Toni Braxton is in bankruptcy trouble, as reported at TMZ. The R&B singer, who turns 43 years of age today, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in California.
Toni Braxton owes way more than she’s worth
According to Braxton, she may be up to $50 million in debt, to everyone from AT&T to Neiman Marcus to The Internal Revenue Service to Tiffany & Co., yet she’s worth only between $1 million and $10 million. Toni Braxton has filed for bankruptcy before, back in 1998. How did it happen? How did a woman who has sold 40 million records get into so much debt?
Is she a spendthrift? Did she spend too much at Neiman’s and Tiffany? Some critics say it is indeed her expensive tastes. In the article Celebrity Bankruptcy: Fame and Misfortune, Catherine Brock writes of Toni Braxton’s bankruptcy in 1998, “One report claims Braxton squandered $2.5 million on makeup, hair, clothing, personal appearances, and other indulgences.”
But Braxton claims that when she got into trouble back in 1998, extravagance wasn’t the reason. “It’s my life, and I have to take responsibility for it. People don’t understand this business; a lot of my personal money went into tours. You never get out of the red. Every light bulb, costume, band member, hotel, gas for the tour bus, airplane ticket–everybody has to be paid, and the artist has to pay them. In this business, the product–the artist–pays for everything, and then [we] get what’s left over.”
Toni Braxton files for bankruptcy, but can she make a comeback?
Toni Braxton sold millions of records in the 90’s with her debut album Toni Braxton and her second album Secrets. But record sales have not been as great for the star since. Her latest album Pulse reached moderate success, but the 20th century diva can’t carry it into today. As reported at the Los Angeles Times, “Still, with its sleek digital beats and in-your-face lyrics, Braxton’s new Pulse has the something-to-prove quality of a comeback record; much of it sounds like her attempt to keep up with the Rihannas and the Beyoncés currently ruling the R&B roost.”
The top may be over for Toni Braxton, which makes it difficult to live the high life. Says Catherine Brock, “Being a star doesn’t mean that you can have astronomically high ongoing expenses. If it does, you could wind up in a meteoric freefall, and end up crashing in bankruptcy court.” And in Braxton’s case – twice.
Toni Braxton — Bankrupt Again, May Owe $50 Mil, TMZ
Album review: Toni Braxton’s ‘Pulse’, Los Angeles Times
Joy Bennett Kinnon, The Rise and Fall and Rise of Toni Braxton – Interview, BNET
Catherine Brock, Celebrity Bankruptcy: Fame and Misfortune , Mortgage Loan