It was bound to happen. The artform of Hip-Hop has exploded since its inception in the ghettos and urban confines of New York City back in the early ’80s. It has gone from an esoteric, gritty, underground, primitively-viewed medium to the most popular genre in music. Its purpose, direction and existence has changed from an outlet for the silenced to a mainstream phenomenon.
Most music observers have felt this way for a while now as Hip-Hop has become a colorless canvas open to all races, creeds and denominations. International fertile grounds for expression, connection and growth. Now, the numbers support Hip-Hops moment as king of American music.
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For the first time in U.S. History, Hip-Hop is now the most popular genre in music, surpassing the previous title-holder of Rock & Roll.
TheSource.com reported that according to Nielsen Musics mid-year report, which classifies Hip-Hop and R&B within the same category, both genres currently compose 25.1 percent of all music consumed in the United States.”
Hip-Hop with its massive cultural diversity and racial inclusiveness in the same category as R&B? Thats another story for another day, but getting back to the numbers, “while 25.1 percent seems low, its the highest, topping Rock & Rolls value of 23 percent.”
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The report says that when it comes to physical album sales, Rock is still pulling ahead, accounting for 40 percent.
But in an era where streaming is king, says source.com, Hip-Hop/R&B reel in 29 percent of all on-demand streams, contributing significantly to its ranking, and as physical sales wane and streaming grows, its likely that this trend will last.
The first half of 2017 has seen some incredible new benchmarks for the music industry, said Nielsens SVP of Music Industry Insights, David Bakula, in a statement. The rapid adoption of streaming platforms by consumers has generated engagement with music on a scale that weve never seen before.
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The four-decade-long hypnotism that Hip-hop has inflicted upon generation after generation combined with the easy and instant accessibility to music that millennials currently enjoy has led to this Hip-Hop explosion.The art form has America on lockdown and has long been a respected and celebrated one all across the world, which makes its popularity in a melting pot such as the U.S. quite understandable and impressive.
The greatest genre of music the world has ever seen continues to write new chapters and shape the future.