2018 Most Anticipated Albums

2017 is the year Kanye’s prophesy officially came true.

Written by: Jeff Williams | @Jeffaraoh
COSIGN Magazine – @BlackpackDallas

Remember that 2013 Kanye West Interview with Zane Lowe? Where he suggested, Rap is the New Rock n Roll?


Well, for the first time since Nielsen started measuring music consumption in the United States, rock, which still makes up 40% of total album sales, is no longer the top genre in terms of overall consumption. Kanye may have been right back then, but the numbers didn’t truly support it in 2013. So the musical genius looked like a mad crazy black Uncle.

But the year is 2017, and the numbers added up.

The crown now belongs to the combined genre of Hip-Hop/R&B!

The way in which people consume music has drastically changed, and now more than ever we have access to track popularity and consumption stronger than years.

According to the Nielsen report, R&B and hip-hop are now responsible for 25.1% of all music consumption in the U.S., while rock claims 23%.
Looking at the rest of the numbers listed that dissect how people are consuming these styles of music, it’s clear that streaming is to thank for the swap in ranking. Rock genre claims 40% of all album sales in the country — but the total number of records actually purchased dwindles every year. While that percentage may remain steady it’s not representative of how Americans are truly consuming music.

Streaming is king and the only growing consumption category! And Hip Hop/R&B is responsible for over 29% of all on-demand streams across the country.

In fact, R&B/hip-hop is almost as popular on streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music than the next two genres (rock and pop) combined.
Thus, shout out to the following artists who dominated the charts and carried the culture of the hump: Cardi B(Bodak Yellow), Kendrick Lamar(DAMN, the most popular in any genre the first half of 2017), Lil Uzi Vert (XO Tour Lif3), Migos(Bad and Boujee), Drake(More Life) and many others.

Hip-Hop/R&B spread its wings in 2017. It will be marked in history as the year it became the dominating music genre. Now it’s time to fly! What’s next?

In order for the trend to continue, 2018 will have to be a hit. There are many projects slated for 2018, and I can’t wait for them to push the genre further ahead.

Here are some artists that I am looking forward to dropping an album in 2018 in no particular order:

1. Drake: He’s been off the charts for too long. Kendrick and Jay-Z had more popular albums in 2017. And he’s since been off the Billboard Top for a while. Drake lives to be number 1. I’m sure he’s carrying that into 2018. I expect hit. More, More, More hits.

2. Nas: I thought the OG’s album was done in 2016? OG, what happened? It’s been 18 months. Can you come on out? Conscious culture won in 2017. The stage is set for you!

3. Beyonce: Girls love Beyonce. Therefore, I love Beyonce. And she is the new King/Queen of pop. It’ll be interesting to see her shift in messaging after the release of Lemonade and 4:44. What’s next?

4. Rihanna: Her last album brought men to the table. It was Gritty. It was certainly Travis $cotty. More of that, please. If her appearance on N.E.R.D.’s Lemon is a hint of what’s next for her, then we should certainly expect more bars.

5. Kanye West: it’s only right. He told us “We the culture!” And the culture needs more Ye. I expect album of the year.

6. Nicki Minaj: Cardi B owned 2017. No question. And she did it without an album. Nicki of old had bars, and when she went pop and away from Safaree, she made way for another female rapper to challenge her grit. This may be the competition she needed. I foresee a rap heavy project from Nicki in 2018!

7. Chance the Rapper: Trust the process, don’t rush the process. Chance made it clear you can’t rush projects. Inspiration is key and moving without inspiration waters down the masterpiece. I would love for him to finally be inspired to drop an LP (technically speaking) in 2018!

8. Rae Sremmurd: They are hip-hop rock stars. An album from them will undoubtedly be a fun, lifestyle playlist for the summer and festival months!

9. Travis Scott: “Butterfly Effect” and Huncho Jack were hearty appetizers. Bring on AstroWorld!

10. Justin Timberlake: I know the culture can be hot and cold on him for obvious reasons. However, he is 100% R&B. He is also 100% overdue. The 20/20 Experience was a masterpiece. Is he inspired to drop in 2018? I heard that it is the case. Why else would he perform at the Super Bowl this February? Lets get it!

What albums are you cosigning in 2018? Let us know. I am certain we left some anticipate heat off of the list. We are looking forward to hearing from you!

Happy New Year!

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