U.S. music streams on services like Spotify Technology, Apple Music and Alphabet’s YouTube rose 30% last year to top one trillion for the first time, according to Nielsen Music’s annual report.
Streaming services currently account for 82% of music consumption in the U.S., according to Nielsen. Sales of physical albums, meanwhile, dropped off 19% in 2019 and now make up just 9% of overall music consumption, which hs been fueled by big releases from artists like Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish and Post Malone.
The year also saw the rise of the social video-sharing app TikTok, which helped spark viral hits. Lil Nas X’s country-rap hit “Old Town Road” became meme fodder on the app early last year and was the most-consumed song of 2019, with 2.5 billion on-demand streams. It also became the record holder for most weeks spent atop the Billboard Hot 100.
Hip-hop, which has risen in popularity along with music-streaming, continued its reign as the biggest genre, with a 28% share of total listening, followed by rock at 20% and pop at 14%. Rapper Post Malone, whose albums have broken various streaming records, was the top artist of 2019 by a combination of sales and streams. Drake, Eilish, Swift and Ariana Grande round out the top five.