The Drake debate is seemingly never-ending. Is he a great rapper? Or is he too mainstream? Is he a top-tier artist? Or is he stylistically too diverse? Now, Billboard has added a new question to the mix: Is he the artist of the decade? And the answer is simply: Yes.
As Billboard’s top artist of the 2010s, Drake is set to receive his Artist of the Decade Award at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards – a title which was previously bestowed on Eminem in the 2000s and Mariah Carey in the 1990s.
Now before, Hip Hop Twitter gets in its feelings over this accolade and whether or not it is deserved: The title "Artist of the Decade" has little to do with opinions and much more to do with data. And the numbers don't lie.
Drake was ranked No. 1 based on performance on the Billboard “Hot 100” and “Billboard 200” charts, as well as through social-media data and touring revenue. Billboard notes Drake has nine No. 1 albums this decade starting with his 2010 debut, Thank Me Later, and most recently for 2019’s Care Package. He's had six Hot 100 No. 1s and has the most Hot 100 top 10s (45, to-date) and overall entries (232).
Drake also sets the bar at the Billboard Music Awards, holding the title of most BBMAs, with 27 wins. Last year, he took home a massive 12 prizes. This year, in addition to receiving the Artist of the Decade Award, he's also up for seven categories, including Top Artist.
Whether you love him or hate him, Drizzy's impact on the decade is indelible. And outside of Billboard's own data, the Toronto rapper still ranks at the very top across the board. Aubrey "More slaps than the Beatles" Graham is currently the most streamed artist globally, racking up over five billion streams on Spotify and Apple Music. If nothing else, Drake's Artist of the Decade Award is well-deserved.
The 2021 Billboard Music Awards will air live on Sunday, May 23, at 8 p.m. ET.