Last Updated: May 11, 2023
Richest CelebritiesRock Stars
Net Worth:
$14 Million
Date of Birth:
Jun 6, 1961 (62 years old)
Place of Birth:
Viña del Mar
Singer, Musician, Bassist, Songwriter, Actor
United States of America
💰 Compare Tom Araya's Net Worth
Table of ContentsExpand
  1. Early Life
  2. Career
  3. Personal Life

What is Tom Araya Net Worth?

Tom Araya is a Chilean-American musician who has a net worth of $14 million. Tom Araya began playing bass when he was eight years old. He and his older brother would often play music together with Tom on the bass and Cisco on the guitars. During the 1980s, Araya became a certified respiratory therapist and soon after joined Slayer. His therapy work paid for the group's first record, "Show No Mercy", in 1983, and within two years, he quit his hospital job to tour with the band. He contributed numerous lyrics to the band, most about his fascination with serial killers, including Jeffrey Dahmer and Ed Gein. His song "Eyes of the Insane" won a Grammy Award. Slayer has sold more than three million copies of their ten studio albums. In 2006, Araya underwent gall bladder surgery, which delayed the band's tour and album release. Four years later, his back surgery disrupted another Slayer tour. In 2011, he was given the keys to his hometown. Araya is considered one of the top 100 Greatest Metal Vocalists of All-Time by "Hit Parader".

Early Life

Tom Araya was born on June 6, 1961 in Vińa del Mar, Chile and given the name Tomás Enrique Araya Diaz. His family moved to the United States when he was five years old. After his older brother began playing the guitar, he started to learn how to play bass at the age of eight. The two played Beatles and Rolling Stones songs together to develop their musical skills. After finishing high school, Araya's older sister enrolled in a program to become a respiratory therapist. His father insisted that Araya also enroll in the course unless he were to find a job. Araya decided to enroll in the two-year technical course where he learned about air mixture rations, to draw blood, and to intubate. He successfully completed the program and began working as a respiratory therapist. During this whole time, he continued playing music and improving his skills on the bass.


In 1981, Araya was approached by Kerry King and asked to join his band, Slayer. Araya accepted the offer and financed the band's 1993 debut album with his earnings from his job as a respiratory therapist. The album, "Show No Mercy," resulted in a tour. Araya requested time off from his employer, the Brotman Medical Center, in order to join the band's first European tour in 1984. However, his request was denied. After a month of sporadically attending his shifts, he was told he may be fired if he did not begin showing up more consistently. Faced with these threats, he chose to quit the job to devote his full attention to the band. Since then, Araya has become one of the two original members to remain in Slayer throughout the band's entire career from 1981 to 2019.

In June of 1984, Slayer released a three-track EP called "Haunting the Chapel" which featured darker and more thrash-oriented style than their first album. It set the foundation for the future direction of the band and the EP's opening track, "Chemical Warfare," has since become a live staple at nearly every show since 1984. Later that year, the band recorded the live album "Live Undead" in New York City. The following year, Slayer toured with bands Venom and Exodus. They also played shows with Megadeath, Destruction, D.R.I., Possessed, Agent Steel, and Nasty Savage.

Tom Araya

Kevin Winter/ Getty Images

The band released their second full-length album in March of 1985. The album, "Haunting of the Chapel," features songs about hell and Satan. The album become a hit with fans and won a number of awards from the British magazine "Metal Forces." The band was later offered a recording contract with Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin's Def Jam Records. Slayer accepted the deal and their third album, "Reign in Love," displayed much cleaner production and faster and shorter songs. However, Def Jam's distributor, Columbia Records, refused to release the album due to the song "Angel of Death," which detailed Holocaust concentration camps and the human experiments conducted by the Nazi physician Josef Mengele. The album was subsequently distributed by Geffen Records but was not featured on the company's release schedule. Although the album received virtually no radio airplay, it became the band's first to enter the Billboard 200 and went on to be certified gold in the United States.

Slayer continued growing in popularity throughout the rest of the 1980s and into the 1990s. However, there was some inner turmoil in the band and a shakeup of the lineup, though Araya remained steady in the band throughout all this time. Araya has contributed greatly to the songwriting of the band. His interest in serial killers has served as inspiration for many of his lyrics including for the songs "213" and "Dead Skin Mask." He also wrote the lyrics for the Grammy Award-winning song "Eyes of the Insane" from the 2006 album "Christ Illusion."

Araya has endorsed Marshall amplifiers and ESP guitars. He was one of the first bassists to have a signature ESP bass series.

Personal Life

Araya lives in Buffalo, Texas where he owns a ranch with his wife Sandra and their two children, Ariel and Tomas. The ranch has over 60 head of cattle in addition to other ranch animals and the couple chose to homeschool their children. Araya is a practicing Roman Catholic and has pushed back against the misconception that Slayer was somehow affiliated with worshipping Satan. He has stated that the band used satanic imagery in order to scare people.

Araya has had a few health issues in his later years. In 2006, he underwent gallbladder surgery. He also suffers from sleep apnea and uses a CPAP machine at home. In 2010, Araya had to go through a neck surgery after headbanging while playing bass for many years. After the operation, he could no longer play so dramatically and had to use a special belt while playing the bass in order to avoid straining his neck while playing.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
Did we make a mistake?
Submit a correction suggestion and help us fix it!
Submit a Correction