Songs performed on the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards (Aug. 26) generally saw gains in both digital downloads and streams, including a 74% boost in sales for the tracking week of Aug. 23-29, according to Nielsen Music.
The songs performed on the show — not including newly released tracks (or, in the case of Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts,” remixes), pre-show performances or those impacted by iTunes’ “complete my album” interactions — sold a total of 93,000 downloads for the week in the U.S. Additionally, they earned 99.6 million on-demand streams, a leap of 17%.
In terms of percentage spikes, no track saw a larger gain in sales from the Aug. 26 broadcast than Missy Elliott’s “Pass That Dutch.” The 2003 track, performed during a seven-song medley honoring Elliott with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, moved 1,000 downloads, up 1,185%. It was also streamed 391,000 times, a jump of 124%.
Each of the tracks from Elliott’s medley increased in sales and streams (not including the newly released “Throw It Back”), with the six older songs up at least 492% in digital downloads and at least 66% in streams. “Work It” led the way in terms of overall volume on both fronts, earning 4,000 downloads and 3.5 million streams.
Outside Elliott, other big gains belonged to songs performed during the six-song medley that closed the broadcast highlighting New Jersey natives Queen Latifah, Fetty Wap, Naughty by Nature, Redman and Wyclef Jean. Of note: Latifah’s own “U.N.I.T.Y.” jumped 484% in sales, while Naughty by Nature’s “Hip Hop Hooray” leaped 53% in streams.
Lizzo’s “Good as Hell” stands out among songs not performed during a multi-artist medley; the track, originally released in 2016 and performed alongside Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts,” moved 21,000 downloads (up 215%) and 8.7 million streams (a jump of 27%), spurring its debut on the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 52.