There’s no doubt that it’s harder than ever to make a buck from your music these days. With a punishing economic climate, artists have been left to take what the market is offering, from innovative merch deals to more extensive touring schedules.

However, one less talked-about enterprise that a shocking number of prominent musicians have participated in is performing for corrupt dictators, their families, and their cronies, often pocketing millions for just one appearance.

The worst part of all this is that these aren’t exactly struggling artists we’re talking about here. In fact, some of the biggest stars in the world have been caught out performing for despotic leaders. Here are just a few.