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

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  • robert davenport on

    as a follow up to my earlier comment, I do not dislike newer metal and hard rock bands , i’m just waiting for something truly timeless , a song or an album that is really great – I stand by my opinion on the look the older 80’s hard rock and metal bands continue to use – totally ridiculous – also I started to buy vinyl again put together a nice system and I am not going to listen for free anymore – I will be buying my music from now on –

  • nick look on

    Robert it’s not the 1980’s anymore time to get out of the past.

    • robert davenport on

      nick that’s exactly what i’m saying ! !

  • shannon mehaffey on

    There are young musicians now who put so much time and effort into their craft, it’s scary. You’ve got bands now that emerge from the club or the garage that are ready for prime time. This is a turnaround from the 90s when bands went out of their way not to practice as a way to get a different sound. There will never be a golden age like we had, but these young bands are really trying to put something out that has some vitality. The audience and the musicians are still there, it’s smaller, but the passion is still there. I would never say something to the effect of telling these younger bands that I’d seen this before…sure, the forwardness of their music is now merely incremental, but in that very narrow area, these musicians are busting their brains out trying to come up with something interesting.

    • robert davenport on

      you are right , i’m searching for it , and waiting to hear it , please turn me on to some of these bands your talking about

    • shannon mehaffey on

      Failure Anthem, Code Orange, Avatar, Butcher Babies, Power Trip, and BVB-I’ve seen all but the last two live, and Code Orange may not be your thing, maybe none of them are, but, they sure did go all out to put on an original show in 2017 when the proposition of originality is near impossible. Any hard rock band that goes to that much trouble to put on their own show in this era gets my endorsement. These bands had total commitment.

  • T on

    Learning an instrument is difficult, writing original music is difficult, writing something that someone else wants to hear is even more difficult, and you can sell a million albums and still be essentially broke. Telling a story over music that has already been made popular years ago is much easier, and requires much less (if any) talent. It just makes me appreciate the incredible songs and artists that we had the good fortune to see and enjoy listening to. I love when I see a young person taking the time to learn a real guitar, and not play it on the tv/computer.

  • nick look on

    Plus modern radio format sucks these days, they rather stay with the stupid over played songs and not support new stuff. I think some modern bands are doing just fine, like Slipknot, Five Finger, Avenged Sevenfold. I’ve heard opinions from the old timers oh that’s not music. Blah blah. Save it. Us in rock music and metal don’t get our due we are shunned by the mainstream. Plus I thank this PC snowflake society we live in. Plus the age of social internet isn’t helping.

    • Dana on

      Guess that applies to me, Nick,

      I am totally bogged down in the 80’s, and that is because there have been very few newer bands, whose sound even piques my interest.

      Also, the few “newer” bands that I do like, have a classic, vintage 70’s/80’s sound. I find the new rock, and metal, sound very unappealing, but to each their own.

      D 🙂

    • Doug R. on

      Put me in that category, Dana, us old farts gotta stick together! 😉 LOL!

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