Forbes released their Forbes Five: Hip- Hop’s Wealthiest Artists list last week. It was not really a shocker that Sean “Diddy” Combs and Sean Carter aka Jay- Z are at the top of the list. There are some people who would think that Jay Z would take the number one spot but the numbers don’t lie. Diddy earned $580 Million while Jay Z earned $475 Million according to Forbes. Bringing in the rear were Dr. Dre who earned $350 Million, Birdman at $150 Million in fourth place, and lastly 50 Cent who has managed to earn way more than his name sake with a reported $125 Million in the bank. What’s the methodology behind this list? According to Forbes, “In order to complete our Forbes Five list, we followed the same procedure we use to calculate our list of the world’s billionaires: looking at past earnings, valuing current holdings, leafing through financial documents and talking to analysts, attorneys, managers, other industry players and even some moguls themselves to find the nitty-gritty details.” Unfortunately, a report like this always garners the conspiracy theorists who like to argue about the means in which the money was earned. You know, the usual arguments that still revolve around Biggie’s mysterious death in 1997 and Illuminati claims on behalf of Jay Z’s fortune and domination of the game from the stage to the board room as well as his political connections.
How about we talk about how there are still no women on the Hip Hop scene among the top five earners. Currently, the only female voice you even hear on the radio who isn’t singing is Nicki Minaj and at times she trades bars for melodic verses.
The male top earners have been in the business for a while. The money they have on the books does not always equal their musical talent in the booth obviously. Most of their money is from side business ventures and mergers than from lending their voices to tracks these days. It is not just because of their longevity. They have noble drives and business sense. But there are many female MC’s with the same drive and business sense right? Are the woman in Hip Hop getting lower wages because their women the same way most of us are under earning for the same job at our 9 to 5’s? The legends such as MC Lyte, does a lot of voice over work and makes appearances at award shows that are looking for an Old School performance act. Queen Latifah is memorizing lines instead of writing rhymes taking on some great roles on the big screen. On the other end, Foxy Brown made a reappearance last year that was pretty much panned. Lil’ Kim is only making headlines right now for what she claims are doctored photos of her in the media. What about hope for the future? The newbies, like Azealia Banks are spending most of their time beefing on Twitter. I’m waiting for the day when lady MC’s are back to rocking their heels (or high tops) and the mic while climbing to the top of these lists. Forbes Five: Hip- Hop’s Wealthiest Artists Who do you think are the top five wealthiest women in Hip Hop right now? Forbes Five: Hip- Hop’s Wealthiest Artists Forbes Five: Hip- Hop’s Wealthiest Artists