwood's four-year world tour, but their performing didn't end there. After the tour ended, they headlined the Stagecoach music festival, as well as the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.
In total, Brooks added $45.5 million to his fortune over the last year.
1. Luke Bryan
Yes, the American Idol judge out-earned Garth Brooks over the past year, but it's not just his TV that's bringing in the dough. Bryan's world tour had 84 stops this past year, and each show grossed seven figures.
He also has an endorsement deal with Chevrolet, and when you add it all together, Bryan brought in $52 million.
Do any of these names surprise you?