Music is at the heart of the TikTok experience. It's the glue that connects TikTok's disparate threads, providing a throughline between individuals and communities who bring their own spin to the latest trend. In turn, TikTok occupies a central place in the creation, consumption, and interpretation of modern music. TikTok is a playground where artists and creators can interact, combining their unique sensibilities and talents to propel trends to the forefront of culture. Stars can preview new songs to a legion of hungry fans, who jump at the opportunity to create content inspired by a musical element or favorite lyric.
After turning heads in 2020, TikTok continued its tremendous growth to be a dominant force in music and the music industry in 2021. Approximately 430 songs surpassed 1 billion video views as TikTok sounds in 2021–a threefold increase over 2020. The most popular of these songs approach, and even exceed, 20 billion views on videos they soundtrack. The staggering view counts on TikTok do not exist in a vacuum, but directly translate to commercial success for trending songs and artists. Over 175 songs that trended on TikTok in 2021 charted on the Billboard Hot 100, twice as many as last year.
“TikTok opens the door to new artists, new sounds, underground and DIY scenes as well as the classic hits, connecting them with a global audience and passionate music community like never before. 2021 has been a huge year for music and for TikTok and we’ve been humbled how the industry and so many artists have partnered with us to make this magic happen across so many different countries.
From the Beatles to Sea Shanties, J Balvin to Abba and of course who can forget Taylor Swift's entry - the last 12 months have provided so many music moments, inspired our community of one billion and shown the world that music starts and lives on TikTok”
-- Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok
Power of Two: Most DUETTED Artists
TikTok's Duet feature allows creators to respond to one another and build upon each other's creativity, with results that range from unexpected to funny to artful. Artists and musicians on TIkTok are the perfect subject for the Duet feature, offering fans the opportunity to play along with their song, harmonize with their vocals, or just react to their antics. John Mayer channels his inner music teacher, laying down a six-string groove for fans to jam over or working through the music theory behind his hits, so fans can cover them more easily. Country superstar Tim McGraw used TikTok to encourage creators to harmonize on covers of some of his favorite songs. Platinum-selling producer Kato (@katoproducer) specializes in creating instrumental beats for aspiring rappers to spit over–one of his beats eventually became Reyanna Maria's breakthrough hit "So Pretty." Unofficial Bridgerton Musical co-creator Abigail Barlow taps into TheaterTok, recording instrumentals with lyrics as text on screen so aspiring Broadway performers can show off their vocals, while pianist @ellenonceagain offers a similar service for aspiring pop divas.