It has been 38 years since the passing of reggae icon Bob Marley, but the estate of the singer of anthems including One Love, No Woman No Cry, Africa Unite and Natural Mystic, continues to earn millions.
In the latest annual listing of the top-earning dead celebrities, American business magazine Forbes has placed Marley at number five with a gross earnings of US$20 million.
The magazine noted that it calculates its yearly listing based on data from Nielsen Music, IMDBPro and interviews with industry insiders. Fees for agents, managers and lawyers are not deducted.
Forbes’ list of the top-earning dead celebrities measures pre-tax income from October 1, 2018 through to October 1, 2019.
The income for the Marley estate, Forbes noted, comes from nearly one billion streaming spins in the United States, and the fact that his music keeps his House of Marley products, including headphones, speakers and turntables, as viable commodities on the market.
This year’s list is topped by the King of Pop Michael Jackson, who died in 2009, but his estate earned US$60 million over the past year. Second place went to Elvis Presley, who earned US$39 million. He died in 1977.
In third is Charles Schultz of Peanuts fame. He died in 2000 and earned US$38 million over the past 12 months. Golf legend Arnold Palmer who died in 2016 is in the fourth spot with earnings of US$30 million.
Dr Seuss, creator of the popular books, is in sixth place with US$19 million. He died in 1991. The seventh spot is held by John Lennon of The Beatles, who died in 1980. His earnings this year stood at $14 million.
Film siren Marilyn Monroe is in the eighth spot. She passed away in 1962 from a drug overdose. Her estate earned US$13 million for the period under review. The ninth spot is held by Prince, whose earning reached US$12 million. He died in 2016.
The tenth place is held by hip hop act Nispey Hussle who earned US$11 million. He was killed in March of this year. The artistes who fell just under the top 10 include Whitney Houston, George Harrison and XXXTentacion.