On Saturday, Little Richard passed away, leaving behind a legacy that most artists can only dream of. The rock 'n' roll icon left behind a considerable fortune as well, according to a report by CelebrityNetWorth. His total net worth is estimated at $40 million.
Little Richard is considered one of the "founding fathers of rock 'n' roll," and spent about six decades touring, releasing records and performing at massive industry events. For that reason, it should come as little surprise that he leaves behind an estimated $40 million for his family. That money includes his properties and assets, as well as the earnings from his iconic music over the years. However, Little Richard himself has admitted that his fortune could be even greater if he had taken more care with his money in the early days of his career.
According to his biography, The Life and Times of Little Richard — written by Charles White in 2003 — Little Richard began his career as a teetotaler in the 1950s. He even went so far as to fine his bandmates for drug and alcohol use, feeling that it was unprofessional. However, by the mid-1960s, he had picked up habits of drinking, smoking and marijuana use. By the early 1970s, he was addicted to cocaine as well.
At the height of his addiction, Little Richard was reportedly spending about $1,000 per day on drugs. His habits expanded to heroin and PCP as well. Little Richard said that he would go to any lengths to get cocaine, saying: "I lost all my reasoning."
Little Richard left drugs and alcohol behind in the late 1970s when he returned to the church. He became a born again Christian following the deaths of his brother, his nephew and two close friends, at least one of which was reportedly apparently related to drugs.
Despite this dark period, Little Richard leaves behind a large inheritance for Danny Jones Penniman, his adopted son. Richard knew Danny's family through church, and adopted him when Danny's parents passed away, along with his then-wife, Ernestine Harvin. He and Danny always remained close, with Danny often acting as one of Richard's bodyguards.
So far, details on Little Richard's cause of death and arrangements for his funeral have not been revealed. With the ongoing coronavirus crisis, many public memorial services are being delayed, so there is no telling when and how the world will say goodbye to the late music icon.