How TikTok is taking over the music charts

TikTok logo

What actually IS TikTok?

TikTok, owned by Chinese media company ByteDance, has exploded with popularity since 2018. When it took the place of lip-syncing app Musical.ly. TikTok has over 500 million active users daily, resultingly placing number 1 on ITunes free apps. 

Although TikTok thrives off of meme culture and viral trends, Music has always been a key part of TikTok. The discovery of music from up and coming artists has become a huge part of the apps identity. On the short-form video app, popular with 11-25 year olds. Users typically share 15-second clips of themselves dancing, lip-syncing or doing comedy skits, most often set to music. Users can create their own original audios, or use songs from the charts or other creators. 

“Once you’re on TikTok all the time, you start to get the sounds stuck in your head and you can just search up the lyrics to find the real song you’ve been dying to listen to. All of my friends have TikTok, and they find music like me all the time.” @Laurenmcd12 -Twitter.

The app is incredibly successful in springboarding lesser known artists into the charts.  Impacting pop music, it became a staging ground for hits — Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road,” a very famous example finishing 2019 as Billboard Hot 100’s “Song of the Year. But also Ambjay’s “Uno,” Y2k and bbno$’s “Lalala,” and now Lizzo’s “Good as Hell” — before they crash into the mainstream. “Roxanne” by Arizona Zervas, “Dance Monkey” by Tones and I, and “Say So” by Doja Cat. All of which have already cracked the Billboard Top 100 at some point.

“Break My Stride” began trending on TikTok earlier this year and has since been used in well over 800,000 videos on the app, while the hashtag #breakmystride has been viewed nearly 100 million times.

“Break My Stride” recently landed on Spotify’s Viral 50 playlists in the US and the UK and was on Apple Music’s Top 100 chart in over 20 countries.

A song can feel old or be considered old after a week. Spaces like TikTok allow artists and their music to continue growing. I believe artists will continue to post their music to Tiktok in hopes the app will boost popularity onto other apps such as Spotify and Youtube. It will continue to grow and evolve… Carbon TikTok coming soon?