Music is a Global Connector: New Research Lists USA at Top of Global Influential Music Index

Legendary German Singer Herbert Gronemeyer in Berlin, Germany.

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“Hey, Mister DJ, put a record on I wanna dance with my baby. And when the music starts I never wanna stop it’s gonna drive me crazy.” “Music” by Madonna

Legendary German Singer Herbert Gronemeyer in Berlin, Germany.
Legendary German Singer Herbert Gronemeyer in Berlin, Germany.

Music is a global connector and it’s part of the travel experience. No matter where I’ve traveled in the world, I always hear American songs. And everywhere I’ve been, from Afghanistan to Vietnam and Brazil to Japan, there’s one specific song I’ve always heard. After reviewing a new report about the influence of music, it’s not surprising why I hear songs by U.S. artists no matter where in the world I go.

Music Makes the World Go Round

Medimops, a momox GmbH brand and Europe’s largest online marketplace for second-hand cd’s and records, recently released the data-driven study showing the countries that exert the most musical influence worldwide.

From a press release, “medimops wanted to see if they could contribute to the time-honoured debate of which nation influenced whom using a unique data-driven approach.”

Sing for Hope in New York City.
Sing for Hope in New York City.

To determine each of 30 country’s musical output and reach, medimops looked at modern music streaming services. Results ranked countries with the “greatest impact on the global music landscape.”

They looked into how each country:

  • Fosters the development of local music including number of music schools and major labels
  • Local demand and support of live music
  • Percentage of people working in the music industry
  • How popular a country was for major concerts over the last five years.
  • Musical output on four different genres – pop, electronic, rock, and classical.

The result is the first-ever Global Influential Music Index.

This is a sample of the full results, which you can find here:

Findings include:

  • USA ranks #1 out of 30 overall.
  • Artists whose music is streamed the most around the world come from the USA, followed by the UK, Canada, South Korea, France, Germany, Puerto Rico, Australia, Spain and Sweden.
  • Ed Sheeran is the most played music act on streaming services globally, followed by Billie Eilish and Post Malone.
  • Russia produces the most Classical music, while the USA produces the most Rock, Pop and Electronic.
  • Brazil has the highest World Music Uniqueness score, meaning its folk and traditional music is the most distinct from the other countries in the index, followed by Colombia and Ireland.

Read the full Global Influential Music Index report to review the methodology and findings.

International Appeal of “Hotel California”

The song I always hear when traveling abroad is “Hotel California” by the Eagles. I remember watching my Japanese hosts singing it during my first week in Japan in 2004. During my 2016 trip to Vietnam, I was surprised I hadn’t heard it, even after visiting the Hard Rock Café in Ho Chi Minh City. On my last day, a man on a motorbike pulled up and shared his top favorite U.S. songs and number was – Hotel California! If you haven’t seen it, check out the video of Mr. Tung.

Connect with Music-centric Seminars with Context Conversations

Looking to connect with the global music scene from the comfort of your home? Check out Context Conversations, they offer scholar-led virtual learning for the intellectually curious and have a menu of music-centric seminars. Use code SOLOTRAVELGIRL to save 15%.


Solo Travel Girl

Jennifer A. Huber is the voice behind Solo Travel Girl. She's an award-winning travel and outdoor blogger and writer in Southwest Florida. Originally from Buffalo, N.Y., a hiking trail led her to a career path in the tourism industry for more than 30 years. She spent a decade with a park management company in Yellowstone, Death Valley, and Everglades National Parks. She founded the travel blog, with the goal of inspiring others to travel alone, not lonely. Jennifer holds a Travel Marketing Professional certification from the Southeast Tourism Society, is a certified food judge, member of the NASA Social community, and alum of the FBI Citizens Academy. When not traveling, she is either in the kitchen, practicing her photography skills, or road tripping with her dog, Radcliff.

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