Google Play has just revealed its most streamed songs for the month of September. Four of the top five are EDM songs, from the likes of The Chainsmokers, Major Lazer and Calvin Harris, although in some cases, it's their featured collaborator's star power that may have helped seal their success.
Electronic Dance Music, or EDM, has slowly but surely been taking over the pop music charts these days, thanks in part to collaborations between established pop stars looking to push the envelope by working with some of EDMs most successful DJs and producers.
One of the first and biggest success stories was the partnership between Justin Bieber and the super duo of EDM producers Skrillex and Diplo, otherwise known as Jack Ü. The combination spearheaded Bieber's comeback with the release of "Where Are U Now." The song not only reached the top 10 of Billboard's Hot 100 chart, it also spearheaded a comeback for the singer, who gained a new more mature and diverse audience as a result.
The Bieber-Jack Ü collaboration paved the way for the runaway success of his Purpose album, which featured two number one songs, both produced by Skrillex, "What Do You Mean" and "Sorry." It also helped educate more listeners about the pleasures of listening to EDM, and now the electronic music genre seems to be enjoying the dividends with unprecedented success on the pop charts.
The latest proof of that comes in the form of Google Play's most recent revelation of its most streamed songs of the past month. Four out of the five top songs are EDM tracks, with only Drake's "One Dance" bucking the trend, and even that song features some electronic music production elements.
The top streamed song on the list is none other than "Closer" by The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey, no surprise, as the track dominated the pop charts in September. The Chainsmokers also nailed down the number three song, "Don't Let Me Down," this time featuring vocals from Daya. Justin Bieber's latest EDM collaboration with Diplo's Major Lazer project came in at number four with "Cold Water," and EDM vet Calvin Harris rounded out the top five with his Rihanna collab, "This Is What You Came For."
Interestingly, what all four of those tracks have in common besides their EDM style is that each one features a collaboration with a featured vocalist. In fact, it'd be easy to argue that the presence of Bieber and Rihanna on their respective tracks drove those songs successes more than any other element, implying that perhaps it is not EDM but the added superstar power that is really behind the genre's latest breakthrough.
That theory however, is contradicted by the success of The Chainsmokers. Both songs by the duo earned their stripes not because of the previous popularity of their featured singers but instead based on the songs themselves. Daya was basically unknown before the release, and although Halsey had a somewhat successful first album, she had never managed a hit song, with her closest attempt being a number 31 showing on "The Feeling," her 2015 collaboration with, ironically, Justin Bieber. In addition, Halsey shares vocals on "Closer" with The Chainsmokers' very own Andrew Taggart, who sings the male lead.
So it appears that despite the huge boost from some of the genre's collaborative stars, EDM has begun making real inroads with respect to the pop charts, and the genre's first legitimate crossover stars may very well be New York natives The Chainsmokers, who, rather than enlisting the help of an established pop star, have pretty much made it all on their own.