Carrie Underwood Is Forbes' Top-Earning 'American Idol' Alum

Carrie UnderwoodEthan MillerCarrie Underwood earned $US31 million in 2013.

Season 13 of “American Idol” kicks off tonight with a two-night premiere, and if this season is anything like past competitions, we’ll have plenty of entertainment on our hands — from outrageous tryouts and backstage drama, to bickering judges and mindblowing vocal performances.

Just in time, Forbes has released its list of top-earning American Idols, and in the number one spot sits none other than 2005’s winner, Carrie Underwood.

The 31-year-old country star earned $US31 million in 2013, thanks to her nationwide tour, platinum-selling “Blown Away” album, and Olay endorsement deal.

Since taking the crown in Season 4, Underwood has pulled in more than $US83 million

The singer also appeared in NBC’s “The Sound of Music Live!,” which despite negative criticism, attracted 18.5 million viewers.

Season 1 winner Kelly Clarkson came in at number two on the list, having raked in $US7 million last year, while Phillip Phillips (Season 11 winner) and Adam Lambert (Season 8’s runner-up) tied for third place with $US5 million earned over the course of 2013.

Forbes calculated the former Idols’ earnings through Pollstar Pro, RIAA, and Nielsen SoundScan ratings, as well as through industry interviews.

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