New York Rappers Take Top Two Spots on Pandora Trendsetters Charts
New York may be the birthplace of rap, but no one can deny that in recent years, it hasn’t exactly been the center of it. Rather, mainstream hip-hop attention has shifted to other cities like Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles and — perhaps most prominently — Atlanta.
But from the looks of it, New York is having a moment again.
At #1 this week is Brooklyn’s Young M.A., who’s already gotten co-signs from Beyonce and Nicki Minaj after her hit “OOOUUU” made its mark on airwaves this summer. Compared to last week, she saw a 24% increase in Track Station Adds and a 15.4% increase in Artist Station Adds this week, while “OOOUUU” saw a 206.7% week-on-week increase in Spins. But we’ve already talked about her.
Now it’s time to strap sparklers onto our champagne bottles and turn our attention to A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, the Bronx-born rapper who entered the chart last week at #20 and staged a massive jump this week to #2.
This month compared to last, the 20-year-old whose real name is Artist Dubose has seen a 324.69% increase in Pandora Spins, a 389.29% jump in Thumbs Up and a 567.05% uptick in Track Station Adds.
So why the sudden uptick? His debut mixtape, April’s Artist the MixTape, spawned hits like “My Sh**” and “Jungle” that continue to gain steam. (“Jungle” saw a week-on-week 73.9% increase in Pandora Spins, while “Friend Zone” saw a 41.1% jump.) Add in the fact that he got a shoutout from Drake on his Summer Sixteen Tour and a glowing profile on the front page of the New York Times’ Arts section, and it all starts to make sense.
In said New York Times article, famed New York DJ Funkmaster Flex said he think that it might be time that people are yearning for “that New York sound” again.“I don’t want to rush anything and say we’re back,” he told The Times. “I don’t want to jinx it.”
And indeed, it may be too early to tell whether this is a moment for New York rap, or just a moment for two rappers who are from New York. Sixteen of the 20 artists on this week’s Trendsetters Chart are rappers, and they come from all over North America, from Canada and Pacific Northwest to SoCal and the South.
Atlanta leads the pack, with three rappers on the chart: Russ at #3, Dae Dae at #6, and “Uber Everywhere” MC Madeintyo at #9. Representing Chicago are Famous Dex (#5) and G Herbo (#13), while Miami rappers Denzel Curry and Stitches follow at #14 and #17, respectively.
There’s also D.R.A.M., the Virginia rapper who’s spending his 12th week on the chart after the viral success of “Broccoli” with Lil Yachty. Elsewhere in the South, Memphis’ Blac Youngsta climbs four spots to #11 and Chattanooga’s Isiah Rashad makes his debut at #18.
Portland’s Aminé is enjoying his second week on the chart, at #16 this week, Canadian rapper Roy Wood and San Diego’s Rob $tone.
In the age of the Internet, when rappers can borrow styles from all over, it looks like rap may have no “center” at all.