Music Business

Hip Hop Dominates Last Week’s Pandora Trendsetters Chart

1When it comes to trend setting music genres, hip hop appears to be cleaning up. According to the latest data from Pandora, seven of the top 10 artists on its Trendsetters Chart are rappers.


Guest Post by Emily Blake on Next Big Sound

As if its unrelenting influence on fashion, music and culture isn’t proof enough, the data confirms it: Hip-hop is the one setting the trends.

In fact, seven of the top 10 artists on the Trendsetters Chart this week are rappers. At #2 there’s Russ, the sometimes singer, sometimes rapper from Atlanta who has seen a 107.4% growth in radio spins this week and roughly 280,000 Pandora spins. Right behind him is D.R.A.M., the Virginia-bred artist who made his way into mainstream attention playing a piano in the back of a pickup truck while singing a song about broccoli that’s most definitely not about broccoli. While that song’s popularity is starting to taper off — the track’s seen a 19.4% dip in Pandora spins this week — the artist himself has seen a 19.2% increase in station adds over the past month.

There are two other budding Atlanta rappers on the chart, too: MadeinTYO, who found a hit in a very chilled-out ode to Uber, and Dae Dae, who’s seen a steady increase in popularity on Facebook and whose 2015 hit “Wat U Mean” is still killing it with a 22.3% increase in YouTube views this week.

Young M.A., a female rapper from Brooklyn, has a majority female following on Twitter.

Reigning at #1 is Young M.A., a Brooklyn rapper who, yes, is female but seems to have no interest in the “female rapper” moniker. Her breakout hit, the drowsy “OOOUUU,” was released in May, but it’s seen a 68.7 percent increase in Pandora spins this week. In the past month, she’s also seen enormous growth on social media across the board.

There’s also Famous Dex, the unapologetically goofy Chicago rapper who’s spent an impressive 18 weeks on the Trendsetters chart; and New Orleans’ $Uicideboy$, who have climbed from #19 to #10 in the past six weeks.

Of course, it isn’t all hip-hop, of course. Kiiara has maintained a strong presence on the chart for 13 weeks since her now-ubiquitous hit “Gold” started taking off. She’s currently at #4, down from her previous reign at#1.Icelandic rockers Kaleo, meanwhile, have continued a steady 20-week presence on the chart, this week at #6. As New York R&B artist Ro James wraps up his tour, he moves down to #9 this week, which marks his 20th week on the chart. And we also welcome Dylan Scott, a country artist who’s entering the chart at #20.

But let’s be honest: Right now, hip-hop has the stage. And in a year where Drake’s Views set streaming records with its explosive debut — moving 1.04 million equivalent album units in its first week alone — and Chance the Rapper is arguably single-handedly changing the rules to the Grammys, is anyone all that surprised?

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