FSD Feature: Just How Popular Are Your Favorite Chicago Artists? We Consult Google

Andrew Barber

Words by Ryan Chandler (@NayrRyChi)

It goes without saying that technology has changed the world in many ways. Music, in particular, has seen several advances in the past 15 years, having shifted from physical culture to download culture to streaming culture. The shift in technology has made it easier for artists to create their own platforms and fanbases, with eliminating the long-looming middleman.

Fans can give an artist’s name a quick Google search and immediately connect to their entire catalog. Finding information on your favorite musician is literally a double click away. Good or bad, it’s also broken down the walls of regionalism, making local sounds and scenes harder and harder to distinguish. Trap in Atlanta influenced Drill in Chicago, which has spread to NYC artists who now make a blend of the two (see: Bobby Shmurda.)

The Chicago music scene owes much of its current success to the internet, Google and the digital wave. In the past decade, interest in Chicago hip-hop has skyrocketed with no signs of slowing down, despite what critics may have you believe. But thanks to free tools that Google provides, we can take a closer look at exactly what emcees are being searched for and how. Behaviors are analyzed and data is king. Numbers don’t lie, so dip into them below.


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