Year on TikTok: Music 2020 – Down The Rabbit Hole: Unexpected Hits and Niche Discoveries

Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok’s ‘Music 2020’ report details the short-video platform’s biggest, trending and emerging songs, artists and genres.

The already sawing social media platform only grew faster as stay-at-home orders came into effect in March last year.

Music is such an important aspect of the short-video sharing app. In 2020, “over 176 different songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds.” In December, TikTok published their Top 100. With it, they announced the platform’s top 10 most significant songs in 2020. Together, these ten songs reached over 50 billion across the 125 million videos they were featured in, five of which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Nearly 90 songs that trended on TikTok last year featured on the Top 100 charts in the US, fifteen of these reached number one. TikTok has helped drive so many indie artists into the mainstream. In 2020, over 70 artists that have broken on the platform have received major label deals including Claire Rosinkranz, Dixie D’Amelio, Powfu, Priscilla Block and Tai Verdes, with dozens more charting on Rolling Stone’s Breakthrough 25.

Music shaped the year on TikTok and TikTok shaped the year in music. Unlike radio stations or streaming platform’s playlists, trending music on TikTok is not dictated by the platform but rather the community itself. To celebrate these big moments, TikTok recently published their first-ever U.S. music report, with music that mattered on TikTok last year as well as the communities favourite genres, biggest stars, emerging artists, classics songs that found new audiences and meme-worthy songs.

We at TikTok share our community’s passion for music and we’re dedicated to providing a platform where artists and fans can interact and thrive. It has been inspiring to watch our community bring new talent to the forefront, help send songs up the charts, and use music to create an oasis of joy during a trying time. We will continue to work hard to make TikTok a platform that supports artists and encourages musical engagement and discovery.

Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok

Find your personalised Year on TikTok here.


Down The Rabbit Hole: Unexpected Hits and Niche Discoveries
Down The Rabbit Hole
Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok have managed to create the sense of a close-knit community within the most popular social media platform in the world. TikTok’s internet culture, memes, trends and songs morph from in-jokes on the platform to real-world phenomenons.

“Vibe” – Cookiee Kawaii

Everywhere At The End Of Time – The Caretaker

“M To The B” – Millie B

“I Love Poland” – Häzel

“Судно (Борис Рижий)” – Molchat Doma

“Mi Pan” – itzmilpops

“A Moment Apart” (ODESZA Cover) – Hannah Harpist

“Spongebob” – Dante9k

Year on TikTok: Music 2020 – The Come Up: Emerging Artists

Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok’s ‘Music 2020’ report details the short-video platform’s biggest, trending and emerging songs, artists and genres.

The already sawing social media platform only grew faster as stay-at-home orders came into effect in March last year.

Music is such an important aspect of the short-video sharing app. In 2020, “over 176 different songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds.” In December, TikTok published their Top 100. With it, they announced the platform’s top 10 most significant songs in 2020. Together, these ten songs reached over 50 billion across the 125 million videos they were featured in, five of which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Nearly 90 songs that trended on TikTok last year featured on the Top 100 charts in the US, fifteen of these reached number one. TikTok has helped drive so many indie artists into the mainstream. In 2020, over 70 artists that have broken on the platform have received major label deals including Claire Rosinkranz, Dixie D’Amelio, Powfu, Priscilla Block and Tai Verdes, with dozens more charting on Rolling Stone’s Breakthrough 25.

Music shaped the year on TikTok and TikTok shaped the year in music. Unlike radio stations or streaming platform’s playlists, trending music on TikTok is not dictated by the platform but rather the community itself. To celebrate these big moments, TikTok recently published their first-ever U.S. music report, with music that mattered on TikTok last year as well as the communities favourite genres, biggest stars, emerging artists, classics songs that found new audiences and meme-worthy songs.

We at TikTok share our community’s passion for music and we’re dedicated to providing a platform where artists and fans can interact and thrive. It has been inspiring to watch our community bring new talent to the forefront, help send songs up the charts, and use music to create an oasis of joy during a trying time. We will continue to work hard to make TikTok a platform that supports artists and encourages musical engagement and discovery.

Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok

Find your personalised Year on TikTok here.


The Come Up: Emerging Artists
The Come Up
Image Credit: TikTok

Music discovery is a really important part of TikTok, with the platform being responsible for kickstarting the careers of many otherwise unknown artists by helping them translate TikTok trends into streaming revenue growth. The artists below started on TikTok and through posting engaging content with a growing community, have become major artists outside of the platform. Here just a handful of examples from TikTok.

24kGoldn

After making his name on TikTok with hits like “Valentino” and “City Of Angels” in 2019, 24kGoldn leapt to the stratosphere in 2020 with “Mood,” his collaboration with iann dior that reached #1 on Billboard and generated 2.5 million video creations.


Flo Milli

With her infectious attitude and ready-made catchphrases, Flo Milli used TikTok to take her music to another level. The 20-year-old Alabama native’s “May I,” a hand-clapping, Snoop Dogg-referencing banger that inspired 1.3 million creations, helped propel her debut album Ho, Why Is You Here onto the Billboard 200.


Sech

The Panama native Latin superstar is a very active TikTok user, and his frequent reaction duets, behind-the-scenes clips, and charming dance moves earned him 1.7 million followers and a massive hit in “Relación” (4.2 million video creations).


ppcocaine

19-year-old rapper ppcocaine’s uncompromising authenticity and LGBT perspective helped her earn 3.5 million followers, several viral hits (including “PJ“), and a record deal with Columbia.


The Kid Laroi

The 17-year-old rap star made a major impact when he released his song “Addison Rae,” drawing the attention of a popular creator and and helping to bring TikTok culture to the mainstream.


Avenue Beat

This rising pop trio sang what we were all thinking in their era-defining anthem “F2020,” which they first revealed on TikTok in a video that racked up over 16.7 million views.


Curtis Waters

Curtis Waters’s active promotion of his song “Stunnin” ft. Herm Franklin (1.3 million video creations) on TikTok helped make the breezily confident pop-rap jam one of the songs of the summer.


347aidan

The bedroom pop riser built a large audience (477k followers) by engaging with his fans and debuting snippets of new music, including his viral single “Dancing In My Room” (1.5 million creations)


Fousheé

After her ghostly tenor graced the hook for Sleepy Hallow’s TikTok-propelled Billboard Hot 100 hit “Deep End Freestyle” (530k creations), Fousheé took to TikTok to introduce the smoky, soulful full version of “Deep End,” which made an even bigger impact (3.7 million creations) and trended for multiple weeks. 


Tate McRae

17-year-old singer-songwriter Tate McRae worked hard to build an audience on TikTok in 2020, and she was rewarded with nearly 2 million followers, over 49 million hashtag views, and viral hits including “You Broke Me First” and “Stupid.”


Tai Verdes

The former Verizon store salesman struck gold with his breezy hit “Stuck In The Middle” (2.3 million creations), a constant presence on TikTok’s Trending Songs charts.


ZaeHD & CEO

These Little Rock, AR dance-rap mavens are active TikTok users and viral song machines, creating trends with bangers like “SIX FO’” (1.5 million creations), “Hustle & Flow” (1.8 million creations), “Roscoes” (1.1 million creations), and more.


Blu DeTiger

A rising pop star whose hit “Figure It Out” has over 480k video creations and 20 million Spotify streams, Blu DeTiger moonlights as TikTok’s favorite bassist, shredding to songs of all genres.


Corpse

The internet-savvy rapper captivated audiences with his deep croak of a voice and visceral lyrics, as TikTok (including @emmalangevin) helped propel “E-GIRLS ARE RUINING MY LIFE” ft. Savage Ga$p to multiple weeks in the top ten of Spotify’s Viral 50 chart.


Natalie Taylor

Written in 2015, Taylor’s emotional ballad “Surrender” became one of TikTok’s most popular songs of 2020 (over 5 million video creations), offering a poignant soundtrack to emotional stories.

Virtual reality music startup MelodyVR officially completes multi-million-dollar purchase of Napster

Image Credit: Graydon Driver

MelodyVR have finalised the purchase of streaming service Napster, buying the company for a casual $70m.

The music tech startup first announced the surprise acquisition of Napster in August 2020, dependent on securing the funds required. Despite MelodyVR reporting disappointing earnings for the first half of 2020, the purchase has gone ahead. Napster will retain its infamous name, surviving as a subsidiary of MelodyVR. Its previous parent company, RealNetworks, will now focus on their remaining learning-based and casual games businesses, whilst remaining as a shareholder in the newly merged company.

What will the joining of the two companies look like in practice? MelodyVR have said the move ‘represents the pioneers of music streaming and live music VR coming together under one roof’. It may be a streaming service nowadays, but Napster was one of the original disruptors of the industry with its origins in file-sharing piracy. It currently has 5 million subscribers and made $113m in revenue last year. London-based MelodyVR meanwhile offers free and purchasable experiences such as 360° interactive video of performances and studio sessions, viewable on the app with or without a VR headset. They hope to replicate the immersive experience of a live event.

Anthony Matchett, CEO and Founder of MelodyVR, said:

Over the coming year, we intend to leverage the existing Napster userbase, partners and underlying technologies developed by the Company as part of the foundation to build a next-generation music platform. At present, music content consumption is extremely fragmented for fans, with audio, video and live-events spanning multiple-platforms with a consequent need for multiple subscriptions.

Anthony Matchett, CEO and Founder of MelodyVR

Forward-looking and innovative, MelodyVR’s original investors reportedly included superstar Adele. With regards to plans for the first few months of 2021, CEO Matchett said MelodyVR hoped to ‘build a cross-platform, hybrid music service, delivering audio recordings and video content as well as renowned live-events, all via a single platform.’

Over the past year, MelodyVR has launched COVID-save initiatives to help music artists continue to perform. They partnered with Live Nation for Brixton Academy virtual shows from musicians like Fontaines D.C. and Blossoms, hosted the virtual festival Wireless Connect, and organised ticketed livestreams such as Liam Gallagher’s River Thames performance.

Although vaccines offer a chink of light, live gigs are still a faraway prospect and interest in finding innovative ways to bring music to the masses has never been so high. Other companies have made moves to jump on the livestream and virtual event bandwagon in recent years, with Apple requiring NextVR in May 2020. Outside of the pandemic virtual reality offers a chance for music fans to attend a sold-out show, or one they couldn’t get to at the time. Whether or not VR is a passable substitute for the sweat and chaos of a real gig is another matter. MelodyVR are no doubt hoping the purchase of Napster will boost revenue and push the company to the next stage of their plans; taking an expensive gamble and hoping the world catches on.

Year on TikTok: Music 2020 – They’ve Got The Hits: Top Artist Catalog

Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok’s ‘Music 2020’ report details the short-video platform’s biggest, trending and emerging songs, artists and genres.

The already sawing social media platform only grew faster as stay-at-home orders came into effect in March last year.

Music is such an important aspect of the short-video sharing app. In 2020, “over 176 different songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds.” In December, TikTok published their Top 100. With it, they announced the platform’s top 10 most significant songs in 2020. Together, these ten songs reached over 50 billion across the 125 million videos they were featured in, five of which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Nearly 90 songs that trended on TikTok last year featured on the Top 100 charts in the US, fifteen of these reached number one. TikTok has helped drive so many indie artists into the mainstream. In 2020, over 70 artists that have broken on the platform have received major label deals including Claire Rosinkranz, Dixie D’Amelio, Powfu, Priscilla Block and Tai Verdes, with dozens more charting on Rolling Stone’s Breakthrough 25.

Music shaped the year on TikTok and TikTok shaped the year in music. Unlike radio stations or streaming platform’s playlists, trending music on TikTok is not dictated by the platform but rather the community itself. To celebrate these big moments, TikTok recently published their first-ever U.S. music report, with music that mattered on TikTok last year as well as the communities favourite genres, biggest stars, emerging artists, classics songs that found new audiences and meme-worthy songs.

We at TikTok share our community’s passion for music and we’re dedicated to providing a platform where artists and fans can interact and thrive. It has been inspiring to watch our community bring new talent to the forefront, help send songs up the charts, and use music to create an oasis of joy during a trying time. We will continue to work hard to make TikTok a platform that supports artists and encourages musical engagement and discovery.

Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok

Find your personalised Year on TikTok here.


They’ve Got The Hits: Top Artist Catalog
They've Got The Hits
Image Credit: TikTok

2020 saw TikTok audiences turn towards songs that were confident, empowering, sonically unique and danceable. The most-viewed artists listed below aren’t the one hit wonders you can forget the name of going forward. These artists are hit making machines that are here to stay. Megan Thee Stallion is of course a prime example, with two of the year’s biggest hits coming from her: Savage and WAP. Almost all of Doja Cat’s latest album Hot Pink at some point trended last year, with millions dancing to many of her hits. Many honoured the memory of the late rapper Pop Smoke, with four tracks from his album Shoot For The Stars, Aim For The Moon becoming trending hits. Other rappers to make an impact last year on TikTok include Roddy Ricch, DaBaby, and Lil Uzi Vert. Dua Lipa’s disco inspired Future Nostalgia album also brought in significant attention.










Year on TikTok: Music 2020 – Pick Your Sound: Top Genres

Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok’s ‘Music 2020’ report details the short-video platform’s biggest, trending and emerging songs, artists and genres.

The already sawing social media platform only grew faster as stay-at-home orders came into effect in March last year.

Music is such an important aspect of the short-video sharing app. In 2020, “over 176 different songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds.” In December, TikTok published their Top 100. With it, they announced the platform’s top 10 most significant songs in 2020. Together, these ten songs reached over 50 billion across the 125 million videos they were featured in, five of which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Nearly 90 songs that trended on TikTok last year featured on the Top 100 charts in the US, fifteen of these reached number one. TikTok has helped drive so many indie artists into the mainstream. In 2020, over 70 artists that have broken on the platform have received major label deals including Claire Rosinkranz, Dixie D’Amelio, Powfu, Priscilla Block and Tai Verdes, with dozens more charting on Rolling Stone’s Breakthrough 25.

Music shaped the year on TikTok and TikTok shaped the year in music. Unlike radio stations or streaming platform’s playlists, trending music on TikTok is not dictated by the platform but rather the community itself. To celebrate these big moments, TikTok recently published their first-ever U.S. music report, with music that mattered on TikTok last year as well as the communities favourite genres, biggest stars, emerging artists, classics songs that found new audiences and meme-worthy songs.

We at TikTok share our community’s passion for music and we’re dedicated to providing a platform where artists and fans can interact and thrive. It has been inspiring to watch our community bring new talent to the forefront, help send songs up the charts, and use music to create an oasis of joy during a trying time. We will continue to work hard to make TikTok a platform that supports artists and encourages musical engagement and discovery.

Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok

Find your personalised Year on TikTok here.


Pick Your Sound: Top Genres
Pick Your Sound
Image Credit: TikTok

Want to know how to really target your music to the masses on TikTok? TikTok shows us the most popular genres on the platform in the last year by number of video creations. Hip-Hop was of course responsible for the majority of videos on the platform, with songs from the likes of established artists such as Megan Thee Stallion and DaBaby, as well as up-and-comers like Kenndogg and Popp Hunna to name but a few. Pop comes in second place with songs from BTS, Justin Bieber and Dua Lipa. Other proinent genres on the platform include R&B with songs from The Weeknd, Jhené Aiko, Vedo and Tai Verdes, Electronic with artists including Dillon Francis, Alan Walker, and Diplo, Indie/Alternative with music from Wallows, MGMT and Molchat Doma, Latin saw growth last year from artists such as Ozuna, Los Tucanes De Tijuana, and finally Country had a solid community on TikTok with tracks from the likes of Luke Combs, Morgan Wallen, Kelsea Ballerini and Breland

Pick Your Sound 2
Image Credit: TikTok

Year on TikTok: Music 2020 – Real Quick: The Fastest Songs To A Billion

Image Credit: TikTok

TikTok’s ‘Music 2020’ report details the short-video platform’s biggest, trending and emerging songs, artists and genres.

The already sawing social media platform only grew faster as stay-at-home orders came into effect in March last year.

Music is such an important aspect of the short-video sharing app. In 2020, “over 176 different songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds.” In December, TikTok published their Top 100. With it, they announced the platform’s top 10 most significant songs in 2020. Together, these ten songs reached over 50 billion across the 125 million videos they were featured in, five of which reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Nearly 90 songs that trended on TikTok last year featured on the Top 100 charts in the US, fifteen of these reached number one. TikTok has helped drive so many indie artists into the mainstream. In 2020, over 70 artists that have broken on the platform have received major label deals including Claire Rosinkranz, Dixie D’Amelio, Powfu, Priscilla Block and Tai Verdes, with dozens more charting on Rolling Stone’s Breakthrough 25.

Music shaped the year on TikTok and TikTok shaped the year in music. Unlike radio stations or streaming platform’s playlists, trending music on TikTok is not dictated by the platform but rather the community itself. To celebrate these big moments, TikTok recently published their first-ever U.S. music report, with music that mattered on TikTok last year as well as the communities favourite genres, biggest stars, emerging artists, classics songs that found new audiences and meme-worthy songs.

We at TikTok share our community’s passion for music and we’re dedicated to providing a platform where artists and fans can interact and thrive. It has been inspiring to watch our community bring new talent to the forefront, help send songs up the charts, and use music to create an oasis of joy during a trying time. We will continue to work hard to make TikTok a platform that supports artists and encourages musical engagement and discovery.

Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok

Find your personalised Year on TikTok here.


Real Quick: The Fastest Songs To A Billion
Real Quick

All the songs to hit one billion views last year found different ways to the milestone. The top hit Toosie Slide reached a billion views in just three days, followed by WAP which took two weeks. Many of the fastest rising songs were from long established major artists, while others were from unexpected artists such as Sada Baby, BeatKing, Popp Hunna and WhoHeem who before their breakout viral moment earlier last year, were largely unknown by the masses.

1. “Toosie Slide” – Drake
2. “WAP” (feat. Megan Thee Stallion) – Cardi B
3. “Therefore I Am” – Billie Eilish
4. “Lets Link” – WhoHeem
5. “Say I Yi Yi” – Ying Yang Twins
6. “Where Is The Love?” – The Black Eyed Peas
7. “Whole Lotta Choppas” – Sada Baby
8. “Adderall (Corvette Corvette)” – Popp Hunna
9. “Mood Swings” – Pop Smoke
10. “THICK” – DJ Chose & Beatking

Discover your Year on TikTok 2020

The short-video app’s first ‘Year on TikTok’ recaps your personalised highlights of 2020, detailing your top videos, trends, creators and effects.

Unlike YouTube’s approach of searching for videos and subscribing to creators, TikTok’s unique algorithm customizes the entire For You feed to your tastes. This keeps users engaged and away from competitors such as Instagram Reels or Triller. Year on TikTok is available to all users around the world, showing the videos that struck a chord with you in 2020.

To access your personal Year on TikTok, ensure you have the latest version of TikTok, open the app, scroll/swipe past any ads, then on the For You feed, tap the year on TikTok circle in the upper left. Scroll down to see TikTok’s staff pick of their favourite videos, or Get started to see your personalized Year on TikTok. Here you’ll see your stats and fun facts such as, if you joined TikTok in 2020, it’ll show the date you signed up. Find how many videos you commented on, how many videos you shared, which effect was your favourite based on how many videos you liked that used it, your favourite song based on how many videos you watched that featured it, how many different genres you enjoyed and your top “vibes” based on the kinds of content you liked and engaged with the most.

Once you’ve found your Year on TikTok, you’ll be given the option to share it with the world. This will unlock a “2021” badge that you can add to your profile photo.

Find the top 10 viral videos of 2020 on TikTok.

YouTube drop their requirements for Channel Memberships

Image Credit: YouTube

Creators on YouTube will be thrilled to hear that is now far easier to take part in exclusive subscription offers for fans with reduced requirements to be eligible.

YouTube have lowered the number of subscribers a channel needs to be able to offer Channel Memberships. Channels will now need only 1,000 subscribers to make us of the feature, whereas before they required channels to have 5,000 subscribers before being able to offer it to their fans.

YouTube’s Channel Memberships were announced in 2018 and offer an extra layer of commitment from fans and subscribers. The offering lets fans pay a subscription fee for access to unique bonuses like exclusive livestreams and content, shout outs from channel creators, and bonuses in chats like badges and emojis.

For those willing to pay the monthly $4.99 fee, it offers a route for them to truly support the channels they love. In an age of minuscule advertising revenue that is easily diminished even further by ad-blockers and tight restrictions on the type of content advertisers will associate with, the offering provides a boon to creators who make a living from their YouTube content.

The lowering of YouTube’s restrictions offers huge potential to smaller creators who may have a dedicated following but one that isn’t big enough to earn from views alone. YouTube have been singing the praises of the feature’s success, writing: “In 2020, YouTube creators earned over 4x as much revenue from channel memberships compared to 2019.”

Find out more about launching your own Channel Memberships here.

Animated album art comes to Apple Music

Image Credit: Brett Jordan

Apple Music are pulling a Spotify and rolling out animated album art.

A cool new feature debuted in the last Apple update. Animated playlist covers were already available with the release of iOS 14, but the newest development gives Spotify the side-eye by adding animation above albums in Apple Music.

Paul McCartney’s solo album, McCartney III, was one of the first albums to have the new feature, which rolled out with iOS 14.3 and macOS 11.1 updates.

https://twitter.com/ShaunWestonWork/status/1339866287158276096

The animated element adds a fun extra dimension of creativity, and could also mean that Apple Music are looking towards more video content, like Spotify. Both companies are chasing YouTube, with its monopoly on music videos.

What’s next? It remains to be seen if Apple will go full Spotify and extend the animation option to users with their own version of Spotify Canvas. The streaming app’s feature allows users to promote their music through short video loops.

Apple Music’s animated album covers seem to only be for selected artists at the moment, but as RouteNote users were keen to take advantage of the Canvas feature, we’ll be on the look out for any updates if Apple extends the feature to more artists.

Spotify seem to confirm reports of music videos, documentaries and exclusive video series coming to the streaming service

According to a Spotify support article, they will soon be adding music videos, documentaries and exclusive video series to the desktop, mobile and tablet apps.

In June we reported that Spotify may be adding music videos, thanks to source code found by Jane Wong showing a video player. According to the details, Spotify’s now playing screen would show options to display regular album art, Spotify Canvas or Video.

While there’s still no official announcement, this feature may be coming sooner than expected. This time, details come straight from the horse’s mouth, more specifically a public Spotify support page that states “Watch music videos, documentaries, and exclusive video series, all from within the Spotify app.” The page shows how to find videos, other video options, and that this feature will be available on desktop, iOS and Android, with the latter two seemingly only supporting Premium users.

Spotify music videos

This page has been floating around the internet for around a week now, so it’s clear Spotify aren’t interested in covering up their “mistake(?)”.

Spotify have undoubtedly seen YouTube Music’s (backed by their gargantuan library of music videos on YouTube) big uptick in subscribers since Google Play Music’s announcement of their closure by the end of the year. YouTube Music aren’t the only platform making use of music videos, with fresh competition from the likes of FaceBook, Apple Music and Amazon Music Unlimited.

This won’t be Spotify’s first voyage into video, with video podcasts coming to their service back in July.