New Research Study from Skoove Reveals Self-Taught Musicians Dominate USA's Chart

April 24, 2024 7:39 AM EDT | Source: Release Media Inc.

Berlin, Germany--(Newsfile Corp. - April 24, 2024) - New research from Skoove, a top piano learning app, and the research experts at Crafins Studio, reveals that a staggering 87% of the top 100 artists on Spotify in the US are self-taught, challenging traditional paradigms of music education. The research report, completed and made available in April of this year, identified trends in the growing accessibility of music creation and the democratization of the music industry. The study found that only 4% of the Spotify top 100 artists had obtained a music degree. An additional 4% started but did not complete a music degree program, revealing that the remaining 92% of artists observed in the study had neither begun nor completed a music degree. These statistics indicated that self-taught musicians are dominating the charts with their innovative sounds and authentic expression, and in the absence of formal musical education.

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Man playing the ukulele while another person arranges photographs on the wall.

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Today, it's possible to learn an instrument, produce music and share that music independently without a traditional musical education. From apps and tutorials on YouTube to help you learn to play an instrument to platforms like TikTok and SoundCloud where artists can share their music. In some ways, the playing field is now more level.

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Pie chart illustrating the educational background of the top 100 Spotify artists in the USA, showing the majority do not have music degrees.

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The success of these artists shows that passion, creativity, and self-determination can break the barriers to entry, irrespective of their access to traditional education. This inspires musicians worldwide to pursue their dreams, regardless of their musical background.

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Pie chart showing that 87% of the top 100 Spotify artists in the USA did not receive tutoring or private lessons, highlighting the prevalence of self-taught musicians in the industry.

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This trend underscores the importance of supporting and encouraging all forms of music education, acknowledging that the path to success is as varied as the artists themselves. Looking ahead, Skoove would love to see an era where the barriers to entry in music are being dismantled, paving the way for a more inclusive, diverse, and vibrant musical landscape.

Florian Plenge, CEO of Skoove, says "You could argue that learning outside of the regimented structure of formal education may allow self-taught individuals to express their creativity more freely as their learning and engagement with their instrument is unconstrained. Without traditional frameworks and support, they have to be resourceful in their learning and stand on their own two feet."

About the data

The underlying data for the analyses came from multiple sources, including ChartMasters' list of Top Spotify Artists, Wikidata, and manual research and aggregation. To extract insights about musicians who are in bands and groups, Skoove looked at characteristics of the lead composer or band frontperson.


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About Skoove

Founded in Berlin in 2014, Skoove (Learnfield GmbH) is dedicated to unlocking the magic of music by making learning the piano simple and fun for its users. The interactive app enjoys worldwide popularity with over 2 million users across the globe.


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Telephone: +49 30 710 78847
Address: Karl-Marx-Allee 82 10243 Berlin, Germany

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