Usher gets 550% Spotify streaming boost after Super Bowl

Entertainment

Usher received a significant streaming boost immediately following his Super Bowl performance, as is typical for halftime headliners, according to Spotify, with four of the songs he performed surging more than 1,000% in streams on Sunday night.
Usher brought out guests including Alicia Keys for his Super Bowl halftime performance. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images) GETTY IMAGES
Key facts
  • Usher’s overall Spotify streams increased 550% in the United States following his Super Bowl performance, Spotify revealed in an Instagram post.
  • Between 6 p.m. and 12 a.m. PT on Sunday evening, “Caught Up,” Usher’s 2005 hit and the first song on his halftime performance setlist, surged 2,000%, marking Usher’s largest percent gain.
  • Three of his other songs—“U Don’t Have To Call,” “Love In This Club” (feat. Young Jeezy) and “Bad Girl”—received gains of more than 1,000% in Spotify streams over those six hours.
  • The songs Usher brought out surprise guests for—”My Boo” featuring Alicia Keys and “Yeah!” featuring Lil Jon and Ludacris—also notched streaming gains of 690% and 520%, respectively.
Key background

Though artists – including Usher – don’t get paid for headlining the Super Bowl halftime show, they typically receive huge boosts in streams and sales after performing for an audience of more than 100 million.

Between the day before and the day after Rihanna’s halftime show last year, her streams rose 211%, with songs “Where Have You Been” and “Pour It Up” surging more than 450% in streams.

Jennifer Lopez and Shakira saw streaming gains of 267% and 187%, respectively, in the week following their 2020 performance.

Songs may also shoot back up the charts following a Super Bowl performance, like Lady Gaga’s “Million Reasons,” which vaulted to No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 after her 2017 show.

News peg

Usher took to the Super Bowl halftime stage just two days after dropping his new album, “Coming Home,” but his setlist largely paid tribute to his decades-old hits.

He brought out special guests including Alicia Keys, Lil Jon, Ludacris, will.i.am and H.E.R. to perform songs like “U Got It Bad,” “Burn,” “My Boo,” “OMG” and “Yeah!”

Contra

Though Usher headlined the biggest stage this weekend, he’s facing competition on the charts. Beyoncé teased new music during a Verizon commercial that aired during the Super Bowl, and dropped two songs during the game’s second half.

“16 Carriages” and “Texas Hold ‘Em,” two country songs from her forthcoming album, billed as the second act to her 2022 album “Renaissance,” currently reign atop U.S. iTunes.

Kanye West and Ty Dolla $ign also dropped their collaborative album “Vultures 1” on Friday, which has largely dominated the Apple Music and Spotify charts since its release.

What to watch for

How big Usher’s overall sales and streaming boosts will be—and where he’ll land on the Billboard charts next week.

This article was first published on forbes.com and all figures are in USD.

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