Rock Stars Who Are Poorer Than You Think

Many rock stars have earned hefty sums during their careers, and a lot of them have also lost hefty sums during their careers. The rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle doesn’t tend to breed paragons of financial responsibility, so let’s take a look at some rock stars who are surprisingly poor.

With his monthly residency at Madison Square Garden and scores of hit songs, it’s not like Billy Joel wallows in poverty. Still, even a wealthy entertainer feels it when someone embezzles him out of tens of millions of dollars. This is exactly what happened to Joel, courtesy of his former manager Frank Weber. The ridiculous numbers involved were revealed in 1989, when Joel sued Weber for a whopping $90 million. $30 million of that was compensatory damage for money Weber had allegedly squandered, and $60 million was punitive damages for the multiple ways Weber had reportedly defrauded Joel.

According to the lawsuit, Weber had given huge loans to his own enterprises in Joel’s name, lost over $10 million on various investments, and even mortgaged the singer’s copyrights without bothering to mention it. All the while, he was pulling strings to make the papers that Joel received massively misleading. And while he was doing all this, he was also happily raking in $20 million of Joel’s money in commissions.

Joel’s quest for comeuppance didn’t exactly go well, as Weber cunningly filed for bankruptcy and the case was ultimately settled out of court. This notably wasn’t even the first time the Weber family had hurt the singer. In 1982, Joel had a painful divorce from Weber’s sister Elizabeth, who ironically also used to manage Joel, who would later exclaim,

“I hooked up with the Borgias!”

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Billy Joel | 0:16
Willie Nelson | 1:35
Cat Power | 2:43
Ron Isley | 3:45
Grizzly Bear | 4:50
Sly Stone | 6:01
Conor Oberst | 7:06
David Cassidy | 7:59
Scott Weiland | 9:00
Lemmy Kilmister | 10:11

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