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MC Hammer: Overspending and IRS Debt

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When it comes to the tale of the one-hit wonder, no one can touch MC Hammer, real name Stanley Kirk Burrell. Hammer earned his success as a pop-rap artist with his uber-hit “U Can’t Touch This” — the first single by a rap artist to reach Billboard’s coveted Diamond status. Somewhat less profitably, he popularized shiny harem pants, or “hammer pants.”

Hammer’s hit single earned him some serious bank. He pocketed a reported $33 million at the peak of his success in 1991. But over-the-top spending on luxury cars, a record company, airplanes and a $30 million home that he built from the ground up — which eventually sold for less than $7 million — ate into his fortune. He filed for bankruptcy in 1996 and would continue to owe the IRS thousands in back taxes for the next 20 years. Despite a current net worth of $1.5 million, his debt to the government of $800,000 remains unpaid, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

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