Sean 'P. Diddy' Combs leads Forbes' highest-paid rap stars

Sean Combs performs during the BET Awards in Los Angeles, California.
Sean Combs performs during the BET Awards in Los Angeles, California.REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (REUTERS) - Rapper Sean "P. Diddy" Combs led Forbes' list of the world's highest paid stars in hip-hop music on Tuesday, edging out Jay Z and Drake for the top spot.

Harlem native Combs, 45, made an estimated US$60 million (S$85 million) between June 2014 and June 2015 according to Forbes'calculations, from investments outside of music, such as his TV network Revolt and Ciroc vodka.

His albums includes 2001's The Saga Continues and 2010's Last Train To Paris, and he's working on a new record.

In second place, is rap mogul Jay Z (real name Shawn Carter), the 45-year-old founder of Roc Nation music group, who earned an estimated US$56 million from business ventures in music, sports and lifestyle.

His 22 shows with his wife, singer Beyonce, helped boost his earnings, Forbes said.

Canadian rapper Drake, 28, came in at No. 3 with US$39.5 million, the bulk of which came from touring, as well as high profile endorsements from Sprite and Nike.

Nicki Minaj was the only woman to crack into the top 10 of the highest-paid hip-hop acts, coming in at No. 9 with US$21 million from touring and endorsements.

Forbes calculated its list using pre-tax income figures from factors such as record sales, touring, streaming and endorsements using data from Nielsen SoundScan, the Recording Industry Association of America and interviews with managers, lawyers and in some cases, the artists themselves.

Other hip-hop moguls in the top 10, all of whom hail from North America and Canada, include Beats co-founder Dr Dre and rappers Eminem and Kanye West.

The full list can be viewed at