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A Yearly Salary in the Rap Industry

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Like all other genres within the music business, the creation, production, marketing and sale of rap music requires people of varied talents. And while the rap artist is the public face of such music there are many others working behind the scenes to bring it to the masses. Still, music is a business or industry similar in many respects to all others. Salaries in the rap industry, for instance, vary greatly and some people make significant incomes while others make relatively little money.

Rap Artist Salaries

According to the "Celebrity Net Worth" website, the five richest rappers were worth from $260 million to $580 million, with hip-hop mogul Diddy garnering the latter. The second richest rapper, Jay-Z, earns $15 million annually just from a single deal with Live Nation, a concert promotions corporation. However, super rich rappers are fairly rare. Like most music artists, rappers are frequently the last to see any income from their labors, with artists sometimes seeing less than $20,000 from a gold record.

General Rap Industry Salaries

Your rap industry salary usually depends on what it is you do. For example, rap music producers are normally paid by the artists, as are artists' managers. Most record companies pay for the salaries of studio musicians and others employed by them to produce rap artists' music. Rap concert promoters and their own employees also earn salaries separate from the efforts of artists. If you're good at what you do in rap music, industry salary is about $56,000, according to the Simply Hired careers website.

Breaking Into Rap Music

The music business in general can be hard-bitten and even cutthroat, and rap is no exception. If you're a rap artist hoping to score a record deal, you'll work extremely hard on self-promotion and getting discovered. Many hopeful rap artists even hawk their own records and merchandise at venues at which they're performing until they attract an agent or a record company. Rap music industry employees outside of performers can learn the skills of their trade while working in internships or paying jobs.

Good-paying Rap Industry Jobs

As noted by "The State of Hip Hop" website, rap and other music artists are often the poorest-paid people involved with their music. And many jobs in rap music are available that provide for steady salaries, though the allure of rap stardom is a powerful attraction. For instance, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says that graphic design artists earned 2020 median salaries of $53,380. Record and other companies involved in rap music normally require the services of large numbers of graphic artists.


Tony Guerra served more than 20 years in the U.S. Navy. He also spent seven years as an airline operations manager. Guerra is a former realtor, real-estate salesperson, associate broker and real-estate education instructor. He holds a master's degree in management and a bachelor's degree in interdisciplinary studies.

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