Top of the pops: Finland’s favourite music of 2018 revealed

Domestic acts beat out foreign stars when it comes to the music that Finns like to stream.

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File picture of vinyl records / Credit: iStock

Domestic artists are holding their own against international music stars, according to the latest listening habits of Spotify users in Finland.

The most popular artist in 2018 is Finnish performer Cheek, who drew the curtain on his rap career in August with a spectacular final show. Right behind that in the number two spot is rap due JVG, who had a number one hit single this year with their track Popkorni.

While American performers Eminem and XXXTENTACION landed at number three and four on the charts, Finnish rapper Pyhimys – which means Saint in English – rounded out the top five.

The love of hip hop and rap reflects global trends as well, but with home-grown artists in hot demand.

“There’s been a steady increase in the global interest of the hiphop genre, but looking at Finland the interest for hip hop in Finnish in particular has been high for years” says Anton Lozinski from Spotify. 

The most streamed female artists for Finnish Spotify listeners is dominated by local acts. Sanni, Evelina, Ellinoora and Jenni Vartiainen are joined by Australian singer-songwriter Sia on the top five list.

Local vs global

Globally, acts like Drake, Post Malone, Arianna Grande, Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran feature strongly in Spotify’s most-streamed lists – and Sheeran just clocked two billion streams for his 2017 song Shape of You.

So the amount of domestic artists being listened to compared with foreign artists here in Finland, is rather unusual.

“It’s really interesting to see how the global top lists differ a lot from the Finnish top lists in terms of most played songs and artists. Compared to our Nordic neighbors Denmark is the only other country with that high percentage of local artists and songs on their local top 10” Lozinski tells News Now Finland.

“Finnish artists are very close to the Finnish audience, and although Spotify users can access over 40 million songs music fans generally turn to music that is culturally relevant for them” he explains.