Oscars Drive Big Streaming Gains for Sufjan Stevens, Mary J. Blige & More
The five tunes nominated for best original song earned over a million on-demand audio streams on the day of the Academy Awards.
The live ABC TV broadcast on March 4 featured renditions of the five best original song nominees, including Stevens’ “Mystery of Love” from Call Me by Your Name and Blige’s “Mighty River,” from Mudbound.
“Mystery of Love” logged 129,000 on-demand audio streams on March 4, up 60 percent compared to March 3, when it garnered 80,000 plays. Its increase of a little more than 48,000 streams was the largest day-to-day rise among the five nominees. (Presumably, the bulk of the streams earned on Sunday by "Mystery of Love" and the rest of the nominated songs were registered in the hours following the respective performances on the show.)
Blige’s “Mighty River” tallied the largest percentage jump among the nominees, as it soared 321 percent to 20,000 audio streams on Sunday, as compared to 5,000 on Saturday. Blige was nominated alongside her fellow “Mighty River” songwriters, Raphael Saadiq and Taura Stinson. (The best original song category recognizes the writers of a tune, not the performer, unless the performer also wrote the track.)
The winner of the original song Oscar, “Remember Me,” from Coco, scored an 18 percent lift in streams on March 4. It rose to 318,000 on-demand audio clicks, up from 270,000 the previous day. On the Oscars, it was performed first in a lullaby rendition by the film’s Gael Garcia Bernal, and then the performance segued to an uptempo duet by Miguel and Natalia Lafourcade. Both versions are heard in the film.
Many variations of “Remember Me” were recorded for the two Coco soundtrack albums, and all are combined for the purposes of this story. On Sunday, the most popular of all the permutations was Miguel and Lafourcade’s duet, which accounted for 98,000 of “Remember Me’s” streams that day.
“Remember Me” brought home the second Academy Award for its songwriters Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, who previously won the original song Oscar for penning “Let It Go,” from Frozen.
The Greatest Showman’s “This Is Me” — written by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and performed on the Oscars by Keala Settle — collected the most streams, by far, of the nominees on Sunday. It snared 517,000 on-demand audio streams on the day of the Oscars, though it was down 2 percent compared to its haul on Saturday (527,000). The decline in streams for the song is not alarming, as many viewers of the Oscars were likely already familiar with the tune. The song is the only one of the nominees, thus far, to have dented the Billboard Hot 100 chart (hitting a No. 58 high on Jan. 27), and the tune was used frequently during NBC’s television coverage of the Winter Olympics.
The fifth and final song nominee, “Stand Up for Something” — which was written by Diane Warren and Common, and performed on the show by Common and Andra Day — captured a 154 percent jump in on-demand audio streams. The song, from the film Marshall, nabbed 21,000 streams on Sunday, up from 8,000 a day earlier.
Collectively, the nominated songs earned 1 million on-demand audio streams on the day of the Oscars, up 13 percent compared to a day earlier (890,000). If one removed the sizable streams of the hit "This Is Me" — as it represented a whopping 51 percent of the nominees' streams on Sunday — then the rise for the remaining four tunes would equal 34 percent (climbing from 363,000 to 488,000).
Aside from the five original song performances on the Oscars, there was one further performance on the broadcast, from Eddie Vedder. The rocker sang a cover of Tom Petty’s “Room at the Top” as part of the In Memoriam tribute. Petty’s original take of the track collected 5,000 on-demand audio streams on Sunday, up 124 percent compared to its 2,000 streams a day earlier.