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The Soundtrack of 2018: Rap reigns supreme in UK music as Deezer reveals the most streamed artists and tracks of the year

Rap and hip hop have been revealed as the nation's most popular music genre of 2018, experiencing a huge surge in popularity in the UK over the past year, according to global streaming service Deezer's annual 'year in music' report, which was released today (Friday 30th November).

Drake, Eminem and Post Malone were revealed as three of the top four most streamed artists in the UK in 2018, with even Ed Sheeran, who took the third spot, dabbling in the genre.

Globally, J Balvin was revealed as the most streamed artist worldwide in 2018, while Dua Lipa the most streamed female artist in the UK.

The global music streaming service's annual Deezer Year in Music report has revealed the soundtrack of 2018, using its official user data of the top streamed artists and songs of the entire year in the UK and worldwide.

Latin urban artist J Balvin dominated the charts around the world and is the number one streamed worldwide artist of 2018, with his song 'X' ranking number 2 in the Deezer global charts. An incredible feat in under 12 months, climbing 25 spots since 2017 from his previous position as 26th most streamed artist globally.

While Ariana Grande and Anne-Marie grabbed the UK's attention as some of the top streamers, Dua Lipa took the crown for the no.1 top streamed female. Dua also secured the most streamed track of the entire year globally with her Calvin Harris collaboration 'One Kiss'. Across the world, Brazilian singer Anitta entered the global top 10 most streamed charts and is the number one streamed female worldwide.

For male artists in the UK, XXXTentacion continued to captivate audiences and actor Hugh Jackman proved popular as a top 10 streamed artist this year through The Greatest Showman movie soundtrack album. For the bands, Imagine Dragons moved to first place in the UK, ahead of last year's no.1 streamed band Little Mix. Both the UK and global's previous overall frontrunner, Ed Sheeran, still achieved a top 3 position this year, despite not releasing new music since 2017. Tracks released last year has also formed an overall trend for 2018, with 11 of the top 20 streamed tracks in the UK from 2017.

Interestingly, the UK's top streamed track of 2018 varied across age groups. While Drake pulled in the younger audience, for 36-45 year olds The Greatest Showman's 'This Is Me' by Keala Settleover came out top.  Those 56+ again preferred something different, with Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa's 'One Kiss' and Tom Walker's 'Leave a Light On' instead ranked as no.1 and no.10 respectively for the older audience.

Deezer's Global VP of Artist Marketing at Deezer, Sulinna Ong, commented: "The standout act this year is J Balvin, proving that it's possible for a non-English speaking act to break through internationally and create music that appeals to audiences all over the world - he is a bonafide globalsuperstar. 2018 has also been Dua Lipa's year, as she's consistently stayed at the top of our streaming charts. Artist collaborations were huge this year too, with 70% of the top 10 streamed songs being collabs. It's clear that people love hearing artists working together like this. We are also happy to see our Deezer NEXT 2017 artist, Anne Marie, rising into the top 20 and go from strength to strength."

Want to know your most streamed tracks this year? Later this month, Deezer will reveal your own favourites with its new 'Top Songs 2018' playlist, holding 40 of your own most played and favorite songs from the entire year.

Below is the full list of top streamed UK and worldwide artists and tracks in 2018. Head to to discover more.


The top 10 streamed UK artists 2018:

  1. Drake
  2. Eminem
  3. Ed Sheeran
  4. Post Malone
  5. Dua Lipa
  6. XXXTentacion
  7. David Guetta
  8. Calvin Harris
  9. Ariana Grande
  10. Imagine Dragons


The top 10 streamed songs in the UK 2018:

  1. God's Plan - Drake
  2. One Kiss - Dua Lipa
  3. These Days (feat. Jess Glynne, Macklemore & Dan Caplen) - Rudimental
  4. FRIENDS - Marshmello
  5. This Is Me - Keala Settle
  6. River - Eminem
  7. IDGAF - Dua Lipa
  8. Shotgun - George Ezra
  9. Barking - Ramz
  10. Tip Toe (feat. French Montana) - Jason Derulo


The UK top streamed female artists 2018

  1. Dua Lipa
  2. Ariana Grande
  3. Anne-Marie
  4. Camila Cabello
  5. Rihanna
  6. Nicki Minaj
  7. Mabel
  8. Keala Settle
  10. Sia


UK top streamed male 2018

  1. Drake
  2. Eminem
  3. Ed Sheeran
  4. Post Malone
  5. XXXTentacion
  6. David Guetta
  7. Calvin Harris
  8. Marshmello
  9. George Ezra
  10. Hugh Jackman


UK top streamed band 2018

  1. Imagine Dragons
  2. Little Mix
  3. Coldplay
  4. Clean Bandit
  5. Arctic Monkeys
  6. Oasis
  7. Maroon 5
  8. Rudimental
  9. Queen
  10. Panic! At the Disco


The top 10 streamed global artists 2018:

  1. J Balvin
  2. Ed Sheeran
  3. Drake
  4. Jul
  5. David Guetta
  6. Damso
  7. Maître Gims
  8. XXXTentacion
  9. Imagine Dragons
  10. Anitta


The top 10 streamed songs worldwide 2018:

  1. One Kiss - Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa
  2. - J Balvin
  3. God's Plan - Drake
  4. Shape of You - Ed Sheeran
  5. Havana - Camila Cabello
  6. FRIENDS - Marshmello & Anne-Marie
  7. Échame la Culpa - Luis Fonsi
  8. Mafiosa (feat. Caroliina) - Lartiste
  9. Flames - David Guetta
  10. SAD! - XXXTentacion

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