Who knew playing the accordion would earn you the big bucks?
"Weird Al" Yankovic's net worth may not be what jumps to mind when you think of the parody singer. However, when you consider the prolific nature of the curly-haired crooner and his music, it’s not surprising he has made some serious bank from his hilarious tunes. With a career spanning decades, "Weird Al" has been able to reinvent himself along with the times, thanks to the fluid nature of his song styles.
Ask anyone around today and they can probably name at least one of Yankovic’s strange parodies, from "Fat" to "Inactive." His comedy stylings have also earned him his very own biopic in which Daniel Radcliffe portrays the nerdy comedian in Weird: The Al Yankovic Story which premiered in November 2022 on the Roku Channel. Quite the honor to have Harry Potter playing you!
Here is all you could ever want to know about “Weird Al” Yankovic’s net worth.
How did "Weird Al" become famous?
"Weird Al" was clever from the start, entering kindergarten a year earlier than the norm and even skipping the second grade. It probably won’t surprise you that he graduated from high school as the class valedictorian. During that time, Yankovic was obsessed with Southern California-based radio show Dr. Demento, despite his mother banning him from listening. His life would change forever when Dr. Demento himself spoke at the future singer’s high school, giving Yankovic the chance to pass along his own homemade cassette tape of original and parody songs to the radio host.
Surprisingly, Dr. Demento played the first song on the tape, “Belvedere Cruisin’,” on his radio show, giving the 16-year-old his first public exposure. While still studying architecture at California Polytechnic State University, Yankovic took a job as a disc jockey at KCPR, the radio station at the university. It was during his studies at California Polytech that the comedian earned the moniker “Weird Al,” though it was given to him derogatorily at first by peers in his dormitory who saw him as strange. Yankovic was perceived as an outcast, but decided to take on the name professionally for his radio persona, despite taking it as an insult at first. (Let this be a lesson, kids: What makes you weird will also make you successful!)
At the age of 19, he released his first recording, as Alfred Yankovic, “Take Me Down,” as part of the LP Slo Grown. The song poked fun at nearby famous landmarks like the waterfall toilets at the Madonna Inn and Bubblegum Alley as part of a benefit for the Economic Opportunity Commission of San Luis Obispo County.
Before his senior year, in mid-1979, Yankovic, inspired by the then-hit song The Knack’s “My Sharona,” recorded his parody “My Bologna” in the restroom across the hall from the radio station. He sent that single to Dr. Demento, who played it on the air, earning a positive reception. When The Knack played at "Weird Al"’s college, he took the opportunity to introduce himself to the band as the song’s author. The band’s lead singer, Doug Fieger, expressed his appreciation for the parody and suggested to the vice president of Capitol Records, Rupert Perry, that they release it as a single. As a result, Yankovic earned a six-month recording contract from the label and realized his future may be in comedic music and not architecture.
Yankovic appeared as a guest on the Dr. Demento Show in September of 1980 where he recorded a parody of Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust,” “Another One Rides the Bus.” The parody’s popularity earned him a TV appearance on The Tomorrow Show in 1981. That same year, he went on tour with Dr. Demento, during which time manager Jay Levey took an interest in the fledgling singer and held auditions to create a full band for him. The band began performing together in 1982.
Also in 1982, Yankovic recorded a parody of “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” titled “I Love Rocky Road,” which would become his first hit on Top 40 radio and earned him a deal with Scotti Brothers Records. The following year, his self-titled album was released by the label, churning out the hit single “Ricky” (a parody of “Mickey” by Toni Basil) and breaking into the top 100 music videos on a still-new MTV. It was the success of “Ricky” that led to him finally quitting his job as a mailroom clerk to pursue music full-time.
In 1984, his second album, “Weird Al” Yankovic in 3-D was released, with the first single being a parody of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It,” entitled “Eat It.” The single and its music video became extremely popular and solidified “Weird Al” as the king of parody songs and a bonafide bankable star. “Eat It” would reached No. 12 on the Billboard Hot 100, remaining his highest-charting single until 2006’s “White & Nerdy” reached No. 9. In 1984 as well, Yankovic started hosting Al TV specials on MTV, further establishing himself with the music video generation.
What is Weird Al Yankovic's net worth in 2022?
According to Celebrity Net Worth, "Weird Al" Yankovic’s net worth is $20 million as of 2022. He has earned this money for his comedic songs, both parodies and originals, as well as his live performances and work as an actor and music producer.
What is Suzanne Yankovic's net worth?
Suzanne Yankovic and “Weird Al” Yankovic have been married since 2001, just a few months after they first met. She is a marketing executive with 20th Century Fox. Suzanne Yankovic reportedly has a net worth of $1 million. Sounds like a pretty impressive lady!
How many "Weird Al" albums are there?
During his decades-long career, “Weird Al” has released 14 studio albums, nine compilation albums, 11 video albums, two EP records, two box sets, 46 singles and 54 music videos. Definitely "Pretty Fly for a Rabbi!"
How many Grammys does "Weird Al" have?
Since launching his music career in the late ‘70s, “Weird Al” has been nominated for 16 Grammys, winning five. How many accordion players can say that?
How many songs has "Weird Al" parodied?
“Weird Al” has recorded more than 150 songs in total, including both parodies and original songs. Considering the fact that he has recorded around 90 original songs, we can imagine his list of parodies is over 60, if not many more. Most of Yankovic's original songs also parody either a band or a specific style of music.
How many songs has "Weird Al" made?
“Weird Al” Yankovic has recorded over 150 songs in his lifetime. This includes both his parodies and his original songs.
How much money does "Weird Al" Yankovic make per year?
It has been reported that “Weird Al” Yankovic makes around $2.2 million per year. However, this number can vary depending on the number of projects that he is working on each year and whether or not he is touring.
How much does "Weird Al" make per show?
“Weird Al” has reportedly earned around $10 million from performing live concerts alone. It is not known exactly how much he makes per show, but we do know his booking fee for engagements can run from $75,000 to $149,999, so he most likely earns in that range per live performance.
How much does "Weird Al" Yankovic get paid per movie?
Musician “Weird Al” has not appeared in many movies. He starred in and co-wrote the 1989 movie industry satire UHF, which flopped at the box office but has since achieved cult status. He will also be making an appearance in his own satiric biopic, Weird: The Al Yankovic Story. We can imagine he’s most likely paid in the tens of thousands to the hundreds of thousands for his film appearances.