Bon Jovi, Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac Among Richest Rockers

Graham Denholm/Paul Marotta/Brian Killian, Getty Images

Bon Jovi, the Rolling Stones and Fleetwood Mac were among the Top 10 money makers for 2013, based on touring, music sales, publishing royalties and streaming revenue for the past year.

Billboard magazine’s comprehensive list of the richest rockers also had Paul McCartney, the EaglesElton John and Rush in the Top 40.

Bon Jovi finished highest among classic rockers, at No. 4 with $29.4 million in total revenue last year. The Stones followed at No. 5 with $26.2 million. Fleetwood Mac rounded out the Top 10 with $19 million. Paul McCartney (2013 Earnings: $13.8 million) came in at No. 21, the Eagles ($13 million) followed at No. 22. Elton John ($9.4 million) finished at No. 33, with Rush ($9 million) at No. 35.

Bon Jovi’s “Because We Can” tour finished as the top-grossing concert series of last year, pushing the band to the top of that list for the three out of the last six years. Bon Jovi had 1.5 million downloads, even while releasing ‘What About Now’ in 2013, topping the Billboard album charts for the fifth time.

Meanwhile, the Rolling Stones cashed in, despite mounting a very limited run of 2013 shows in North America, averaging $4.7 million per show. The band added two new songs to its most recent greatest hits package, and boasted some 1.5 million track downloads. Fleetwood Mac played 34 cities, including a three-night stand in London that saw the return of long-time member Christine McVie. A new EP, called ‘Extended Play,’ also reached the Billboard Top 50.

Billboard’s Top 10 Money Makers for 2013
1. Taylor Swift: $39.7 million
2. Kenny Chesney: $34 million
3. Justin Timberlake: $31.5 million
4. Bon Jovi: $29.4 million
5. Rolling Stones: $26.2 million
6. Beyonce: $24.4 million
7. Maroon 5: $22.3 million
8. Luke Bryan: $22.1 million
9. P!nk: $20 million
10. Fleetwood Mac: $19 million

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Vince Neil Rocks Motley Crue Songs With Country Stars Brantley Gilbert + Justin Moore in Nashville

Justin Moore and Vince Neil
Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Big Machine Label Group

As part of the Country Radio Seminar week in Nashville, there are always surprises for those who make the trip to Music City. One of the biggest surprises of the week comes from Big Machine Records — home of artists like Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw and Rascal Flatts — when the label joined the forces of their country roster with the legend that is Vince Neil, frontman for Motley Crue.

On Wednesday (Feb. 19), near the end of his set, country artist Justin Moore (pictured above with Neil) walked off stage as the lights dimmed and a video of Motley Crue’s success played for the audience. As the video wrapped up, Moore’s band came back out onstage, but this time with a couple of fresh faces: country man Brantley Gilbert (pictured below with Neil) and the one and only Vince Neil. The two tore into a rocking version of ‘Wild Side,’ much to the delight of the crowd. When they finished the song, it was obvious Neil was having a blast. “You know that Scott Borchetta is doing a Motley Crue tribute album country style,” Neil told the audience, giving a big shout-out to Borchetta, the founder of Big Machine. “It’ll be pretty bad ass.”

With that statement, Gilbert left and Moore came back out, and he and Neil belted out ‘Home Sweet Home, ‘Dr. Feelgood’ and an encore of ‘Kickstart My Heart.’ No matter what the preferences of those in the crowd were, there was no denying that everyone was enjoying the mash-up of country and rock in the heart of Nashville. Continuing to appreciate those in the crowd and onstage with him, Neil made a very simple yet profound statement: “You guys f—ing rock.”

Nikki Sixx also made the rounds in Nashville, but didn’t perform. He did take some photos with the country stars while attending the seminar.

Scheduled to hit stores sometime this summer, Big Machine Records is partnering with several country acts to record a tribute album in honor of Motley Crue, putting country spins on the band’s classic cuts.

Brantley Gilbert and Vince Neil
Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Big Machine Label Group
Nikki Sixx, Brantley Gilbert, and Vince Neil
Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Big Machine Label Group