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22nd Mar 2023

Guinness World Records reveal “the most popular musician on the planet”

Rory Cashin

The artist now also holds the title for the most-streamed song in Spotify history.

Popularity doesn’t always equate to quality, as the listening numbers on the Baby Shark song can attest to. However, that isn’t the case for The Weeknd, the multiple-award-winning and critically adored artist, who the Guinness World Records has just revealed to be the most popular musician on the planet.

The publication announced that The Weekend recently became the first artist to reach 100 million monthly listens on Spotify, but this week announced a new record, with that monthly listens now (at the time of writing) reaching 111.9 million. Part of the big push lately was a remix of ‘Die For You’, which was originally released on his 2016 album Starboy. However, after becoming massively popular on TikTok, The Weeknd reached out to his regular collaborator Ariana Grande for a remix, which resulted in a seventh number one single for each of them.

At the time of writing, the ‘Die For You’ remix has over 166 million listens, despite only being released at the end of February. Between Starboy, After Hours and Beauty Behind The Madness, The Weeknd is now the second solo male artist in history to have multiple number one singles from three albums, tied with Michael Jackson.

The Guinness World Records goes on to state that the current league of most popular artist in the world “isn’t even close”, as second place behind The Weekend, by nearly 30 million monthly listens, is Miley Cyrus with 82.4 million.

After that, we’ve got Shakira (81.6 million), Ariana Grande (80.6 million), Taylor Swift (80.2 million), Rihanna (78.5 million), and then the closest male musician on the list, Ed Sheeran (77.5 million).

The Weeknd also holds the title for the single most-streamed song on Spotify, with ‘Blinding Lights’ racking up over 3.4 billion plays as of February this year, which is when it knocked the previous title holder – Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape Of You’ – off the top spot, in a position it held since September 2017.

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