Along the way, Rodrigo faced plenty of competition. In the past few months, new popular albums have landed from J. Cole, Lil Baby, Tyler, the Creator, Pop Smoke, The Kid Laroi and Billie Eilish. But to date nothing has enjoyed the staying power of “Sour.”
The biggest surprise is that Rodrigo didn’t cede the top spot in August to Eilish, who over the summer released “Happier Than Ever,” the follow-up to her 2019 smash. “Happier Than Ever” was the best-selling album in the U.S. during August, topping the charts for three weeks in a row.While Eilish’s second album will rank as one of the year’s biggest debuts, “Happier Than Ever” has yet to produce a runaway hit at the scale of “Bad Guy,” the fifth single from “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” That song was Eilish’s first single to top the Billboard charts, and it remains more popular on YouTube than most of her newer songs.
Three months after releasing her album, Rodrigo was still the most popular act in the world on Spotify, the top paid streaming service.
Having Rodrigo and Eilish at No. 1 and No. 2 continues a strong year for Interscope Geffen A&M Records, which released both of the hit albums. The division of Universal Music Group is also home to Lady Gaga and Eminem.
In September, Rodrigo’s four-month reign will face its stiffest challenge yet courtesy of Aubrey Graham, better known as Drake.
Source: Pollstar, Spotify, Nielsen Music/MRC, CrowdTangle and YouTube
Design, development and data by Christopher Cannon, Julian Burgess and Alex McIntyre.
Bloomberg ranked the world’s most influential pop stars based on six criteria:
- Trailing three-month gross revenues from live shows
- Trailing 30-day ticket sales for live shows
- Trailing four-week album sales
- Trailing four-week digital song streams
- Trailing 30-day total interactions on Instagram
- Trailing four-week YouTube views
Data for live shows is provided by Pollstar, which ranks the top 100 artists by average gross revenues received per show and top 75 artists by average number of tickets sold per show. Both datasets are released on a weekly basis, with Bloomberg using the final weekly releases for that calendar month. From this universe of artists for this date, Bloomberg calculates the total gross revenues over the trailing three months and total ticket sales for the previous 30 days.
Album sales data is provided by Nielsen Music/MRC Data. Figures are released weekly for the Billboard top 200 albums based on “total activity,” which is defined as albums, track-equivalent albums and audio on-demand streaming-equivalent albums combined. To construct the universe of eligible artists for that month’s ranking, Bloomberg includes any artist who is in the top 100 for any given week. Bloomberg then sums each artist’s total activity throughout the month. Figures for a given week are included as long as the final day of that week occurs during the calendar month.
Digital-song streaming data is provided by Spotify. Figures are released weekly for the top 200 songs. To construct the universe of eligible artists for that month’s ranking, Bloomberg includes any artist who is in the top 100 for any given week. Bloomberg then sums each artist’s total number of streams throughout the month. Figures for a given week are included as long as the final day of that week occurs during the calendar month.
Instagram data is provided by CrowdTangle. Interactions are measured over the course of the calendar month, from the start of the first day of the month through the end of the last day of the month. The top 100 artists qualify for inclusion in the ranking.
YouTube releases weekly data on its top 100 most-viewed artists and videos. Bloomberg uses artists from the category of “Global – Top Songs” to construct the universe of performers who qualify for the ranking. Bloomberg then sums each artist’s total views throughout the month. Figures for a given week are included as long as the final day of that week occurs during the calendar month.
For any given show, song or album that involves a collaboration of multiple artists, each artist is considered as a separate entity and credited with the total number of gross revenues, ticket sales, song streams, or views associated with the collaborative effort. If an act is an established duo or trio, the act is treated as a single entity. Artists who participate on a soundtrack album (as part of “various artists”) are not included. For March, April and May 2020 rankings, collaborating artists were not included for Spotify and YouTube data. They are included in rankings from June 2020 onward.
Comedians, models and other artists who appear in the top 100 of the six metrics (top 75 for 30-day ticket sales) but do not have musical careers are eliminated from the final universe. Each artist’s ranking within the six variables reflects their position among this final list of qualified artists. An artist with no ranking for one of the six metrics means they did not appear within the top 100 (top 75 for 30-day ticket sales) at any point during the previous month.
With the universe established, each artist is ranked on each metric. Artists are then scored on a scale of 0 to 100 for each metric based on their relative position within the metric’s ranking. The best-performing artist receives a score of 100, the worst-performing artist a score of 0, while all other artists are scored proportionally based on their position between the best- and worst-performing artists. The six metrics are equally weighted and averaged for a final score between 0 and 100.
Note: Beginning with April edition of the ranking, two changes were introduced:
1) Most artists have canceled or rescheduled tours due to the coronavirus, so there is no new data on ticket sales or box office grosses. It’s unclear when that will change. The four remaining metrics are weighted at 25% each in this new version.
2) For data that is released weekly, the ranking now includes any data whose week ends in the given calendar month. Previously, a week’s data was used if it was released in the calendar month.