According to a report from The Chicago Tribune, the press surrounding R. Kelly’s federal charges has actually led to an increase in album sales and streams. Following the release of Surviving R. Kelly on Lifetime, as well as the accompanying social media waves and media reports, R. Kelly’s streams went way up at the beginning of the year.
Thus far since the controversy began, R. Kelly’s streams have increased by approximately 13% in comparison to last year. The recent data seems to reinforce the old idea that there is no such thing as bad publicity.
This past Thursday, the embattled R & B singer was arrested by authorities in Chicago and his name has been a point of interest on social media since then. Listeners, as well, have been streaming his music on the relevant platforms as a result.
As it was previously reported, the star was arrested on Thursday in Chicago and was charged for 13 federal counts, including obstruction of justice, kidnapping, and child pornography. Now that the federal government is involved in the case, and R. Kelly’s situation has just become far more severe.
After Lifetime began airing Surviving R. Kelly on the 3rd of January, lasting until the 5th of January, The Chicago Tribune reports that the singer’s streams suddenly spiked by approximately 116%.
Furthermore, his total streams increased to 4.3 million on the 5th of January which was almost double the near-2-million amount from the 2nd of January. At the moment, Kelly has around 5 million followers on Spotify, and some of his biggest songs are “I’m a Flirt,” as well as “Ignition.”
Furthermore, Nielsen Music claims this phenomenon affects other artists as well, including Michael Jackson. After the airing of Leaving Neverland, Jackson’s streams increased by approximately 41%.
Additionally, Chris Brown recently released a new album, Indigo, which went to the number one spot on the Billboard Top 200 this past week. Brown was famously involved in a domestic abuse scandal involving fellow singer and entertainer, Rihanna, in 2009, and he was also involved in rape allegations earlier this year as well.