Even if they"re no the people on stage belting out their tunes, songwriters can make quite bit of cash from posting royalties. If you write a hit song, you"ll choose up anywhere from a few cents to hundreds of dollars any kind of time it"s played on TV, the radio, or in a film. Let"s take a look at a couple of noteworthy story of music royalties.

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Jeopardy! Theme renders a Non-Trivial Amount

Jeopardy!"s memorable theme track "Think!" was originally composed by present creator Merv Griffin as a lullaby because that his kid Tony; in 2005 Griffin called the New York Times that he had actually tossed the track together in much less than a minute. It might have been the most financially rewarding minute on record, though. In the same interview, Griffin approximated that the royalties native the theme had put somewhere between $70 and also $80 million in his pockets.

To put that number in perspective, to make that lot loot by play Jeopardy!, Ken Jennings would have needed to success every game for around 10 years.

"Happy Royalties to You"Elton John deserve to Afford several Candles
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If you"ve gained to go the end on a limb, "Candle in the Wind" is a pretty great bet. The song, i beg your pardon was initially written for the 1973 album Goodbye Yellow Brick Road through John and lyricist Bernie Taupin, got to #11 top top the UK charts when it to be released together a solitary in 1974. In 1986 man released one even an ext successful live single of the track that featured accompaniment indigenous the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra; that version got to #5 ~ above the UK charts and also peaked at #6 in the U.S.

The actual sales, though, came once Taupin and also John revised the song following the 1997 death of Diana, Princess the Wales. Taupin readjusted the lyrics from a tribute to Marilyn Monroe to a tribute come Princess Di, and John rerecorded the track together "Candle in the Wind 1997." The solitary shot come the peak of the charts around the world, and John pledged all of the song"s royalties to the Diana, Princess the Wales Memorial Fund. By the finish of the year, the song had actually earned $33 million for the foundation, and also the Guinness book of Records later certified it as the best-selling single "since records began."

The video clip Beatles Rake the In
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Kevork Djansezian, Getty Images

Just how an useful are the civil liberties to the Beatles" catalog? consider this: when Viacom licensed the Fab Four"s tunes for the video clip game Beatles absent Band critical year, that coughed up $10 million simply in early fees. Wired estimated that if the video game sold together planned, the royalties for the Beatles" legal rights holders would be over $40 million.

"Baker Street" leads to easy Street

It"s not simply mega-hits prefer the Beatles" catalog that heap up big royalties. According to a 2006 report, Scottish singer songwriter Gerry Rafferty pulls in end $100,000 a year in royalties native his 1978 single "Baker Street." Not also shabby because that a song that never ever hit #1 in the U.S. Or the U.K.

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"A Whiter shade of salary Me mine Royalties"

British band Procol Harum scored a number-one hit v its 1967 monitor "A Whiter shade of Pale," and after spending six weeks atop the charts, the track has delighted in a long life ~ above oldies stations. Most listeners would agree that the organ component is the lynchpin the the song, yet organist Matthew Fisher didn"t obtain a sniff that the royalties. Instead, the cash got in the pockets the frontman Gary Brooker, that sang and played piano ~ above the song, and manager/lyricist Keith Reid.