Everyone loves Koe Wetzel. Everyone.EXPAND
Everyone loves Koe Wetzel. Everyone.
courtesy the artist

This Is What North Texans Are Listening To

Ever wonder what the sound of a city or even an entire country might be? Thanks to the data wizards at Spotify, you can see that information plotted on an interactive map. Every week, the “Music Map of the World” gets an update with a list of songs played most in any given city or country, at least where there are enough Spotify listeners to gather data from. The playlists consist of the 100 most-played songs unique to an area — unique meaning a song is played more times in one area than in others.

So what is DFW blasting on repeat? Mainly Koe Wetzel. Lots and lots of Koe Wetzel. King Koe, a country rocker from East Texas, has been reigning supreme two weeks straight, with at least two of his songs making it into the top five of every major city in the Metroplex except for Grand Prairie and Fort Worth. His song “February 28, 2016” has been No. 1 in Richardson, Plano and Arlington for the past two weeks. In Dallas he placed fourth, and in Mesquite his song “Something to Talk About” took first instead of “February 28, 2016.” Wetzel draws 67,070 monthly listeners on Spotify.

Why is he on top? It could be part of a larger national movement in country music. According to Nick Murray, a contributing writer at Pitchfork, country music is moving toward a pop punk sound. National country hits like "Rock On" by Tucker Beathard have started incorporating distortion and drum tones that sound like they were taken off of A Day to Remember’s first album, creating a new kind of country rock with a little more edge. Listen once to Wetzel’s “February 28, 2016,” and it’s obvious this trend is hardwired into his music. Crunchy guitar tones driving biting riffs, an uber-fat snare sound and thick, stumpy beats bring the pain with the twang.

Wetzel is not the only country artist to top charts in DFW. As might be expected deep in the heart of Texas, country artists dominate the top five lists in Plano, Richardson, Garland, Mesquite, Fort Worth and Arlington. And although Koe Wetzel took the overall crown hands down, Parker McCollum, Josh Abbott Band, Cody Johnson and Mike Ryan all held their own in at least one part of DFW.

The two outliers are Dallas and Grand Prairie, both of which sport rap-centric top fives. No. 1 in Dallas is 1999's “Crook for Life,” the hometown throwback by Mr. Pookie. Rappers Z-RO and MO3 are the contemporary kings in Dallas, and in Grand Prairie, Z-RO holds the top three spots with his songs “Solid,” “From the Otherside” and “Devil in Me.”

Of all the data sets reported on Spotify’s map in the DFW area, the Dallas and Grand Prairie top fives are the most musically diverse of the bunch. Grand Prairie has two songs by La Zenda Norteña in its top five, and Dallas is a 2-3 split between country and rap.

So what do we know about what North Texas residents listen to where? As you move toward the city center, you’ll hear more rap, hip-hop and Latin music, whereas the outskirts of the city trend heavily toward country music.

This week’s verdict is in. If this sort of analysis piques your interest, and you’d like to keep up with what the rest of the world is listening to, visit the “Music Map of the World” every Monday for updates. Happy listening!

Dallas
"Crook for Life," Mr. Pookie
"Gangsta Love," MO3
"Solid," Z-RO
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Something to Talk About," Koe Wetzel

Fort Worth
"Meet you in the Middle," Parker McCollum
"High Above Water," Parker McCollum
"Dancing All Around It," Mike Ryan
"All Day," Parker McCollum
"Bad Reputation," Mike Ryan

Arlington
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Tell it All Town," Koe Wetzel
"Something to Talk About," Koe Wetzel
"She’s Like Texas," Josh Abbott Band
"Meet you in the Middle," Parker McCollum

Richardson
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Wild as You," Cody Johnson
"Dance Her Home," Cody Johnson
"She’s Like Texas," Josh Abbott Band
"Me and My Kind," Cody Johnson

Plano
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Something to Talk About," Koe Wetzel
"She’s Like Texas," Josh Abbott Band
"My Texas" featuring Pat Green, Josh Abbott Band
"Wild as You," Cody Johnson

Garland
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Something to Talk About," Koe Wetzel
"Wild as You," Cody Johnson
"She’s Like Texas," Josh Abbot Band
"Dance Her Home," Cody Johnson

Mesquite
"Something to Talk About," Koe Wetzel
"February 28, 2016," Koe Wetzel
"Tell it All Town," Koe Wetzel
"Dance Her Home," Cody Johnson
"Diamond in My Pocket," Cody Johnson

Grand Prairie
"Solid," Z-RO
"From the Otherside," Z-RO
"Devil in Me," Z-RO
"Prohibido," La Zenda Norteña
"Los Viejitos," La Zenda Norteña

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