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Bad Bunny is music’s biggest act

most-streamed-spotify-artist-bad-bunny-thefutureparty
Bad Bunny // Illustration by Kate Walker

Bad Bunny is music’s biggest act

 

Future. Bad Bunny’s (real name Benito Antonio Martinez Ocasio) current tour is expected to generate $100 million in sales (after his past few albums have pretty much broken every record). His popularity shows that Latin music may currently be the biggest genre in the world and that Bad Bunny — who is expanding into acting, design, and business — may be the biggest artist in the world. So, why is Latin representation in popular media still so dismal?

Tour hopping

After multiplying on the charts, the world is Bad Bunny’s carrot.

  • He released three(!) albums in 2020 — YHLQMDLG (most streamed album on Spotify that year), Las que no iban a salir, and El Último Tour Del Mundo (first all-Spanish album to top the Billboard 200).
  • But the top streaming act on Spotify (for two years running) couldn’t start touring the new music until last April.
  • When the tickets finally went on sale, it became the most in-demand tour in the world, selling out in minutes and leaving hundreds of thousands of fans in ticket-provider waiting rooms — millions of dollars left on the table.
  • The Puerto Rican rapper sold 300,000 tickets alone last month and regularly plays in front of 16,000 people a night (in both arenas and stadiums). 
  • The arena tour alone is projected to generate $100 million in sales when the dust settles.

Bad Bunny’s 2019 tour grossed $36.9 million and was especially popular in Latin America, North America, and Europe.

Latin love

Bad Bunny’s historic rise shows the exploding popularity of Latin music around the world. According to Bloomberg, his shows were the most in-demand in key Latin strongholds such as Mexico, Spain, Chile, and U.S. cities like Miami, L.A., and Dallas. Latin artists have been topping both YouTube and Spotify charts for the past several years. And in 2020, the RIAA reported that Latin music was the fastest-growing genre in the U.S. music market.

Toni Wallace, co-head of global music brand partnerships at UTA, said that “Latin is at the forefront of every conversation right now in the brand space,” …and that is something Bad Bunny has been keen on tapping. After signing with the agency, he created a shoe line with Adidas, signed a partnership with Airbnb, and booked roles in both Netflix’s Narcos: Mexico and Sony’s upcoming Bullet Train… all in roughly two years.All that to say: Is Bad Bunny only going to get bigger?

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