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Kendrick Lamar

Source: Chris Weeks / Getty

It’s no secret that the way in which the world consumes music has changed. In lieu of the traditional methods of purchasing physical and/or digital copies, the notion of streaming music over platforms such as Spotify and YouTube has taken over, and no where has this change been more felt than in the genre of hip-hop.

In a new feature by BuzzFeed News, the publication spoke with a variety of industry experts to break down the numbers behind hip-hop’s success in the world of music streaming.

BuzzFeed News cites Nielsen Music as saying that 29% of all on-demand streaming in 2014 was hip-hop and R&B. The genre came ahead of rock (25%), pop (21%), EDM (7%) and country (6%). And, according to BuzzFeed News, this trend is likely to continue with hip-hop claiming a 25% share of streaming in the first quarter of 2015, ahead of rock at 23% and pop at 20%.

Over the past six months, four of the top five most streamed albums globally on Spotify belonged to the genre of hip-hop, including Drake’s If Youre Reading This Its Too Late, Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly, J. Cole’s 2014 Forest Hills Drive and Big Sean’s Dark Sky Paradise. In addition to this monumental feat, Wiz Khalifa set the Spotify record for the most streamed song in a single week. “See You Again” featuring Charlie Puth off the Furious 7 soundtrack, received 21.9 million plays from April 6–12, 2015.

“These artists are doing phenomenally well,” Dave Bakula, SVP of industry insights at Nielsen, told BuzzFeed News. “And it’s something we’ve seen for as long as we’ve been tracking [streaming] — R&B/hip-hop really sets itself apart.”

“Originally conceived as the defiant music of outsiders, hip-hop, now more than ever, is poised to become the default,” the BuzzFeed News article concludes. “If streaming is the future, than, for now at least, the Drakes and the Kendricks, and the J. Coles of the world are its heirs.”

This follows news that hip-hop and rap music has been scientifically proven to be “the single most important event that has shaped the musical structure of the American charts” between 1960 and 2010, according to a team of researchers from two London universities.

To read the full story, please visit BuzzFeed News.

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