25 Richest Guitar Players of All Time

Ever found yourself noodling away on your guitar and daydreaming about making it big? Well, you’re not alone. Many guitarists have strummed their way into the hearts of millions, and their bank accounts have followed suit.

So, let’s dive into the list of the all-time richest guitar players and see just how they made their moolah.

1. Paul McCartney

Net Worth: $1.2 Billion.

Starting off with the big guns, Sir Paul McCartney, primarily known as a bassist, also has some serious guitar skills. With an estimated net worth of over $1.2 billion, McCartney isn’t just the richest guitarist; he’s one of the richest musicians, period. From his legendary stint with The Beatles to his enduring solo career, he’s done it all. And let’s not forget, he also has a knack for business with MPL Communications, which has amassed a gold mine of music rights.

2. Jimmy Buffett

Net Worth: $1.0 Billion

Although Jimmy Buffett began as a country singer, he was an avid guitar aficionado, player, and collector. Beyond music, he’s ventured into writing, acting, and business.

3. Keith Richards

Net Worth: $520 Million.

While he’s known for his rugged charm and iconic riffs with The Rolling Stones, Keith Richards is also sitting pretty when it comes to his finances. With a net worth floating around the $500 million mark, Richards has made his fortune not just with music, but also with his best-selling autobiography and film appearances. And, of course, The Stones’ mega tours play no small part in padding his bank account.

4. Eric Clapton

Net Worth: $450 Million.

Slowhand, as he’s lovingly called by his fans, Eric Clapton has played with some of the most influential bands like Cream and The Yardbirds. His solo career is equally illustrious. With a net worth of over $450 million, Clapton’s wealth isn’t just from music. His art collection once auctioned for a whopping $34 million, and his Crossroads rehab center has both contributed to his coffers.

5. George Harrison

Net Worth: $400 Million.

While often overshadowed by Lennon and McCartney, George Harrison was a force to be reckoned with. His contributions to The Beatles, his successful solo career, and ventures like the Traveling Wilburys have earned him posthumous earnings that, adjusted for inflation, would put his net worth at around $400 million today. His legacy, managed by the Harrison estate, ensures that his music continues to touch hearts and rake in royalties.

6. The Edge

Net Worth: $400 Million.

The lead guitarist of U2, The Edge (David Evans), is known for his distinctive guitar style. He’s collaborated with numerous artists and has had a successful career with U2 and solo projects.

7. Toby Keith

Net Worth: $370 Million

A force in the country music scene since 1993, Toby Keith’s business ventures, like his restaurant franchise and clothing line, have significantly added to his wealth.

8. Dave Grohl

Net Worth: $330 Million

Starting with Nirvana as a drummer, Grohl made a mark with Foo Fighters and other supergroups, showcasing his versatility.

9. Dave Matthews

Net Worth: $300 Million

Best known for the Dave Matthews Band, his collaborations with other artists have significantly contributed to his wealth.

10. Brian May

Net Worth: $260 Million.

Queen’s lead guitarist, Brian May, has been rocking the world with hits like “We Will Rock You” and “Bohemian Rhapsody”. With an estimated net worth of $260 million, May hasn’t only relied on his guitar skills. His PhD in Astrophysics and his successful ventures into writing and stereoscopic photography have given him a unique position in both the music and academic worlds.

11. Kirk Hammett

Net Worth: $200 Million.

Though not a founding member, Hammett, as Metallica’s lead guitarist, has left an indelible mark on heavy metal.

12. Robert Plant

Net Worth: $200 Million.

Although often recognized by his soaring vocals, Robert Plant’s talents aren’t limited to just singing. His guitar skills have been showcased throughout his illustrious career, and when combined with his voice, they’ve helped amass a net worth of $200 million. With Led Zeppelin’s monumental success and Plant’s subsequent solo career, it’s no wonder he’s secured a comfy spot on our list.

13. Paul Stanley

Net Worth: $200 Million.

KISS isn’t just a band; it’s a brand. And Paul Stanley, with his Starchild persona, has played an instrumental role in its astronomical success. With a net worth of $200 million, Stanley’s earnings don’t come from just album sales and tours. The KISS brand is everywhere – from comic books to action figures and even a theme park! Not to forget his side gigs, like the R&B band, Soul Station.

14. Ronnie Wood

Net Worth: $200 Million.

Ronnie Wood’s association with bands like The Rolling Stones, Faces, and the Jeff Beck Group has solidified his place in rock royalty. But Wood’s not just about music. His ventures in thoroughbred racing and his art have also added to his $200 million net worth. Talk about a Renaissance man!

15. Jimmy Page

Net Worth: $180 Million.

From mind-bending solos to iconic riffs, Jimmy Page’s influence on rock music is undeniable. As the mastermind behind Led Zeppelin, Page has accumulated a net worth of around $200 million. Though Zeppelin disbanded decades ago, their music still sells like hotcakes. Additionally, re-releases, remasters, and reunion tours have played their part in keeping Page’s pockets deep.

16. David Gilmour

Net Worth: $180 Million.

Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour isn’t just known for his soulful solos but also for his songwriting prowess. With classics like “Comfortably Numb” under his belt and a net worth of $180 million, Gilmour has made wise investments over the years, including selling his guitar collection for a staggering $21 million, which he generously donated to combat climate change.

17. Angus Young

Net Worth: $160 Million.

AC/DC’s co-founder and lead guitarist, Angus Young, with his signature schoolboy outfit, has been rocking stages for decades. With timeless hits and massive world tours, Young has amassed a fortune of $160 million. Those AC/DC album sales? They’re among the best-selling of all time!

18. Richie Sambora

Net Worth: $150 Million.

Richie Sambora might be best known as Bon Jovi’s former lead guitarist, but he’s a musical powerhouse in his own right. With a net worth estimated at around $150 million, Sambora has not only made money from Bon Jovi’s massive album sales and tours but also from his solo ventures and various entrepreneurial endeavors.

19. Pete Townshend

Net Worth: $150 Million.

Last, but by no means least, Pete Townshend, with a net worth of $150 million, has been the driving force behind The Who. His role as the primary songwriter and his works as an author and investigative journalist has made sure that his bank balance is as impressive as his musical legacy.

20. Joe Perry

Net Worth: $140 Million.

As the lead guitarist of Aerosmith, Joe Perry, along with Steven Tyler (collectively known as the “Toxic Twins”), has given the world some of its most iconic rock anthems. With world tours, best-selling albums, and even a stint in the hot sauce business, Perry’s diversified portfolio contributes to his net worth of around $140 million.

21. Slash

Net Worth: $120 Million.

The iconic Guns N’ Roses lead guitarist with his signature top hat, Slash (Saul Hudson) has not just made an indelible mark on rock music but has also made some serious cash along the way. While most of his $120 million net worth stems from GnR’s meteoric rise to fame and their subsequent reunion tours, his side projects like Velvet Revolver and his solo albums have also been lucrative.

22. Carlos Santana

Net Worth: $120 Million.

When you think of mesmerizing guitar solos and Latin-infused rock, Carlos Santana surely comes to mind. His legendary Woodstock performance, combined with hits over the decades, especially the multi-platinum “Supernatural” album, have earned him a comfortable spot with an estimated net worth of $120 million.

23. Mark Knopfler

Net Worth: $105 Million.

Dire Straits’ frontman, Mark Knopfler, isn’t just a genius with fingerstyle guitar; he’s also a maestro at accumulating wealth. With a net worth of $105 million, Knopfler’s unique guitar sound and memorable hits like “Money for Nothing” have garnered him not just critical acclaim but also hefty paychecks. Add to that his work on film scores and his solo career, and you’ve got a recipe for financial success.

24. John Mayer

Net Worth: $70 Million.

John Mayer, with his bluesy guitar licks and pop sensibilities, has conquered the charts repeatedly since the early 2000s. But Mayer isn’t just about heartbreak songs and guitar solos. His collaborations with brands for exclusive guitar designs, and his involvement in the watch-collecting world, have boosted his net worth to around $70 million.

25. Jeff Beck

Net Worth: $25 Million.

Jeff Beck has been described by many as one of the best guitarists in history, and while he may not have the commercial success of some on our list, his influence in the guitar world is second to none. With a net worth of $25 million, Beck’s earnings stem from his music, his tours, and his collaborative works with other big names in the industry.