Report: Music Streaming Grew 30 Percent in the U.S. Last Year

Posted on January 10, 2020 by Paul Thurrott in Music + Videos, Spotify, YouTube, YouTube Music with 13 Comments

According to Neilsen, music streaming services grew 30 percent in the U.S. last year and hit one trillion streams for the first time.

I can’t find the original report, but it was covered by The Wall Street Journal, which notes that 82 percent of music consumption in the United States now comes from music streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube. Meanwhile, sales of physical albums fell 19 percent to just 9 percent of the market in 2019 in a blow to hipsters.

Neilsen says that rapper Post Malone was the top act of 2019, and Drake, Billie Eilish, Taylor Swift, and Ariana Grande rounded out the top five. The top three albums by stream and purchase were Post Malone’s “Hollywood’s Bleeding,” Billie Eilish’s “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”, and Taylor Swift’s “Lover,” in that order.

Meanwhile, hip-hop was the top genre last year, with a 28 percent share, Neilsen claims. Rock landed at 20 percent, and pop came in third with 14 percent.

Rolling Stone, which uses a different set of data, separately claimed that CD sales and digital downloads “tanked” in 2019, while streaming’s growth started slowing last year. That makes sense, given its dominant share: At this point, virtually everyone who wants to stream music is likely doing so.

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