The Apple Music numbers eclipse those of "VIEWS" by 50 million.
VIEWS established Drake as a streaming monster, but somehow, the Toronto rapper can't help but best himself. With More Life, Drake has earned 300 million Apple Music streams in its first week, besting VIEWS' 250 million, according to The Verge's report from Republic. Early calculations also point to the "playlist" earning an estimated total of 600 million streams worldwide in its first week, which would be a first for any artist's project.
As strong as the Apple Music numbers are, Drake will not break the record for most streams from an album on a single service, which is held by Ed Sheeran's Divide (375 million on Spotify).
Larry Jackson, Apple's head of content, gives much of Drake and Apple's mutual success to Beats 1 Radio. "If you rewind back to July of 2015, and those records that rolled out like ‘Back to Back,’ — ‘Hotline Bling’ debuted on OVO Sound Radio first, ‘Charged Up’ debuted there first — all these records debuted in a space that was really still new and nascent, and [Drake] made it his own. You can glance over it, but we created this idea that was really great for him, and he took advantage of it," he said. "Drake and Oliver and [Drake’s other co-manager] Future [The Prince] were the first to do this with us."
Drake's More Life was premiered on OVO Sound Radio ahead of its release onSaturday March 18th. It was the highest number of simultaneous listeners Beats 1 has seen to date. "What we saw on Drake’s radio show were TV numbers," said Jimmy Iovine.
While continuing to set streaming records, Drake has not lost sight of more traditional means of selling music. More Life is expected to be released on CD next week.