about 3 months ago

If you use Spotify, you might have noticed their viral charts, by country or global. 

A New Metric

The viral charts are put together by a metric that take into account songs' virality, which means how often a song is shared.

What that means is popular songs of course chart on Spotify's Viral Charts, but so can other songs. It's proven to be able to catch a cool, unheard sound, or a moment in time.

In other words there are three types of songs that do well on Spotify's Viral Charts: a major hit, a new sound, and a moment in time.

The Big Hit


Think any major hit by a major artist, be it Roar by Katy Perry, Sorry by Justin Bieber, or whatever Adele releases.

Cool, Unheard Sound


Examples of songs that have been rapidly shared and therefore featured on Spotify's viral charts as they make their way to global fame are Royal by Lorde and Lean On by Major Lazer.

A Moment in Time

A moment in time would be a song that got featured in an ad, or a TV show, or a movie.

Think Everything is AWESOME!!! from the Lego Movie, Jennifer Lawrence's The Hanging Tree from The Hunger Games Soundtrack, or the viral wonder that was the Chainsmokers' #SELFIE.

The Viral Charts Playlists

It’s interesting to have one list featuring the best of current songs, exciting new talent, and a bit of humour and randomness.

The article listed the number one hits on the Viral Charts in the US in 2013–2014, which we put together into a playlist so it's easy to scroll through.

Super Dated, or Still Fresh

The #1s are from April 2013 – July 2014, so it's been a while. Scrolling through the list, some of the songs feel super dated such as #SELFIE, Young & Beautiful, and Roar.

Others, particularly of the “Cool, New Sound” persuasion have been working their way into the minds of the public at a more slow and steady pace and therefore feel more recently “current”.

Haim’s The Wire and FKA Twig’s Two Weeks come to mind. Others are even less familiar, and therefore don’t feel dated at all.

The Epitome of Organic Growth – Royals by Lorde

Spotify shared this fantastic graph of the growth of Lorde's breakout single Royals. It's interesting to see how the viral charts managed to grab what was one of the most memorable break-out artist of recent years. 

Cover photo: Lorde's music video Royals 
The big hit: Katy Perry's music video Roar
"Cool, unheard sound": Major Lazer's video Lean On
A moment in time: The Chainsmokers' video #SELFIE
Graph from Spotify article that has since been removed