The 10 most popular music artists of 2018 so far, according to Nielsen

YouTube/DrakeDrake’s ‘God’s Plan’ video.

Drake and Post Malone are in a league of their own in popular music this year, according to Nielsen’s mid-year report on the music industry.

The two rappers, whose versatile music has allowed them to top charts across multiple genres, took the top two spots on Nielsen’s ranking of 2018’s most popular artists by total album-equivalent consumption, a metric which includes all music sales, streaming figures, and digital downloads.

Drake’s Billboard No. 1 single “God’s Plan” led all songs in on-demand streaming and total consumption. Post Malone’s single “Psycho” came in second in both categories.

Malone’s album “Beerbongs & Bentleys,” released in April, beat out the original soundtrack for the film “The Greatest Showman” to lead Nielsen’s list of year’s most popular albums by total album-equivalent consumption.

Here are Nielsen’s 10 most popular artists of 2018 so far, ranked by total album-equivalent consumption:


10. Taylor Swift

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Total album-equivalent consumption:1,068,000Album sales: 285,000Digital songs: 986,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,027,226,000


9. Eminem

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Total album-equivalent consumption:1,081,000Album sales: 302,000Digital songs: 917,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,031,565,000


8. The Weeknd

Rich Fury/Getty

Total album-equivalent consumption:1,104,000Album sales: 178,000Digital songs: 500,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,314,121,000


7. Kendrick Lamar

Mark Metcalfe/Getty

Total album-equivalent consumption:1,264,000Album sales: 228,000Digital songs: 864,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,424,425,000


6. Ed Sheeran

Mike Coppola/Getty

Total album-equivalent consumption:1,267,000Album sales: 338,000Digital songs: 1,926,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,103,995,000


5. J. Cole

Total album-equivalent consumption:1,339,000Album sales: 288,000Digital songs: 303,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,530,496,000


4. XXXTentacion

Total album-equivalent consumption:1,068,000Album sales: 285,000Digital songs: 986,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,027,226,000


3. Migos

Neilson Barnard/Getty

Total album-equivalent consumption: 1,470,000Album sales: 112,000Digital songs: 900,000Streaming on-demand audio: 1,903,032,000


2. Drake

Total album-equivalent consumption:2,474,000Album sales: 71,000Digital songs: 1,999,000Streaming on-demand audio: 3,304,426,000


1. Post Malone

Rich Fury/Getty

Total album-equivalent consumption:2,624,000Album sales: 324,000Digital songs: 2,030,000Streaming on-demand audio: 3,145,868,000

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