Scribbled in history books for some good and not-so-good reasons, 2016 brought with it some of modern music’s most memorable moments.
Now, as the year draws to a close, TGJ is reflecting on 31 moments that rocked – and to some degree shaped – the Urban and Pop musical landscape as we know it.
Next, we reflect on how streaming literally put Kanye West and Rihanna in history books for unprecedented feats:
Rihanna’s 8th album, ‘Anti,’ had one of the most controversial roll-outs in music history. After debuting at #27 with 460 units sold, the ‘Work’ wailer worked her way into history books by watching the project be the fastest to platinum in music history after it hit the “1 million mark” in less than 24 hours thanks to free downloads and streams.
Eventually soaring to the top of the Billboard 200 for a number of weeks over the course of the year thanks to strong streaming figures, the Grammy winner also landed in history books once the album – with just 17,000 sold – maintained its dominance over the chart. It became (and remains) the lowest one week sales of any #1 album (read more on that here).
That history making run only reheated a streaming debate brought to a boil thanks to Kanye West’s ‘Life of Pablo’ (which had a fairy controversial roll-out itself).
The Life of Pablo was the first No. 1 in the history of the Billboard 200 where more than half of its first week units were generated by streaming equivalent albums…
The previous high-water mark for streams at No. 1 was notched just three weeks ago, on the April 2-dated chart, when Rihanna’s Anti returned to No. 1, with 69% percent of its total units (54,000) derived from streams. It only sold
‘Pablo,’ initially only available for purchase via West’s official site, only sold 20,000 physical copies in its opening week (90,000 SPS). However, even with that 20,000 subtracted, he still would’ve been #1 and, thusly, became the first album to ever top the charts based on streaming alone.