Pop music consistently requires fresh talent in order to remain relevant and — most importantly — cool. While artists like Madonna and Mariah Carey have led careers that have spanned decades and are filled with chart-topping hits, the pop charts are filled with songs by younger artists with less-established pasts.
Many of the most popular new music stars perform music that overlaps with popular genres such as hip hop/R&B and country. In many cases, these musicians find success in these genres — becoming popular country stars or releasing numerous hit rap songs — prior to crossing over into the wider world of pop music. Of course, in pop, where various genres converge, there is much more competition. There is also opportunity to achieve a greater scale of commercial and financial success.
24/7 Tempo has identified America’s 40 hottest new music stars, based on Billboard performance and internet popularity. We defined new music stars as artists who have only had songs reach their peaks on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart beginning in 2017 or later.
The majority of these performers are exceedingly young, with some, such as singer Billie Eilish and rapper Lil Pump, still in their teens. Despite their ages, they have already attained commercial, and frequently critical, success. Some of the musicians on this list will undoubtedly be tomorrow’s pop icons.
To determine America’s newest music superstars, 24/7 Tempo reviewed artist performance on the Billboard Hot 100 music chart from the week of Jan. 7, 2017, through the week of June 8, 2019. We then created an index using the number of weeks an artist spent on the chart during that period, the positions they held on the chart, and the number of page views each artist’s Wikipedia page received over the past two years, a reflection of each musician’s popularity. To be considered, artists could not have had a single reach its peak position on Hot 100 prior to the week of Jan. 7, 2017.
Songs for which the artist in question was not the primary performer were not included in our ranking. For example, if a rapper had a guest verse on another performer’s song, that song’s performance on the Hot 100 was not considered in our ranking.