News — August 25, 2015 at 3:43 pm

Hang on… HOW much? Who are the Top 10 World’s Highest Paid DJs for 2015?


The numbers keep stacking up for those at the top of the EDM food chain. Forbes has just released its 2015 Electronic Cash Kings list of the world’s highest paid DJs, and it comes with more eight digit numbers than a phone book.calvin-harris-live


Hitmaker Calvin Harris sits atop the throne as the biggest earner in 2015 for the third year in the row, taking home a staggering US$66 million, as calculated from “live shows, endorsements, merchandise sales, recorded music sales and external business ventures.” Between his and girlfriend Taylor Swift‘s salaries, they’re now the highest earning couple in the music business, knocking Jay-Z and Beyonce off their perch.


Harris has been laughing all the way to the bank since he topped the highest paid list in 2013, earning an estimated $46 million dollars, $14 million (or almost 45% more) than Tiësto’s measly take home of $32 million. “The rise of dance music has been astronomical … I happened to be in the right place at the right time,” he told FORBES.


Elsewhere on the list are a host of recognizable names like David Guetta, Steve Aoki, Afrojack and Skrillex while hitmaker Diplo‘s collaborations with popstars like CL and production for artists like Madonna saw his wealth rise by a healthy 15 million.


Of interest is that the amount these globe-trotting DJs are commanding is rising at a much slower rate than in the past.  Over the past 12 months, the top ten DJs took in $274 million, more than double the $116 million total for the top ten in 2012. But the pace is slowing.After a 108% increase from 2012 to 2013, the number grew 11% from 2013 to 2014, and only 2.5% from 2014 to 2015. This has been attributed to rising production costs that have seen DJs pumping up to 30-40% of their appearance fees into intricate and costly stage equipment.


Check out the rankings below, or over at the Forbes website.




#9 Deadmau5 ($15 million) / Diplo ($15 million)
#8 Afrojack ($16 million)
#7 Martin Garrix ($17 million) / Zedd ($17 million)
#6 Kaskade ($18 million)
#5 Avicii ($19 million)
#4 Skrillex ($24 million) / Steve Aoki ($24 million)
#3 Tiësto ($36 million)
#2 David Guetta ($37 million)
#1 Calvin Harris ($66 million)