First airing in 2002, American Idol has searched for the next big singer. Stars such as Kelly Clarkson and Phillip Phillips landed dream careers and multi-million dollar net worths thanks to the popular competition.
They're not the only ones. From no-names to mega-stars, these upcoming American Idol alumni didn't just make it big on stage but all the way to the bank, becoming some of the richest people to come from the show.
Jason Castro: $12 Million
Folk singer Jason Castro appeared on the seventh season of American Idol, coming in fourth place that year. From there, Castro landed a recording deal with Atlantic Records, releasing his debut album in 2010.
Since 2013, Castro has released three albums and has appeared on a few television shows, including The Bold and the Beautiful. According to Idol Net Worth, Castro is rolling in the dough with $12 million.
Lauren Alaina: $800,000
Lauren Alaina made quite an impression on the tenth season of American Idol, becoming the runner-up that season. From there, Alaina released her debut album Wildflower, followed by a few more albums and award wins, including an American Country Award for New Artist of the Year.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Alaina is worth $800,000.
Fantasia Barrino: $1 Million
Fantasia Barrino rose to fame after winning season three of American Idol. From there, she went on to release her first single, "I Believe," which landed at number one on the Billboard Hot 100.
A few years later, Barrino won her first Grammy Award, along with an induction into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame. According to Celebrity Net Worth, the singer is now worth $1 million.
Candice Glover: $1 Million
After auditioning three times for American Idol, Candice Glover finally got her shot at the big times during the twelfth season of the show. That year, she won and went on to release her debut album Music Speaks.
Along with her solo career, Glover has also appeared in the Broadway musical Home For the Holidays, Live on Broadway. According to Celebrity Net Worth, she is currently worth $1 million.
Caleb Johnson: $1 Million
After winning the thirteenth season of American Idol, Caleb Johnson has stayed busy. Not only did he release and debut album, but he also went on to create the band Caleb Johnson and the Ramblin' Saints.
On top of that, Johnson is the frontman for Meatloaf's Neverland Express. As of 2022, Johnson is worth $1 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Phillip Phillips: $3.5 Million
Phillip Phillips is one of the most well-known people to come out of American Idol. After winning the eleventh season of the show, Phillips' coronation song, "Home," became the best-selling track in the show's history.
He then went on to tour with some huge names, including the Goo Goo Dolls, Bruce Springsteen, and John Mayer. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he is currently worth $3.5 million.
Tamyra Gray: $1 Million
Tamyra Gray is one of the original contestants of American Idol, appearing on the show in the first season and landing in fourth place. Even so, Gray has had a successful music career, helping co-write Fantasia Barrino's hit song "I Believe" and appearing on Broadway.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Gray's net worth is around $1 million.
Melinda Doolittle: $1.5 Million
Before her time on American Idol, Melinda Doolittle was nothing more than a background singer for a few artists. After coming in third during the sixth season of the show, she performed on a few television shows and in arenas, including singing the national anthem during game five of the 2007 NBA Eastern Conference Finals.
According to Idol Net Worth, Doolittle was $1.5 million to her name.
Jordin Sparks: $8 Million
At the age of 17, Jordin Sparks became the youngest winner in the history of American Idol. After releasing songs like "Tattoo" and "No Air," Sparks cemented herself as a serious contender in the music industry.
As of 2022, she has nine award wins to her name and one Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Sparks is worth $8 million.
Danny Gokey: $600,000
On the eighth season of American Idol, Danny Gokey landed in third place. While he didn't win his season, it didn't stop 19 Recordings and RCA Nashville from signing the country singer. Since being signed, Gokey has released numerous albums, including My Best Days and Hope in Front of Me.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, his career has helped Gokey land a net worth of $600,000.
Carrie Underwood: $140 Million
After winning the fourth season of American Idol, country singer Carrie Underwood arguably became one of the show's most successful competitors. After the show, Underwood released numerous hit singles and became the only country star in the 2000s to appear on the Billboard Top 100 at the number one slot. The song was "Inside Your Heaven."
From there, she's won seven Grammy Awards and is worth $140 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
James Durbin: $1.5 Million
James Durbin is a singer and guitar player who appeared on season ten of American Idol, where he came in fourth place. After the show, Durbin released three albums and joined the heavy metal band Quiet Riot, where he was the lead singer from 2017 until 2019.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Durbin's net worth is around $1.5 million.
Constantine Maroulis: $750,000
After coming in sixth during the fourth season of American Idol, Constantine Maroulis's career skyrocketed. Not only did he create his own independent label, but Maroulis also found himself on Broadway, landing the lead of Drew in Rock of Ages and receiving a Tony Award nomination for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, the singer is worth $750,000.
Kimberley Locke: $500,000
Kimberley Locke gained her fame while appearing on American Idol in 2003, coming in third place. Even so, she went on to sign a recording contract with Curb Records, releasing her debut album, One Love, in 2004.
From there, she's appeared on Celebrity Fit Club, Celebrity Ghost Stories, and co-hosting infomercials for kitchen appliances. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Locke is worth $500,000.
Kelly Clarkson: $45 Million
Kelly Clarkson was the first winner of American Idol and became one of the most popular singers to come out of the show. In 2002, Clarkson's first single, "A Moment Like This," became the best-selling single in the entire country.
Clarkson went on to release numerous albums, more hit singles, and won three Grammy Awards, all while accumulating a net worth of $45 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Taylor Hicks: $1 Million
After winning the fifth season of American Idol, Taylor Hicks signed a recording deal with Arista Records. Since then, he's released two albums and has performed on a few stages, including the Broadway stage as "Teen Angel" in Grease and as Charlie Anderson in Shenandoah.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Hicks has a net worth of $1 million.
Haley Reinhart: $1.5 Million
Haley Reinhart has made quite the career for herself after landing in third place on the tenth season of American Idol. After her elimination, Reinhart scored a recording contract with Interscope Records and became the first Idol alum to perform at the Lollapalooza music festival.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, the singer is worth $1.5 million.
Diana DeGarmo: $1.5 Million
Diana DeGarmo rose to fame after becoming the first runner-up on season three of American Idol. From there, she not only released a debut album but also ventured into stage acting, finding herself on both Broadway and off-Broadway productions, including the leads in both West Side Story and Hairspray.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, DeGarmo has a nice bank account of $1.5 million.
Bo Bice: $1.5 Million
During the fourth season of American Idol, Bo Bice became the runner-up behind Carrie Underwood. From there, he released his first solo album and began performing in the nightclub scene.
Since his time on the show, Bice has only released three albums. Even so, Celebrity Net Worth has his net worth at $1.5 million.
Adam Lambert: $35 Million
Powerhouse singer Adam Lambert was a contestant on the eighth season of American Idol, coming in as the runner-up. Even though Lambert didn't win the singing competition, he has made quite a career for himself.
Not only was he a recurring guest star on Glee, but Lambert has also been the lead vocalist for Queen + Adam Lambert since 2011! As of 2022, Lambert's net worth is a solid $35 million,
Clay Aiken: $4 Million
After coming in second during the second season of American Idol, Clay Aiken released music, created various foundations, and even jumped into politics. One of his foundations is called the National Inclusion Foundation, which supports "the integration of children with disabilities into the life environment of their non-disabled peers."
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Aiken is worth around $4 million.
David Archuleta: $5 Million
David Archuleta became the runner-up of American Idol season seven. While he's released a lot of music since his time on the show, Archuleta is also a very big philanthropist.
He's a huge supporter of the Dunkin' Brands Community Foundation, Do Something, and ChildFund International. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Archuleta is worth $5 million.
Ace Young: $1 Million
While Ace Young did not win the fifth season of American Idol, he still gained a whole lot of recognition for his time on the show. After being eliminated, Young went on to perform on MTV's Total Request Live, the first non-winning Idol member to do so.
Young also went to appear on Broadway in shows such as Grease and Hair. According to Celebrity Net Worth, the singer's worth is $1 million.
Josh Gracin: $2 Million
Josh Gracin went from being a United States Marine to becoming the fourth-runner-up on season two of American Idol. After being honorably discharged, Gracin signed a recording contract with Lyric Street Records, releasing a few top five hits in the process.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Gracin has been doing very well for himself, with a net worth of $2 million.
David Cook: $5 Million
In 2008, David Cook won the seventh season of American Idol and landed a recording contract with RCA. After releasing two albums with the record company, Cook opted to leave and become an independent artist.
The change worked out for Cook, as he started moving away from his "rock guy" persona and into something more personal. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he's worth around $5 million.
Ruben Studdard: $3 Million
Ruben Studdard rose to fame after winning the second season of American Idol. The very next year, he received a Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Grammy nomination for his recording of "Superstar."
From there, he appeared on The Biggest Loser and on Broadway in Ruben & Clay's Christmas Show. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Studdard is worth around $3 million.
Kris Allen: $3.5 Million
Kris Allen won the eighth season of American Idol and made a great career for himself. His debut self-titled album dropped at number 11 on the U.S. Billboard 200, his first of many albums.
In 2018, he joined some other Idol alums as a guest star on the American Idol Live! Tour, right before releasing "10," a catalog of reworked songs to commemorate the ten years since his Idol win. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Allen is now rolling with $3.5 million.
Mandisa Lynn Hundley: $14 Million
Even though Mandisa Lynn Hundley finished in ninth place during the fifth season of American Idol, she has done very well for herself. In 2014, she became one of five Idol alums to win a Grammy Award, hers for Best Contemporary Christian Music Album for Overcomer.
She's been nominated four other times! According to Net Worth Post, Hundley is doing very well for herself with $14 million.
Kellie Pickler: $7 Million
Even though Kellie Pickler came in sixth place during the fifth season of American Idol, she's made quite the name for herself. After signing with 19 Recordings and BNA Records, Pickler released four albums.
Pickler also won the sixteenth season of Dancing with the Stars and, in 2016, was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame. According to Celebrity Net Worth, Pickler's net worth is $7 million.
Kimberly Caldwell: $4 Million
While Kimberly Caldwell did not win the second season of American Idol, the show helped launch her media career. She landed a job as a correspondent on 54321, an entertainment and extreme sports program on Fox Sports Network.
Caldwell has covered numerous stories and events for the network and is worth around $4 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Scotty McCreery: $4 Million
Country music singer Scotty McCreery won the tenth season of American Idol and hopped right into making music. Since leaving the show, he's released five albums, the most recent release being in 2021 with Same Truck.
Outside of music, he's appeared on a few television shows, including Hart of Dixie and Five More Minutes, where he's credited with being the executive producer and writer. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he's worth $4 million.