Just how far has the electronic dance music world come? Let’s take a look at the top 12 salaries of EDM artists today to give you an idea. The top 10 artists alone earned a total of $268 million, an 11% increase from last year’s top ten:
12. Steve Angello – $12 Million
Though we all sorely miss Swedish House Mafia, its members aren’t doing too shabby on their own. Steve Angello expects to release a solo album this fall. Hopefully, Swedish House Mafia will be reunited at some point in the near future.
12. Armin van Buuren – $12 Million
A skillful artist in the field of trance, Armin van Buuren traveled to 21 cities on his tour last year, featuring his album Intense. Some of his performances would last up to 6 full hours!
11. Hardwell – $13 Million
He may be 11th on this list, but Hardwell was still voted No. 1 dance music artist this year by DJ Magazine. And there’s a lot more in store for this Dutch DJ, including his fall tour and an upcoming debut album.
10. Deadmau5 – $16 Million
The master of technology, Deadmau5 earned $16 million this past year while only playing at about half the gigs that these other big names did. This guy must have a knack for business, seeing as he sometimes racked up half a million in a night.
9. Skrillex – $ 16.5 Million
I’d like to earn $48,000 in a week from album release sales. That’s exactly what happened with Skrillex’s March release of Recess. He also recently released the dates for his upcoming Fall U.S. Tour.
8. Kaskade – $17 Million
Earning a coveted Grammy nomination for his album Atmosphere, Kaskade has really become a master of balance: making time for both 120 shows this year and his three children.
7. Zedd – $21 Million
Hey Skrillex, thanks for the help! Zedd has now risen above his mentor in earnings, and has reached the lofty 6 figure profits in single nights! His hit work “Clarity” is still one of the most played EDM songs.
6. Afrojack – $22 Million
With the release of his first album Forget the World this past May, along with the 150 shows he played this year, Afrojack has cemented his spot in the top 10.
5. Steve Aoki – $23 Million
This guy amazes even his fellow artists; having played 277 shows this past year—pretty much doubling the amount of anyone else in the top 10—Aoki has become the king of power naps.
3. Avicii – $28 Million
With one of the first viral EDM songs, Levels, Avicii transitioned from a local Swedish hit to a renowned EDM superstar. One of his more recent hits, “Wake Me Up,” sold more than 4 million copies, a number unparalleled in electronic history.
3. Tiesto – $28 Million
One of the finest veteran DJs in the game, Tiesto has played over 100 shows this past year. Like Guetta, he has shifted his focus away from the famed Ibiza to Las Vegas, where he spins in the Hakkasan nightclub.
2. David Guetta – $30 Million
Previously a club manager in the bustling city of Paris, Guetta has risen as one of the best electronic producers out there. His shows in Las Vegas are some of the most expensive.
1. Calvin Harris – $66 Million
From grocery store stocker to worldwide EDM sensation, Calvin Harris played more than 125 shows this year, and racked up the highest annual salary of any DJ.