TikTok dominated and defined the year in popular music, crowning new hits and rediscovering some old ones. Now the platform is leaning into that with its first music report, one of the deepest looks yet into its musical impact. A lot of it isn’t that surprising, starting with the most successful TikTok song of the year: none other than Drake’s “Toosie Slide,” a track created for the express purpose of being a TikTok hit. It was also the fastest song to reach 1 billion video views on the platform, according to the report. Drake’s song made the climb in just three days — far ahead of the second-place song, Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s “WAP,” which took two weeks. Count that as a win for shamelessness.
But “WAP” did carry Megan Thee Stallion to the status of TikTok’s most-viewed artist of the year, along with her other hits like “Savage,” the “Savage Remix” with Beyoncé, and “Don’t Stop” with Young Thug. Doja Cat came in second, while Pop Smoke, DaBaby, and Roddy Ricch rounded out the top five. This reflected another TikTok trend: Hip-hop was not just the top genre but represented more than half of all video creations. In total, 176 songs racked up over a billion views in 2020, according to the platform — and not just new ones, either. The Ying Yang Twins’ 2002 song “Say I Yi Yi” and the Black Eyed Peas’ 2003 song “Where Is the Love?” had the fourth- and fifth-fastest rises of the year, while the report also reminds us how TikTok catapulted Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 song “Dreams” back onto the charts, thanks to Nathan Apodaca’s inescapable video. And speaking of charts, TikTok claims that 90 trending songs charted in the U.S., and 15 topped a chart (but not necessarily the Hot 100). Also according to the report, TikTok accounted for over 70 new major-label signings — but take that number with a grain of salt, as it includes such success stories as Dixie D’Amelio, too.