◼ ZAYN MALIK IS REVEALED TODAY as the poorest member of One Direction according to estimates calculated by the annual Sunday Times Rich List. Two years after the boybanders split, he seems to be feeling the cost of going solo, though at least he got back together this week with Gigi Hadid and wore his Looney Tunes T-shirt hoping to put a smile on both their faces. Among the pals in his former band Harry Styles is said now to be the richest of the five, worth £50m.
Mind you, Harry’s wealth pales beside Ed Sheeran at £80m, and Adele who is now estimated at £140m ($190m). In the week she turns 30, she becomes the top earner among the Top Dozen “under-30” pop stars in the UK and Ireland. The only other notables are Sam Smith at £24m, probably boosted by last year’s album, and Rita Ora who enters the list with £16m, presumably boosted by her deals with Adidas, DKNY and other brands.
Richest musicians under 30
Writing about broader shifts in wealth within society, Robert Watts, who compiles the Sunday Times Rich List, said: “Streaming services, the internet and income from endorsements are helping today’s young musicians build an international following – and with it their fortunes – far quicker than the older rockers. Some of the biggest risers [proportionately] over the past year have been amongst younger acts such as Ed Sheeran, Adele and Calvin Harris.”
Sheeran’s fortune leapt by 54% this year, while Adele’s rose by 12%. She is reported saying “money is of little interest” and has rejected offers of celebrity endorsement. The chart-savvy Scottish deejay and crossover producer Harris (worth £140m, up 17%) charges the mind-boggling sum of £370,000 whenever he spins discs in Las Vegas “dozens of times a year” and “seven-figure fees” when playing in Tokyo! Consequently Harris, now aged 34, has topped the Forbes list of the world’s highest-paid deejays for five consecutive years. Eat yer heart out, Rusty Egan!
The UK’s Top 40 musical wrinklies are led as usual by Paul McCartney, at £820m when valued alongside his wife Nancy Shevell, which makes him the richest musician in the history of the Rich List. He has also benefited from the deal that made The Beatles’ 13 albums available on streaming services in 2015. After him come Andrew Lloyd-Webber £740m, Elton John £300m, Mick Jagger £260m and Keith Richards £245m. Ker-ching! Only three performers survive into this year’s list from the Swinging 80s (at a stretch): Gary Barlow (£80m) of Take That, who formed in 1989; Irish singer-songwriter Enya (£104m); and Ozzy Osbourne (£140m), the heavy metallist fired as vocalist from Black Sabbath, who started his solo career in 1980 and released 11 studio albums.
* Valuations of musicians’ wealth for the Sunday Times are based on research by Cliff Dane, author of the Rock Accounts books.