Dr. Dre has tripled his net worth in the past few days. Last week news emerged that HTC was buying a 51 percent stake in the headphone company Dre co-owns with Interscope chief Jimmy Iovine for a startling $300 million, a deal that could eventually push the rapper's wealth north of half a billion according to Forbes' back-of-the-envelope calculations. Dr. Dre has been in the headphone business for less than four years, a little less than half the amount of time he's been working on his final album, Detox, due out next year. But Dr. Dre's not the only hip-hop artist inverting roles. The past few years have seen some of the industries biggest entainers become wildly wealthy off of everything except actually entertaining people.
Sean Combs and Sean John - The notoriously entrepreneurial artist formerly known as Puff Daddy, P. Diddy and just Diddy made his name(s) producing Top 40 smash hits with Notorious B.I.G., but he made his money manufacturing menswear. Launched in 1998, Diddy's Sean John is an award-winning clothing company that's helped Combs become the richest rapper in the world. Along with his record business and stake in Ciroc vodka, Sean John has helped Combs build a $475 million fortune. "My brand is rocket fuel. It would take this brand 10 years to get to where I can take it in one year," Combs told The New York Times in 2008. "I've gotten to the point where I don’t want to do just endorsements. I want ownership."