Vevo unveils its most popular music videos of 2021

·3 min read

The Weeknd, Little Mix and Lil Nas X had some of the UK’s most popular music videos of the last 12 months, Vevo said.

Canadian singer The Weeknd was the most-viewed artist of this past year with 94.3 million views, followed by Little Mix with 93.7 million views – who announced their break up last week.

Lil Nas X’s Montero (Call Me By Your Name) secured the top spot in the Vevo Engagement Chart for 2021 – which ranks videos according to the most likes, shares and comments.

Little Mix
The Weeknd, Little Mix and Lil Nas X had some of the UK’s most popular music videos of the last 12 months (John Marshall/PA)

After six years, Adele’s first single Easy On Me from her new album made the number two spot by this measure.

US pop sensation Olivia Rodrigo enjoyed a breakout year with her album Sour, becoming the seventh most-viewed Vevo artist of 2021 in the UK.

The 18-year-old singer-songwriter has grown her music video viewership tenfold to 64.01 million UK views this year, according to Vevo.

Globally, Karol G topped the most-viewed artist chart of 2021 with 3.11 billion views, closely followed by The Weeknd who has had 3.10 billion views.

Alan Price, CEO of Vevo, said: “Vevo is the music video destination for artists of all genres and career stages. Our charts feature both established stars, such as Taylor Swift and Future, and newer names who also made big headlines this year, like Lil Nas X and Olivia Rodrigo.

“In 2021, fan consumption and engagement with music videos continued to yield many insights about the vital nature of the music video in driving, shaping and reacting to cultural moments.”

Old favourites were given a boost by high-profile celebrity romances this year.

Jennifer Lopez saw viewership lifts among heavy news reporting of her rekindling with actor Ben Affleck, who appeared in her Jenny From The Block music video.

In September, viewership of Machine Gun Kelly’s Bloody Valentine, starring actress Megan Fox, doubled after he and Fox hit the VMAs red carpet.

Lil Nas X
Lil Nas X’s Montero (Call Me By Your Name) secured the top spot in the Vevo Engagement Chart for 2021 (IAn West/PA)

The European championship caused a significant uptick in viewership of anthems such as Baddiel, Skinner and The Lightning Seeds’ Three Lions, which drew in 31 times its usual viewership.

At the same time, Scottish DJ George GBX Bowie’s remix of Yes Sir I Can Boogie by Baccara for Scotland’s Euros campaign spiked views of that music video five-fold.

Similarly, fans turned to music videos to remember artists including The Rolling Stones’ drummer Charlie Watts whose death in August led to a 140% spike in viewership.

The increasing popularity of social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram fostered the rediscovery of nostalgic music videos include Boney M’s Rasputin and Earth, Wind And Fire’s Let’s Groove Tonight.

The top TikTok-influenced music video trends of the year include Mitski’s Washing Machine Heart, Trinidad Cardona’s Dinero and J Cole’s She Knows.

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