Music News: Here are the world's highest-paid women in music

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Beyonce performs at Coachella, April 2018.
Beyonce performs at Coachella, April 2018. (Kevin Winter/Getty Images for Coachella)
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Above, listen to an episode of The Current's daily Music News podcast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, or wherever else you get your podcasts. You can also sign up for a daily Music News e-mail and join our Facebook group.


Forbes has released this year's tabulation of the highest-paid women in music. The top five: Lady Gaga ($50 million), Pink ($52 million), Beyoncé ($60 million), Taylor Swift ($80 million), and at number one, Katy Perry, with an $83 million haul that includes both tour earnings and a reported $20 million for her role on the rebooted American Idol.

The list only includes women, but Swift and Perry may be out-earning any male counterparts. When Billboard tabulated the year's highest-paid musicians back in July, U2 topped the list with a mere $54 million...and they have to split that four ways!

Today's family news: Mandy Moore weds Taylor Goldsmith, and Aaron Carter's going to be a dad

Congratulations to pop-star-turned-TV-star Mandy Moore and Dawes frontman Taylor Goldsmith, who were married this past weekend in Moore's backyard. Entertainment at the event included a performance by Jackson Browne and a brief duet by the happy couple on "The Things I Might Have Been," a song written by the Sherman brothers (of Disney fame) and first recorded by Kitty Wells in 1952. (Billboard)

Also, congrats to child-star-turned-former-child-star Aaron Carter, who's expecting his first child, with girlfriend Lina Valentina. (E! Online)

"Mandy" songwriter Scott English dies at 81

Singer-songwriter and producer Scott English has died, after being hospitalized for an undisclosed illness, at age 81. While his performing career didn't make a big splash, he worked behind the scenes with artists including Carole King, Jeff Beck, and Dionne Warwick. He's best-known as the writer of "Mandy," a number one hit for Barry Manilow in 1974. Today, that's Manilow's far-and-away most-streamed song, beating even "Copacabana." Even on his deathbed, said a representative from his music publisher, English was continuing to write songs. (Music Business Worldwide)

Questlove curates Michelle Obama's book tour playlist

Questlove has assembled a three-part, 300-track playlist for Michelle Obama's book tour. The former First Lady is promoting her new memoir Becoming, and the Roots leader has provided her with a "Michelle Obama Musiaqualogy," spanning her life from 1964 to the present.

"From the jazz and Stevie Wonder of my childhood, to Prince and Earth, Wind, and Fire as I came into my own as an adult, to Beyoncé, Janelle Monáe, and so many others who provided the stirring backbeats of my time in the White House — music has always been a defining part of who I've become," said Obama. "Life's a little better when we live it to Questlove's beat." (Pitchfork)

Avicii's home parish pays tribute with EDM service

The Lutheran parish where Avicii grew up in Stockholm paid tribute to the late artist last week with an EDM service. Pastor Olle Liljefors recruited a young organist and built a makeshift DJ booth to incorporate Avicii's music into the special service. He also delivered a sermon incorporating lyrics from Avicii songs: "When we sit at home 'waiting for love,' or when we are happy and want to dance, or when we feel lost, like 'wake me up when it's all over,' music can bring love, hope, comfort and joy."

As the New York Times notes, the packed service was both a sincere tribute and the latest in a series of efforts by Swedish churches to attract young attendees. Sweden is one of the world's most secular countries, with only 1.1% of the population attending religious services weekly (in the U.S. it's 36%). ABBA masses have become common; churches have also tried U2 masses, Sting masses, and Leonard Cohen masses. Rev. Liljefors is already planning a service featuring the music of his own favorite band: Metallica.

Ice-T finally eats a bagel

Ice-T has eaten a bagel. It's a big deal because the hip-hop star and Law & Order SVU actor shocked the world earlier this month by admitting that he's never had a cup of coffee or a bagel. He finally dug in as part of an ad for the dating app Coffee Meets Bagel. His take on coffee? "Tastes like water." The bagel? "It's not bad. It has a different consistency than a doughnut. People eat this whole thing?" (Consequence of Sound)


Songs sampled in podcast
Jahzzar: "Comedie" (CC BY 4.0)
BoxCat Games: "Against the Wall" (CC BY 3.0)
Aaron Carter: "Aaron's Party (Come Get It)"
Barry Manilow: "Mandy"
Katy Perry: "Power"
Avicii: "Wake Me Up"
Ice-T eats a bagel


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