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Journal of the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association

Volume 11, Number 1 (2011)

Just How Long Is Your “Fifteen Minutes?” An Empirical Analysis of Artists’ Time on the Popular Charts

Storm Gloor
University of Colorado Denver


How long does the average artist’s career in the spotlight last? How long is artistic longevity? How rampant are one-hit wonders? Finally, how would one quantify and qualify this information? Although certainly limiting, the 1955-2010 Billboard Top 200 and Hot 100 charts are rich sources of data that, through careful analysis, hold at least partial answers to the above questions. For example, whereas almost 50% of charting singles will in fact end as a one-hit wonder, 25% of artists that chart an album do so with five or more albums throughout their careers. With an average lifespan in the Billboard charts of approximately five years, then, artists are heeded to take full advantage of their careers as soon as the spotlight shines on them.

Keywords: artist development, fame, hit record, music charts, music sales, music tracking, Billboard, music industry, music business

Gloor, Storm. “Just How Long Is Your “Fifteen Minutes?” An Empirical Analysis of Artists’ Time on the Popular Charts.” Journal of the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association 11, no. 1 (2011): 61-82. https://doi.org/10.25101/11.3

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