Drake Dominates, While R&B/Hip-Hop & Country Shine on Artist 100

Kris Connor/Getty Images
Drake performs during the 2015 Landmark Music Festival at West Potomac Park on September 26, 2015 in Washington, DC.   

Drake, The Weeknd & Fetty Wap rank at Nos. 1, 2 and 3, respectively, marking a second week of hip-hop artists in the top three. Plus, three country stars surge into the top 10.

Drake remains the top musical act in the U.S., holding atop the Billboard Artist 100 chart (dated Oct. 17). Meanwhile, The Weeknd (3-2) and Fetty Wap (7-3, returning to his high point) keep hip-hop represented strongly on the survey and three country acts soar to the top 10.

Last week, Drake, Future (2-5) and The Weeknd placed at Nos. 1, 2 and 3, respectively, marking the first time that the top three belonged to a trio of R&B/hip-hop acts (dating to the chart's July 2014 premiere). So, the genre's streak continues this week, with Fetty Wap replacing Future in the top three.

The Artist 100 measures artist activity across Billboard's most influential charts, including the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, Top Album Sales and the Social 50. The Artist 100 blends data measuring album and track sales, radio airplay, streaming and social media fan interaction to provide a weekly multi-dimensional ranking of artist popularity.

Drake holds atop the Artist 100, totaling a fourth cumulative week at No. 1, despite a 31 percent decrease in overall activity. What a Time to Be Alive, his mixtape album with Future, falls 1-5 in its second week on the Top Album Sales chart with an 82 percent drop to 61,000 in pure album sales (in the week ending Oct. 1, according to Nielsen Music). Still, he gains by 25 percent in streams after the collaborative set reached Spotify Sept. 28.

Joining Drake, The Weeknd, Fetty Wap and Future in the Artist 100's top five, Taylor Swift holds at No. 4.

Don Henley's 'County' Is King of Country Chart

Meanwhile, three artists, all country, reach the Artist 100's top 10 for the first time: Thomas Rhett rockets 33-7, George Strait re-enters at No. 8 (after first ranking as high as No. 17 a year ago) and Don Henley debuts at No. 9. All three are fueled heavily by album debuts, although, notably, they begin in reverse order on Top Album Sales and Top Country Albums, where Henley's Cass County opens with 87,000 sold, followed by Strait's Cold Beer Conversation (82,000) and Rhett's Tangled Up (63,000). Rhett ranks highest among the three on the Artist 100, however, thanks to his significantly greater impact at country radio, while Strait charts higher than Henley aided by a substantial lead in digital song sales.

Check out the entire Artist 100 here.