Streaming Masters – R.E.M.

REM 1983

The year 1991 may be the biggest of all-time in terms of blockbuster albums with Metallica, Nirvana, Michael Jackson, U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Pearl Jam, Guns ‘N Roses (x2), Garth Brooks, Bryan Adams, Genesis, and Enya dropping some of the biggest records of the last 40 years.

The one which kicked this insane era is Out of Time, the global breakthrough of R.E.M. Today, we review streaming statistics of the American alternative scene icons.

R.E.M. streaming review – the method

Streaming is made up of audio and video streams. Our CSPC methodology now includes both to better reflect the real popularity of each track. The main source of data for each avenue is respectively Spotify and YouTube.

To factor in the growing impact of multiple Asian countries where these platforms aren’t always the go-to site for music streaming, more sources have been added.

In order to account for their real popularity in each relevant country, the below sources have been used along with the mentioned ratios that reflect the market share of each area.

Audio Streams
– South Korea : Genie streams * 3.05 (consistent with Gaon streaming numbers)
– Japan : AWA streams * 100/5.5 (AWA has 5.5% of the Japanese streaming market)– Elsewhere : Spotify streams * (370 – 8.5 – 9.5 – 33 – 9) / 207 (370 million global subscribers minus 8.5 million from South Korea minus 9.5 million from Japan minus 33 million from China divided by the number of Spotify only users minus 9 million more Asian users) + Genie streams * 3.05 (uses Genie rather than Spotify to extrapolate markets like Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam)

Video Streams– China* : QQ video streams * 50 if the song is available for audio stream, QQ video streams * 5 elseway (scale built based on known figures for several major artists)– Elsewhere : Youtube views

*since 96.4% of Chinese streaming platforms are free users, that paid-for users pay less than $2 a month and that they are also used as video streaming platforms, their streams are weighted on par with YouTube streams.

Audio Stream value – 1500 plays equal 1 album unit
Video Stream value – 11,750 views equal 1 album unit

Equivalent Albums Sales (EAS) = ( Spotify * 310/207 + Genie * 3.05*2 + AWA * 100/5.5 ) / 1500 + ( QQ views* 50(or 5) + YouTube ) / 11750

R.E.M. streaming review – the results

CSPC REM full discography streaming statistics

Total: 5,208,141 EAS

R.E.M. Most streamed tracks (EAS)

1. Losing My Religion [Out of Time]828,000
2. Everybody Hurts [Automatic for the People]275,000
3. Shiny Happy People [Out of Time]174,000
4. It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine) [Document]143,000
5. Man on the Moon [Automatic for the People]107,000
6. The One I Love [Document]73,000
7. Drive [Automatic for the People]54,000
8. Nightswimming [Automatic for the People]51,000
9. Imitation of Life [Reveal]38,000
10. Orange Crush [Green]32,000
11. What’s the Frequency, Kenneth? [Monster]30,000
12. Stand [Green]27,000
13. Find the River [Automatic for the People]23,000
14. The Sidewinder Sleeps Tonite [Automatic for the People]18,000
15. Bad Day [Orphan]17,000
16. Radio Free Europe [Murmur]15,000
17. Leaving New York [Around the Sun]14,000
18. The Great Beyond [Orphan]12,000
19. Daysleeper [Up]10,000
20. At My Most Beautiful [Up]10,000

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Clockingbell

As an historian, I like to explain why 1991 was a year of so much succesful acts, and a lot of them alternative indeed untill then. I like to see a correlation with the end of the Cold War and alternative rock as a way of criticising the new normal. Amy thoughts on this?

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