Gunna just released his latest album, WUNNA, on Friday, May 22, 2020, a New Moon in Gemini, an air sign represented by twins. Astrological connections abound for Gunna, a Gemini, not only because on the music charts he is now the brightest star shining in the sky, but also because his album concept is based on astrology. His twin alter ego, Wunna, has even created an entire website to read your horoscope and guide you to the album. Whether or not you check your chart on Co-Star, Gunna’s creation of Wunna, as an album, alter ego, and astrologer, all contribute to his success on this week’s music charts.
According to Music Maven’s proprietary technology, which provides the most current and accurate data on the performance of all artists and songs in daily music charts, because of WUNNA, Gunna is now by far the Most Streamed Artist, with 13.5M streams, and is the Highest Earning artist at $44K on the album’s release day. Compared to last week, this is lower than that of a fellow Atlanta area rapper, Future, who topped the charts with the release of High Off Life with 19.6M streams, and now is at third place with only 5M streams.
After Gunna, DaBaby holds second place for Most Streamed Artist with 5.5M streams, even without a new album this week or last. DaBaby’s latest, BLAME IT ON BABY appeared last April 17, and it prepared the way for a hit, “ROCKSTAR,” featuring Roddy Ricch, the king of this year’s song charts with “The Box.” “ROCKSTAR” has been the Most Streamed Song every single day since May 11, except May 19 and 23 when it went from number 1 to number 2, now at 2.6M daily streams.
Music Maven’s data and analytics on the success of artists like Gunna, Future, and DaBaby, this week, last week, and last month, proves that despite the global pandemic and all of the economic and technological changes affecting the music industry, the full-length studio album is still the surest path for artists’ success atop the music charts. Even without a number 1 single, a complete album with hot and not-so-hot tracks has the power to generate more total streams and revenue for artists than otherwise.
Take Gunna’s latest album, with its most popular songs, “COOLER THAN A BITCH,” featuring Roddy Ricch, and “DOLLAZ ON MY HEAD,” featuring Young Thug. Neither of those songs are in the top 5 most streamed, but along with the 18 total tracks on WUNNA, including the album title track single released on April 9, the total streams and revenue from the album have taken Gunna to the top of the artist streaming and revenue charts.
Compare this to 3 other recent top songs and the overall performance of their artists:
- On May 8, the weekend before last, Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber released “Stuck With U,” which hit number 1 with most streams on it first 2 days, but which has plunged to number 21 since. Not once did this song bring either artist to the top 5 Most Streamed Artists. Even with a new hit song this weekend with Lady Gaga, Grande is sunk at number 25. “Stuck With U” left Bieber stuck in the 30s and he is now trapped at number 32.
- Their main antagonist of late, Tekashi 6ix9ine, has not done much better. His song “GOOBA,” also released on May 8, while at home under federal house arrest, stayed in the top 5 in streams for its first week out. However, in the last days the song has gone out of the top 10 and is now only number 15 for streams. Without more than that one song, Tekashi never broke into the top 10 most Streamed Artists, and is now right below Bieber at number 33.
- Lady Gaga’s release of “Rain On Me,” featuring Ariana Grande, on Friday, May 22, quickly became the Most Streamed Song with 3.1M streams. However, that song only brought Gaga to the number 8 position among Most Streamed Artists. Once she releases her long-awaited and long-delayed Chromaticashe will likely rise to the top 5 or higher, but so far, her latest hit with Ariana Grande has barely allowed her to break into the top 10.
This analysis of this weekend’s and recent trends tracked by Music Maven demonstrates that artists still need full-length studio albums to rise and sustain themselves atop the charts for Most Streamed Artists, and that singles are not nearly enough to do so. It also proves that considering single-song performance alone is an insufficient and inaccurate chart metric because it does not reveal the overall performance of artists.
Nor does social media presence — as measured by Instagram likes, Twitter retweets, YouTube views, or TikTok hashtags — necessarily raise or sustain artists or their singles on streaming or revenue charts unless they have an album to show for it.
Only a comprehensive perspective — as provided by Music Maven’s charts for the Most Influential, Most Streamed, and Highest Earning Artists, as well as its song stream and revenue charts — provides a true view of artists’ success.
Visit musicmaven.com for latest music industry charts.
By Vince, May 24, 2020