Last Updated: January 22, 2024
Richest CelebritiesSingers
Net Worth:
$10 Million
Jan 19, 1949 - Sep 26, 2003 (54 years old)
5 ft 8 in (1.75 m)
Singer, Record producer, Musician, Singer-songwriter
💰 Compare Robert Palmer's Net Worth

What is Robert Palmer's Net Worth?

Robert Palmer was a British singer, songwriter and musician who had a net worth of $10 million at the time of his death. Robert Palmer earned international fame and fortune as a musician with a distinctive voice and rare ability to make eclectic mix of musical styles, combining soul, jazz, rock, pop, reggae and blues.

Palmer was born on January 19, 1949, in Batley, England. He spent the most of his childhood in Malta where his father served as a British naval intelligence officer. At the age of twelve, right after returning to England, he started learning guitar. In 1969 he joined a jazz rock group called "Data". They eventually signed to the Island Records label. The band released three albums: Vinegar Joe (1972), Rock 'n' Roll Gypsies (1972) and Six Star General (1973), before breaking up in March 1974. That same year, Palmer signed a solo deal with Island Records.

He saw the release of his first solo album "Sneakin' Sally through the Alley" in 1974. After he moved to New York with his wife and children he released "Pressure Drop" in 1975. He would eventually release eleven more studio albums, each leaving its own mark in the music world.

It was the 1978 "Double Fun" that broke Robert into the mainstream but it was his 1985 album "Riptide" that made Palmer a superstar. That album's lead single "Addicted to Love" was a massive hit, thanks in no small part to its memorable music video which was played non-stop on the new MTV. The song won him a Grammy. His next album, 1988's "Heavy Nova" featured the single "Simply Irresistible" which won him a second Grammy Award in 1988.

Unfortunately Robert Palmer died in a hotel in Paris, on September 26, 2003. The cause of his death was a heart attack. He was 54 years old.

Early Life

Palmer was born on January 19, 1949 in Yorkshire, England. When he was only a few months old, his family moved to Malta where his father worked in British naval intelligence. His family returned to the United Kingdom when Palmer was 12. He was heavily influenced by listening to jazz, soul, and blues music on the American Forces Radio which had been available in Malta.

The family moved to Scarborough when Palmer was a teenager. He attended Scarborough High School for Boys and joined his first band, the Mandrakes, at the age of 15. He then left school the following year to study at the Scarborough School of Art & Design, as he considered pursuing a career in art. He ultimately returned to music though.


Palmer's first break in the music industry came when singer Jess Roden left the band, The Alan Bown Set, in 1969. Palmer was invited to London to sing on the band's new single, "Gypsy Girl." After the single was successful, the vocals on the album the band had been working on with Roden were rerecorded by Palmer. The next year, in 1970, Palmer joined the 12-piece jazz-rock fusion band Dada and then the following year he formed the band Vinegar Joe with Elkie Brooks and Pete Gage. The band released three albums together.

In 1974, Palmer signed a solo deal with Island Records. His first solo album was released that year and was called "Sneakin' Sally Through the Alley." The album was record in New Orleans and did much better in the United States than in the UK. The next year, he released his next album, "Pressure Drop," which had stronger reggae influences. He toured with band Little Feat to promote the album.

His follow-up album, "Some People Can Do What They Like," was not very successful. Palmer then decided to move to Nassau, Bahamas to further refine his sound. In 1978, he released "Double Fun," a collection of Caribbean-inspired rock. The album reached the top 50 of the US Billboard charts and one of his singles, "Every Kinda People," made it into the top 20 singles charts.



His next album was a departure from his earlier sound, as at focused more on pure rock. The 1979 album, "Secrets," produced another top 20 single with "Bad Case of Loving You." The following year he released "Clues" which became popular both in the United States and in the United Kingdom. Due to its synth-wave sound, he was able to reach younger audiences. He replicated this success with the release of the EP "Some Guys Have All the Luck" in 1982.

As Palmer continued becoming more successful, he was also able to find more work as a producer. He worked with Jamaican ska legend Desmond Dekker on his 1981 album "Compass Point" and then helped produce the album of John Martyn a few years later.

In 1983, Palmer released the album "Pride." The same year, he performed with band Duran Duran at a charity concert and became friends with some of the members of the band. When Duran Duran went on hiatus in 1985, the band's guitarist, Andy Taylor, and bassist, John Taylor, joined Palmer to form the group, the Power Station. Former drummer for the band Chic, Tony Thompson, also joined.

The group released their eponymous album soon after. It did well on both sides of the Atlantic and produced the hits "Some Like It Hot" and "Get It On (Bang a Gong)." Palmer only performed with the band live one time for a "Saturday Night Live" performance. The band otherwise toured with singer Michael Des Barres while Palmer focused on his solo career.

Palmer recorded his album "Riptide" in 1985. It featured the single "Addicted to Love" which reached number 1 in the United States and number 5 in the United Kingdom and was prominently featured in the Tom Cruise film "Cocktail."

(Photo by Ebet Roberts/Redferns)

Later Career

Palmer then moved to Lugano, Switzerland to set up his own recording studio and began experimenting with bossa nova rhythms. He continued experimenting with the release of his 1990 album "Don't Explain." In 1994 he released the album "Honey" and then released a greatest hits album in 1995.

Throughout his career, Palmer received multiple Grammy Awards and nominations, as well as MTV Video Music Awards, and Brit Awards. He was also known for his style, voted by "Rolling Stone" as the best-dressed rock star in 1990.

Personal Life and Death

In 1969, Palmer met his future wife Sue at the Slough railway station. He was attracted to her because she was wearing a silver minidress with matching boots and reading a science fiction book. The two married two years later and had two children. The family moved to New York City in the mid-1970s and then to the Bahamas a few years later. They also spent some time living in Lugano, Switzerland. In 1993, the couple divorced. He did not remarry but did have a long-term relationship with Mary Ambrose.

In September of 2003, Palmer died from a heart attack while in Paris. He was 54 years old. Unlike other rock musicians, Palmer was not known for living a typical rock n' roll lifestyle as his only real vice was cigarettes. Following his death, a number of artists, including Duran Duran, paid tribute to him and his impact on the British music industry.

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.
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