Patrick Ryan of USA Today reports:

Rock is no longer the top dog in music.

For the first time ever, R&B/hip-hop has surpassed rock to become the biggest music genre in the U.S. in terms of total consumption, according to Nielsen Music’s 2017 year-end report.

Eight of the 10 most listened-to artists of the year came from the R&B/hip-hop genre, led by Drake, with 4.8 million album equivalent units (combined album sales, song downloads and streams), and Kendrick Lamar (3.7 million). Rap also experienced the second-highest growth of any genre, spiking 25% over 2016 and coming in just behind Latin music, which was up 30% in total volume.

Hip-hop dominated the charts in 2017, with viral hits such as Lil Uzi Vert’s XO Tour Llif3, Future’s Mask Off and Post Malone’s Congratulations ranking among the 10 best-selling tracks of last year, according to BuzzAngle Music and Mediabase. Rap up-and-comers Cardi B (Bodak Yellow) and Migos (Bad and Boujee) each spent multiple weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 with their respective singles, while four of the five Grammy nominees for album of the year were R&B or hip-hop artists.

More insights from Nielsen about the year in music:

* Streaming now accounts for 54% of total audio consumption, composing the majority of audio consumption for the first time ever. (For comparison, streams accounted for 38% of total audio consumption in 2016 and a mere 22% in 2015.)

* 19 songs surpassed 500 million streams in 2017; of those, 17 came from the R&B/hip-hop genre.

* Despite rap’s dominance on streaming platforms, rock continues to be the biggest genre for album sales, accounting for 35% of all albums sold.

* Vinyl LP sales were up 9% from 2016 and now account for 14% of all physical albums sold. The most popular? The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, thanks in part to a deluxe anniversary reissue on vinyl.

Read more at USA Today.

source: usatoday.com

41 Responses

  1. …and Rap still sucks. Always has, always will. I saw the halftime entertainment during last night’s great College Football Championship game, and it was a “performance” by some rap guy. What a disgrace by the network to put that halftime garbage on national television.

    1. I remember when I first heard the Sugar Hill Gang, and Run DMC, my reaction was, “What is this? They aren’t even trying to sing.” But, when one compares that early genre, and even some later “artists” like Young MC, Tone Loc, and even Rob Base and DJ EZ-Rock (It Takes Two), it sounds like Mozart compared to Rap of the last three decades.

    2. Sugar Hill Gang’s “White Lines” was ok. Only because of that bass line, and it was actually a real bass being played! Not a f–king machine! And I wouldn’t really call it “rap” because there was a lot of singing in that song, with a positive message. Nothing about bitch-slapping anybody, or bitching and complaining about everything! In 1983, what was called rap was tolerable, for the most part. Today, no f–king way! It ALL sucks today!

    3. That song wasn’t Sugar Hill Gang, it was Grandmaster Flash-LOL. I had to look up the artist, but I definitely knew it was not Sugar Hill Gang. Sugar Hill Gang’s other “hit” was Eighth Wonder.

      The only reason why I knew this, is because, I was a cheerleader in middle school for the basketball team (don’t ask-LOL). They played that song at darn song at EVERY game. By the end of the year, I knew every word-LOL! “Clap your hands everybody, everybody just clap your hands. Fly girls clap your hands, fly boys clap your hands.” See? LOL!!

    4. Let’s see if I remember this correctly. Wasn’t Grandmaster Flash, The Furious Five, and Melle Mel all part of the Sugar Hill Gang? I Know the 12″ was on Sugar Hill Records, that I remember for sure, embarrassed to say it now, but I used to have that 12″, – the only “rap” song I ever bought! Great bassline!

    5. That’s where I got confused, now I remember the label on the 12″ just said Sugar Hill. “White Lines” (Don’t Don’t Do It) – Grandmaster & Melle Mel. I knew there was a Sugar Hill in there somewhere, just got the Gang and Records mixed up, oh well, I got 2 out of 3 right! Do I still get a prize? LOL!!! 😉

    6. Wait a minute, I just remembered I do have another rap song in my vinyl collection, took me over an hour to find the 45. “Rappin’ Rodney” – Rodney Dangerfield! The cover has Rodney holding a boombox on his right shoulder, with a butt in his mouth! I held on to this record, just for laughs! – “I was an ugly kid I never had fun (No respect, no respect) They took me to a dog show and I won! (No respect, no respect) My car broke down I called triple A, (No respect, no respect) they left my car and towed me away!” LOL!!! I guess I’m just an old school fool, but it’s cool! 😉 Cheers!

    1. I tried looking it up, but could not find a definitive answer.

      My own best guess, Pop artists are likely to make the most money. However, Guns N’ Roses cleaned up, and I am sure made far more money, than most Rap acts out on the road.

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