If you were around in the early 2000s, you’ll remember Avril Lavigne. With her skate punk persona and her catchy way with a tune, she was the Pop Punk Queen who dominated the airwaves with hits like “Complicated” and “Sk8er Boi”. In the years since, she might have lost some of the attitude but she’s still making records, still drawing crowds, and, judging by her phenomenal net worth, still making a truckload of money. According to Celebrity Net Worth, the Canadian musician is now sitting on a very pretty net worth of $50 million. All that, and she’s still only 36 years old. How’s she done it? Prepare to find out.
A Child Star
Lavigne was born in 1984 in Ontario, Canada. From the time she regaled them with a pitch-perfect rendition of “Jesus Loves Me” when she was just 2 years old, her parents knew they weren’t dealing with any normal child. Keen to encourage their daughter’s passion for music, Mr. and Mrs. Lavigne spend a fortune on keeping her in keyboards, guitars, drum kits, and microphones. They even went to the expense of converting their basement into a studio. By the time she hit her teens, Lavigne was performing up and down the state at county fairs. While her stage-set mostly extended to cover versions of country classics, she’d secretly begun to write her own compositions.
After several years of flirting around the country scene, Lavigne got her first big moment in 1999 when she won a competition to sing in front of an audience of over 20 thousand alongside her icon, Shania Twain. A few months after that, she was talent-spotted by a local folksinger called Stephen Meddand who invited her to lay down vocals on his upcoming album. But if 1999 has started out well for Lavigne, it ended even better. In December, she was spotted by manager Cliff Fabri who immediately signed her to his books. By the start of the following year, she’d been signed to Arista Records for a reported $2 million, had left school, polished up her skater image, and was heading headlong towards her first chart hit.
An Overnight Sensation
In June 2002, Lavigne released her first album, “Let Go”. To say it did well would be an understatement. In the US, it climbed all the way to number two on the Billboard 200 albums chart. In the UK, it did even better, peaking at number one and making the then 17-year-old Lavigne the youngest female solo artist to achieve a number-one album on the UK Albums Chart. Her debut single from the album, “Complicated”, fared just as well, becoming one of the biggest hits of the 2000s in the US and dominating the charts worldwide. Her follow up singles, “Sk8er Boi” and “I’m with You”, cemented her status as a rising star. By the end of 2002, she’s been nominated for 8 Grammys, won 4 Junos, and been named the “World’s Bestselling Canadian Singer” at the World Music Awards. Avril Lavigne had arrived.
Over the next few years, Lavigne continued to make good on her early promise. Her second studio album, “Under My Skin,” sold over 10 million copies, certifying five-times Platinum in Canada and reaching number one in the US, Canada, Australia, Japan, and the UK. “The Best Damn Thing,” her third studio album, debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 and spawned the massive hit, “Girlfriend”, the singer’s first number-one single on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Her subsequent albums, “Goodbye Lullaby” (2011), “Avril Lavigne” (2013), and “Head Above Water” (2019) haven’t reached the same dizzying heights as her early efforts, but nonetheless, have all performed well enough to keep Lavigne firmly in the spotlight.
If there’s one thing Lavigne isn’t, it’s lazy. In the years following her breakthrough, she committed to a relentless touring schedule that would have wiped out a lesser mortal. She may have cooled things down a little since then, but she’s by no means laid off completely, as a quick glance at the full list of her tours on concertarchives.org will tell you. Although she’s frequently toured as a guest with other bands and artists, her own headlining tours include Try to Shut Me Up Tour (2002–03), Live by Surprise Tour (2004), Bonez Tour (2004–05), The Best Damn Thing Promotional Tour (2007), The Best Damn World Tour (2008), Black Star Tour (2011–12), The Avril Lavigne Tour (2013–14), and Head Above Water Tour (2019).
Awards don’t necessarily make you rich, but they do tend to make you famous. And being famous comes with its own rewards, most of them financial. Over the course of her two-decade career, Lavigne has won more awards than most of us have had hot dinners. According to Wiki, Lavigne is the proud recipient of twenty-seven MTV Awards, six World Music Awards, six ASCAP Awards, three Teen Choice Awards, eight MuchMusic Video Awards, eight Juno Awards, seven BMI Awards, and two NRJ Music Awards. She also holds the Guinness World Record for Youngest Female with a Number One Album in the UK, and countless nominations, including eight Grammy Awards, three American Music Awards, three Brit Awards, and four Billboard Music Awards. If that wasn’t enough, she ranked #10 on “Billboard” magazine’s “Best of the 2000s” chart, became the first singer to ever generate more than 1 million YouTube views with a pop video, and has been named one of VH1’s “100 Greatest Women in Music”.
Although she made her name as a singer, Lavigne hasn’t been silly enough to say no to other money-spinning opportunities over the years. In 2010, she appeared as a guest mentor on “American Idol”; a year later, she did the same on “Majors & Minors”. She’s also tried her hand at acting on several occasions, with some of her most notable performances coming in “Fast Food Nation” (2006), “Over the Hedge” (2006), “The Flock” (2007), and “Charming” (2018).
At the age of 2, Lavigne was already singing. By the time she was in her teens, she had a recording contract worth 2 million, a clutch of worldwide number ones, and an international reputation as the Pop Punk Queen. She may have dropped the ties and the wife-beaters in the years since, but she still knows how to write a song that sells. Considering all that, it’s little wonder she’s one of the richest women in pop.