At just 24 years old, recording artist Taylor Swift earned a reported $64 million last year. Katy Perry and Lady Gaga trailed at "just" $40 million and $33 million respectively. But Beyoncé was positively stratospheric, earning an impressive $115 million in 2014. With huge paydays like these being bounced around, you might think the music business is pretty lucrative these days.
Every time you download an album or stream songs over services like Spotify, Google Play or YouTube, the musicians who actually made the music get a portion of the profits. But, despite the superstars' million dollar paydays, their take is probably a lot less than you think. Digital music makes it easy to listen to songs, but it also makes it hard for musicians to earn very much money.
So, how much do musicians make? That depends on which streaming or download services where their music is available. Each service has its own pricing structure that dictates just how much money the artists can earn.
The website Information is Beautiful created a handy chart, so you can see just how much your favorite musicians are making when they sell their music on popular services like iTunes, Amazon, Bandcamp and more.