- New data shows that Lil Nas X was the most popular music artist among baseball fans ages 18-29.
- The hip-hop artist recently came into controversy over Satanic themes for a shoe endorsement.
- Additional data shows that the controversy might not affect his popularity among those fans.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Lil Nas X is the most popular music artist among baseball fans ages 18-29, according to data obtained by Insider from consumer insight service Helixa.
Since the data was collected, the Hip-Hop artist became a controversy over a shoe endorsement that featured Satanic themes. Still, additional data shows that his popularity among that group could be only slightly affected.
Helixa is an audience intelligence platform that gathers information through public social data rather than surveys or polls. The service features cutting-edge artificial intelligence engines to format that data as official insights.
The data focused on one age group that makes up the vast majority of MLB’s target audience: males age 18-29.
That demographic showed a higher affinity for Hip-Hop than any other musical genre among all 3o MLB fan bases, with 71.3% claiming it to be their favorite genre. Subsequently, Lil Nas X was unanimously the most favored artist among all 30 fan bases by reach, meaning the data also included favorability among fans outside the target demographic, with 35.88%.
Not only was Lil Nas X at the top of each fan base’s favored artist, but he was the only artist that was consistently ranked in the top three of every fan base.
Lil Nas X, whose real name is Montero Lamar Hill, then released his latest single “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)” on March 26, which garnered backlash over imagery of Hill pole dancing into hell and grinding on Satan.
That same day, he announced a new shoe line called “Satan Shoes.” The Nike sneakers each contained a drop of human blood, and only 666 pairs were produced.
-SAINT (@saint) March 26, 2021
The controversy elicited a response from South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem and other right-wing figures, including Candace Owens, Kaitlin Bennett, and several commentators on Fox News. Nike, who was not behind the alteration of the shoes, sued to have sales stopped.
Additional data by one of Helixa’s partners suggests that Hill could maintain popularity among baseball fans even during the controversy.
MRI-Simmons, one of Helixa’s partnered research firms, was able to track how individual demographics agree with certain statements. Helixa’s senior research analyst Alex Lawson told Insider that MRI-Simmons found that the importance of religious values among baseball fans might not be as prevalent as some might think.
“MRI-Simmons had a statement when they were doing their survey-based data that ‘religion should be a pillar of our society,’ and when I looked back at baseball fans overall who were also fans of Lil Nas X, only 18% agreed completely with that statement,” Lawson said. “But I also decided to take out the Lil Nas X and just look at baseball fans in general, and we only saw that they agreed with religion being a pillar of society going up to 20%.”
That 18% could have very well been alienated by Hill’s recent controversy and could cause him to fall out of favor with the Detroit Tigers’ fan base, which showed the lowest favorability for Lil Nas X at just 26.41%. Still, the Hip-Hop artist’s overwhelming favorability overall could remain strong in the aftermath of the controversy if the data holds up.
Helixa will release updated figures toward the end of April.
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