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The Most Popular Artist in Every State

February 20, 2018 by Stephen Spiewak


Garth Brooks is the darling of the American live music scene.

The legendary country music singer and songwriter is the most popular artist in 13 states, according to ticket data from 2014 through 2017 that Vivid Seats analyzed.

Brooks’ popularity soars in the South, as he checked in as the most popular artists in South Carolina, Louisiana, Kentucky and Tennessee.

The title is nothing new for Brooks. Entertainment Weekly called him the most popular singer in America. In 1991.

Fellow country singer Luke Bryan enjoys top popularity in the second highest number of states with eight, including Ohio, North Carolina, Arkansas and Indiana.

His popularity seems poised to continue to grow, as he’ll remain in the public eye while serving as a judge on the upcoming reboot of American Idol.

In Texas and Georgia, among other states, it’s Beyoncé who reigns supreme as the most popular artist.

It makes sense that the former Destiny’s Child star and current pop icon, a native of Houston, has a strong following in the Lone Star State, according to editor Cyrus Langhorne.

“It’s no secret Beyonce has some serious global appeal,” Langhorne said, “but her roots are in H-Town.”

Langhorne believes that the Queen Bey’s appeal to women is a key driver in her popularity across the country.

“She means so much to women specifically,” he said. “She made an entire album (“Lemonade”) that became the soundtrack for every single woman.”

Unsurprisingly, Long Island native Billy Joel checks in as the most popular artist in his home state of New York.

Joel continues to enjoy immense popularity, routinely selling out shows at Madison Square Garden.

“Nowhere is the brunt of Joel’s inescapability felt more strongly than in New York, where his music is a codified part of the life cycle,” wrote Adam Chandler of The Atlantic in April.

The only hard rock selection? Metallica, which ranked as most popular in the band’s home state of Minnesota. In 2016, Metallica helped open U.S. Bank Stadium—which played host to Super Bowl LII this year—and appreciated the significance of the moment.

“This place looks amazing from our vantage point,” drummer Lars Ulrich told Chris Riemenschneider of the Star-Tribune on the night of the show. “I got goose bumps looking at those 50,000 purple seats and knowing the history the color purple has in this town.”

The hometown appeal also has Bruno Mars checking in as the most popular artist in Hawaii.

Mars "was well-known locally as “Little Elvis” when he was young," according to Jason Genegabus of the Honolulu Star Advertiser.

Here’s a full breakdown of the top artist in each state, according to Vivid Seats ticket data:Vivid Seats: Most Popular Musical Artist in Every State

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