American Idol judges 2023: Who are they and how much do they get paid?

Katy Perry earns how much?!

a split template showing American Idol judges Lionel Ritchie, Katy Perry and Luke Bryan in 2023
(Image credit: Getty)

The show wouldn't be anything without those colorful and comical American Idol judges.

Season 21 is upon us and already viewers have begun picking out their favorites - from Olivia Soli and Wé McDonald to Oliver Steele. Helping to narrow down the list of hopefuls to the 26 top singers are the 2023 American Idol judges - Katy Perry, Lionel Ritchie and Luke Bryan. Plus Katy and Lionel's replacement guest judges Ed Sheeran and Alanis Morisette.

All incredibly successful singer-songwriters in their own right, they've been a part of the judging panel since the show's comeback on ABC in 2018. From their music careers and awards to their net worth and American Idol judging salary - we've shared everything you need to know about the famous trio who listen to the contestants before they get cut.

American Idol judges 2023 - Lineup

1. Luke Bryan

a close up of American Idol judge Luke Bryan

(Image credit: Getty)

Age: 46 | Net worth: $40-50 million | Social Media: @lukebryan

Luke Bryan is an American country singer-songwriter, known for hits such as Country Girl (Shake it for me), Play It Again and That's My Kind of Night. He's one of the most successful country artists of the past decade, with 27 number one songs and 8.8 million monthly listens on Spotify

Bryan is married to wife Caroline Boyer, who have two sons together - Bo and Tate. The couple also look after his nephew Til and his two older sisters after Bryan's brother-in-law Ben Lee CHeshire died in 2014. His sister Kelly also passed away in 2017.

He joined American Idol in 2017. Forbes listed Bryan's net worth as $45.5 million in 2020. In January 2023, the Country star put his four-bedroom home in Santa Rosa, Florida on sale for $18 million.

2. Katy Perry

a close up of American Idol judge Katy Perry

(Image credit: Getty)

Age: 38 | Net worth: $330 million | Social Media: @katyperry

Katy Perry is an American singer-songwriter, known for hits such as Firework, California Girls and I Kissed a Girl. She's sold over 143 million records worldwide, has had 3 US Number 1 albums and has 52.3 million monthly listens on Spotify. She's also earnt a number of awards over the years including five Billboard Music Awards and five American Music Awards.

Perry is engaged to British actor Orlando Bloom. She gave birth to their first child together - daughter Daisy Dove Bloom in August 2020. The hitmaker was previously married to British comedian Russell Brand from 2010 up until their divorce in 2012.

Katy joined American Idol in 2017. Celebrity Net Worth estimates Perry's net worth as $330 million in 2023.

3. Lionel Ritchie

a close up of American Idol judge Lionel Ritchie

(Image credit: Getty)

Age: 73 | Net worth: $200 million | Social Media: @lionelritchie

Lionel Ritchie is an American singer, songwriter and record producer known for his solo career and hits with 1970s Motown group Commodores. His most famous songs include Easy, All Night Long, Dancing on the Ceiling and Three Times a Lady. During his over five decades in music, Ritchie has won four Grammy Awards and an Academy Award for Best Original Song for Say You, Say Me in 1986. He has 10.5. million monthly listens on Spotify.

Ritchie has been married twice - Brenda Harvey (1975-1993) and Diane Alexander (1995-2004). He's currently in a long-term relationship with Lisa Parigi, who he began dating in 2014. He has three children - adopted daughter Nicole Ritchie, plus daughter Sofia and son Miles Brockman from his second marriage to Alexander.

Lionel joined American Idol in 2017. Celebrity Net Worth estimates his net worth as $200 million in 2023.

American Idol judges - Over the years

  • Paula Abdul - Seasons 1-8
  • Simon Cowell - Seasons 1-9
  • Randy Jackson - Seasons 1-12
  • Kara DioGuardi - Seasons 8-9
  • Ellen DeGeneres - Season 9
  • Jennifer Lopez - Seasons 10-11 and seasons 13-15
  • Steven Tyler - Seasons 10-11
  • Mariah Carey - Season 12
  • Nicki Minaj - Season 12
  • Keith Urban - Seasons 12 -15
  • Harry Connick Jr. - Seasons 13-15
  • Luke Bryan - Season 16-present
  • Katy Perry - Season 16-present
  • Lionel Richie Season 16-present

How much do American Idol judges get paid?

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Katy Perry is the highest paid judge on American Idol, receiving $25 million. Luke Bryan takes home $12 million for his role, whilst Lionel Ritchie earns $10 million.

Katy Perry is officially the highest paid female judge in American Idol history. Having appeared on the show since 2018, Perry has amassed over $100 million over the years.

Forbes state that Luke Bryan's American Idol salary is $12 million - the same wage that Nicki Minaj received as a judge back in season 12. According to Page Six, this fee has increased since he first signed on for $7 million back in 2017.

The publication states that Lionel Ritchie also received a salary of $7 million in 2017. He was originally offered $2.5 million but negotiated to receive the same as Bryan. It's reported that Ritchie's current American Idol salary is $10 million. 

Simon Cowell is officially the highest paid judge of all time, receiving around $36 million for his role in the last few series. He left in 2010 and went on to launch the American version of The X Factor in 2011.

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Emily Stedman
Features Editor

Emily Stedman is the former Features Editor for GoodTo covering all things TV, entertainment, royal, lifestyle, health and wellbeing. Boasting an encyclopaedic knowledge on all things TV, celebrity and royals, career highlights include working at HELLO! Magazine and as a royal researcher to Diana biographer Andrew Morton on his book Meghan: A Hollywood Princess. In her spare time, Emily can be found eating her way around London, swimming at her local Lido or curled up on the sofa binging the next best Netflix show.