Nielsen's Mid-Year 2016 Charts: Drake, Beyonce & Rihanna Rule R&B/Hip-Hop

Caitlin Cronenberg
Drake photographed in 2016.

Drake, Beyonce and Rihanna ruled R&B and hip-hop music in the first half of 2016, according to Nielsen Music. The trio sees their respective albums Views, Lemonade and Anti finish as the Nos. 1, 2 and 3 most popular albums of the January-June time period.

Views rules with 2,609,000 equivalent album units earned in the tracking period of Jan. 1 through June 30, 2016. (Equivalent album units are comprised of traditional album sales, track equivalent albums [TEA] and streaming equivalent albums [SEA].)

Drake’s Views is also the year’s top selling album, with 1,313,000 copies sold. Beyonce’s Lemonade isn’t too far behind, with 1,202,000 copies. Total R&B/hip-hop album sales in the first half of 2016 were up 2.5 percent compared to the same time frame a year ago (19,232,000 versus 18,766,000).

Drake's 'Views,' Adele's '25' & Rihanna's 'Work' Lead Nielsen's Overall Mid-Year 2016 Charts

Among all genres of music, overall album consumption (album sales plus TEA and SEA), totaled 279.9 million units for the first six months of 2016 (up 9 percent compared to the 257 million of the first half of 2015). R&B/hip-hop albums represented 22.6 percent of the 2016 figure.

The late Prince, who died on April 21, places a pair of titles in the top 10 of the Mid-Year Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums list, with The Very Best of Prince at No. 4 (905,000 units) and the Purple Rain soundtrack at No. 9 (595,000 units).

The top selling R&B/hip-hop digital song is Rihanna’s “Work,” featuring Drake, with 1,610,000 downloads sold. Drake is also in the No. 2 slot, with his own “One Dance,” featuring WizKid and Kyla, selling 1,442,000 downloads.

In the world of on-demand streams, “Work” is also the top streamed song -- in combined audio and video streams -- with 511,454,000 streams. “One Dance” is the most streamed audio track (286,396,000) and Desiigner’s “Panda” is the top video stream (269,382,000).

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Based on Overall Equivalent Album Units)
1. Drake, Views (2,609,000 units)
2. Beyonce, Lemonade (1,687,000 units)
3. Rihanna, Anti (1,272,000 units)
4. Prince, The Very Best of Prince (905,000 units)
5. The Weeknd, Beauty Behind the Madness (708,000 units)
6. Kevin Gates, Islah (690,000 units)
7. Bryson Tiller, Trapsoul (656,000 units)
8. G-Eazy, When It’s Dark Out (605,000 units)
9. Prince and the Revolution, Purple Rain (Soundtrack) (595,000 units)
10. Future, Evol (487,000 units)

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 Selling R&B/Hip-Hop Albums
1. Drake, Views (1,313,000)
2. Beyonce, Lemonade (1,202,000)
3. Prince, The Very Best of Prince (575,000)
4. Rihanna, Anti (480,000)
5. Prince and the Revolution, Purple Rain (Soundtrack) (413,000)
6. Kevin Gates, Islah (307,000)
7. Kendrick Lamar, Untitled Unmastered (245,000)
8. The Weeknd, Beauty Behind the Madness (240,000)
9. Bryson Tiller, Trapsoul (186,000)
10. Future, Evol (163,000)

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 Selling Digital R&B/Hip-Hop Songs
1. Rihanna featuring Drake, “Work” (1,610,000)
2. Drake featuring WizKid & Kyla, “One Dance” (1,442,000)
3. Desiigner, “Panda” (1,211,000)
4. G-Eazy x Bebe Rexha, “My, Myself & I” (1,085,000)
5. Kevin Gates, “2 Phones” (589,000)
6. Beyonce, “Sorry” (577,000)
7. Beyonce, “Formation” (566,000)
8. Prince and the Revolution, “Purple Rain” (563,000)
9. Rihanna, “Needed Me” (550,000)
10. Drake & Future, “Jumpman” (516,000)

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 On-Demand R&B/Hip-Hop Song Streams (Audio and Video Combined)
1. Rihanna featuring Drake, “Work” (511,454,000)
2. Desiigner, “Panda” (467,379,000)
3. Drake featuring WizKid & Kyla, “One Dance” (308,826,000)
4. G-Eazy x BeBe Rexha, “Me, Myself & I” (287,242,000)
5. Rihanna, “Needed Me” (240,847,000)
6. Bryson Tiller, “Don’t” (240,801,000)
7. Kevin Gates, “2 Phones” (222,027,000)
8. Future featuring The Weeknd, “Low Life” (221,754,000)
9. Bryson Tiller, “Exchange” (207,638,000)
10. Jeremih, “Oui” (195,318,000)

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 On-Demand R&B/Hip-Hop Audio Streams
1. Drake featuring WizKid & Kyla, “One Dance” (286,396,000)
2. Rihanna featuring Drake, “Work” (249,625,000)
3. Desiigner, “Panda” (197,997,000)
4. G-Eazy x Bebe Rexha, “Me, Myself & I” (180,962,000)
5. Rihanna, “Needed Me” (146,364,000)
6. Bryson Tiller, “Don’t” (136,617,000)
7. Drake & Future, “Jumpman” (136,347,000)
8. Drake featuring The Throne, “Pop Style” (130,231,000)
9. Future featuring The Weeknd, “Low Life” (125,543,000)
10. Bryson Tiller, “Exchange” (117,665,000)

2016’s Mid-Year Top 10 On-Demand R&B/Hip-Hop Video Streams
1. Desiigner, “Panda” (269,382,000)
2. Rihanna featuring Drake, “Work” (261,829,000)
3. Silento, “Watch Me” (152,687,000)
4. Kevin Gates, “2 Phones” (115,024,000)
5. G-Eazy x Bebe Rexha, “Me, Myself & I” (106,281,000)
6. Bryson Tiller, “Don’t” (104,184,000)
7. Yo Gotti, “Down In the DM” (99,330,000)
8. Wiz Khalifa featuring Charlie Puth, “See You Again” (99,262,000)
9. Jeremih, “Oui” (96,298,000)
10. Future featuring The Weeknd, “Low Life” (96,211,000)