Famous for the classic hit “Ice, Ice Baby,” Vanilla Ice is among the most recognizable icons of the ’90s. The American musician, rapper, actor, and TV host has shown the world his n-ice work since the early ’90s. And decades later, he still is worth millions.
Ever since the release of his debut studio album “Hooked” in the late 1980s, Vanilla Ice has been in the limelight. And now, he has become recognized globally. As of 2022, Vanilla Ice’s net worth stands at $12 million.
This post will discuss how Vanilla Ice reached such fame and fortune — and how he’s still maintaining his riches years later.
Born on October 31, 1967, Robert Matthew Van Winkle, or “Vanilla Ice,” is an iconic 90s star behind the classic hit “Ice, Ice Baby.” Aside from rapping, he also acts and appears in several TV shows.
Vanilla Ice has released several albums since the late 1980s, boasting a net worth of $12 million.
The journey began for Van Winkle at a young age when he started performing in malls as a street performer. A manager from a local nightclub in Dallas saw his potential and invited the young boy to be a regular performer. From there, he began opening acts.
But it wasn’t until he released “Ice, Ice Baby” that he experienced mainstream success. And since then, Vanilla Ice has released several albums. Although each successive title wasn’t as successful as his debut studio album, Vanilla Ice continues to perform today.
Later in his career, Vanilla Ice resorted to acting and reality TV, appearing in many shows. And that’s how the 90s icon maintained his fortune and fame till today.
Robert Matthew Van Winkle was born in Dallas, Texas, on the 31st of October in 1967. His surname comes from the man his mother married when he was born. It wasn’t long until his mom divorced that man, but she decided to let him have his surname.
Van Winkle never met his biological father, but he wasn’t too lonely in childhood. After all, his mom remarried, giving him a stepfather and a chance to travel between Miami and Dallas. His stepdad worked in Miami, where Van Winkle sometimes went with him to the state.
The energetic Van Winkle learned to breakdance in his early teens and got into hip-hop. His closest friends gave him the stage name we know today, “Vanilla Ice.” Although Van Winkle hated the nickname, it stuck with him.
When he turned 16, Van Winkle began participating in rap battles under MC Vanilla. And it was at this age that the young rapper wrote his iconic song “Ice, Ice Baby.”
Despite his passion for dancing and hip-hop, he didn’t neglect his studies and soon graduated from high school in 1985. And it was at this time he got into motocross, winning three championships. The young Van Winkle considered making it a career, but he broke his ankle during one race and lost interest.
While recovering from his ankle injury, Van Winkle honed his beatboxing and dancing skills as a street performer. One night, during one of his many gigs, Van Winkle performed at a nightclub, where the club’s manager asked the young boy if he wanted to become a regular performer. And from there, Van Winkle opened for several acts like Paula Abdul and Tone Loc.
Vanilla Ice started performing in small acts, joining the “Stop the Violence Tour” in the 1980s. From there, his manager saw potential in him, encouraging the rapper to pursue music. In 1989, Vanilla Ice released two singles under the independent label Ichiban Records. He released “Play that Funky Music” as the A-side and the biggest hit in his career, “Ice, Ice Baby,” on the other.
A radio DJ from Georgia accidentally played “Ice, Ice Baby” instead of Vanilla Ice’s first single. And this was when the rapper experienced mainstream success. After all, everyone loved the track!
His B-side single became the biggest hit in his career, so much so that other artists envied Vanilla Ice. According to the rapper, fellow rapper Suge Knight threatened to sign the rights to “Ice, Ice Baby to him,” telling him he’ll throw the rapper off his hotel balcony if he didn’t. And Vanilla Ice did it, whereas Knight shortly used the money to finance the record label “Death Row.”
Fortunately, Vanilla Ice saw more success in his music career, with his debut album, “To the Extreme,” becoming the quickest-selling hip-hop album ever. It topped the charts for 16 weeks straight, earning Vanilla Ice his well-deserved spot in the limelight. After that, Vanilla Ice released more studio albums, the last being in 2011.
When he’s not working on his music, Vanilla Ice collaborates with other artists or makes tracks for films. Notably, the rapper contributed to the soundtrack of the childhood classic, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II.” And in 1991, Vanilla Ice got paid $1 million to appear in the lead role in the film “Cool as Ice.”
Vanilla Ice resorted to reality TV as his involvement in the music industry dwindled. He has since then starred in several shows.
Despite marrying long-time sweetheart Laura Giaritta in 1997, Vanilla Ice is most famous for dating iconic singer Madonna for eight months between 1991 and 1992. Vanilla Ice and his wife are still married and had two daughters, first in 1998 and then in 2000.
Although Vanilla Ice is famous for his energetic and robust personality, the rapper attempted suicide via heroin overdoses in 1994. But he got saved by his closest friends, and then he decided to redeem himself by taking a break from music.
In 1995, Vanilla Ice focused on motocross and jet skiing, where he impressively ranked as the 6th best sit-down jet ski racer, competing each weekend. And this also earned him a Kawasaki sponsorship.
Last year, his wife, Laura Giaritta, filed for divorce, commencing a lengthy case. As of 2022, the two are still legally married.
What is Vanilla Ice Net Worth?
Vanilla Ice, as of 2022, has a net worth of over $12 million, which is surprising for a one-hit-wonder.
Although most of his fortune comes from royalties connected to his biggest hit, “Ice, Ice Baby,” Vanilla Ice also earns a decent amount from his appearances on TV shows and films. And despite the downfall of his music career, Vanilla Ice is still touring worldwide.
The rapper joined the iconic “I Love the 90’s Tour,” performing alongside other 90s icons like Coolio. And he sometimes also performs on stage. Moreover, Vanilla Ice got a hefty sum from private performances, where he famously held a concert for Donald Trump’s birthday in 2020.
How Does Vanilla Ice Make Money?
Once Vanilla Ice’s peak craze between 1990 and 1991 in music ended, he started finding work in reality TV. His television debut was on VH1’s “The Surreal Life,” where the rapper started a feud with Gary Coleman. And people liked him so much that Vanilla Ice made several more appearances in many shows,
He, of course, gets royalties from his appearances, earning as much as $100k per episode.
As unbelievable as it may sound, Vanilla Ice is a massive theater kid. The rapper has acted in many plays, notably Captain Hook in a rendition of the classic kid’s movie “Peter Pan.” Vanilla Ice was the second celeb ever to act in the role in the play, replacing Henry Winkler.
Although Vanilla Ice hasn’t played a leading role since his docu-film “Cool as Ice,” he has featured in some flicks. Most notably, the rapper appeared in legendary comedian Adam Sandler’s “That’s My Boy” in 2012. And he also appeared in several films, acting in minor roles.
Vanilla Ice joined the famous “I Love the 90s Tour” in 2017, joining classic 90s stars like Coolio. The rapper became a regular feature since his tour debut and had been headlining it ever since. And he also recently confirmed three upcoming concerts, for which he’ll likely get paid a lot.
Vanilla Ice also offers private performances for the right price, and former president Donald Trump took advantage of this and hired the rapper to perform at two of his parties in 2020. He played at Mar-a-Lago for the former president’s birthday.
Ever since his biggest hit, “Ice, Ice Baby, Vanilla Ice never saw massive success in his music. But despite this, the rapper continues to record and perform live. And though Vanilla Ice hasn’t released a new album since a decade ago, he still makes and releases solo tracks.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is rapper vanilla ice net worth today?
A: As of 2022, the Ice, Ice Baby star’s net worth stands at $12 million. Although labeled as a one-hit wonder, Vanilla Ice still makes millions today. And the rapper, TV host, and actor still earns around $800k a year. Most of that comes from royalties connected to his biggest hit, “Ice, Ice Baby.”
Q: How is vanilla ice still so rich in 2023?
A: Although his music career has died down, Vanilla Ice is active in film and TV work. He often plays as himself, cashing in on his tenure as one of the most famous 90’s icons. And in 2017, the rapper became a regular feature in “I Love the 90’s Tour,” featuring other artists like Coolio. Finally, Vanilla Ice is still active and touring worldwide.
Q: Is vanilla ice still married?
A: Vanilla ice is still with his first wife, Laura Giaritta, and the two tied the know in 1997. The two welcomed two daughters, one born in 1998 and the other in 2000. Despite being in the limelight, they hadn’t known about any issues in their relationship with the public.
Q: How many records did vanilla ice sold so far?
A: Throughout his career, vanilla ice has sold over 8 million albums. 95% of the sales were from the United States alone, and over 300k from the UK. His best-selling title is “To the Extreme,” selling over 8.09 million copies.
Q: Does vanilla ice still perform live today?
A: Although not as active in the music scene, vanilla ice still performs and tours worldwide. The ’90s icon is currently touring across three countries and recently confirmed three more concerts.
What is vanilla ice net worth? Earning millions from his biggest hit, “Ice, Ice Baby,” alone, it’s no wonder the 90’s star is still relevant today. When he’s not making icy tracks, the rapper often appears in TV shows. And he has also acted in minor roles in some films, such as “Cool as Ice.”
Vanilla Ice is still touring worldwide and gets booked for private events. Although many dub him a one-hit wonder, he’s still kicking, making bank decades later.
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