If there's any overarching lesson to learn in 2016, it's that the truth can't be found in only one place.
Thanks to an increasingly fractured music environment, a song may be completely unknown to one group of people and an absolute smash with another, albums can rack up millions of streams on Apple Music and not even exist on Spotify, and artists can find new life for their music through non-musical channels.
Case in point, "Panda." While the former triple-Platinum, number one smash currently sits at number 43 on the overall Billboard charts, this month it topped the Top TV Songs charts (which is now a real thing), experiencing a surge of 29,000 downloads sold and 39 million U.S. streams in October thanks to a recent placement on the TV show Blackish.
Desiigner's not the only one reaping TV's benefits. Jeremih's "Oui" placed third on the TV Songs Chart thanks to an appearance on episode 6 of Donald Glover's Atlanta, and Drake's "Feel No Ways" benefited from a spot on HBO's Insecure (which also opened its season with Kendrick Lamar's "Alright").
Now more than ever, long after an artist's time on the charts fades, if their music ever appears there at all, there's a larger media environment with more avenues open to promote your music—and make money from your music—than the typical music industry landscape. Daz Dillinger is still making millions off songs he wrote years ago, and no matter what Desiigner's career ends up looking like, he could be eating well off of publishing checks for the rest of his life.
Not too shabby for a beat he bought off YouTube for $200.
By Nathan S, occasional keyboard hitter and beard maintainer. This is his Twitter.
Photo Credit:Just Jared