Gladys Knight & Patti LaBelle earn their best career streaming numbers thanks to Verzuz
The living legends developed some new fans after their friendly Verzuz 'competition'
Thanks to what some are saying was the most iconic Verzuz battle to-date, Gladys Knight and Patti LaBelle are now experiencing the best streaming numbers of their entire careers.
After the musical legends came together on Sept.13 for an evening of love and friendly competition, their trip down memory lane reminded several of their fans – spanning across generations – to remember just how good and extensive their musical catalogs are.
As a result, they’ve more than doubled their U.S. streaming totals in the days following the live stream, and thanks to what is now being dubbed “the Verzuz effect” each entertainer has also officially had the biggest streaming week of her career.
According to Billboard, “the pair combined for 4.1 million on-demand streams in the U.S. from Sept 13 – Sept. 16, according to preliminary figures from Nielsen Music/MRC Data, a period that covers the battle day and three subsequent days of residual activity. That sum compares to the 1.8 million that the duo together registered in the four days leading to the contest, Sept. 9 – Sept. 12, a gain of 119%.”
“Of the 4.1 million streams for Sept. 13 – 16, Knight’s catalog contributed 1.9 million to the tally… ensuring Knight the best streaming week of her career, topping the 2 million earned in the week ending Aug. 8, 2019,” continues the report. ” LaBelle, meanwhile, scored 2.2 million streams in the Sept. 13 -16 window, the most for her since December of 2019.
LaBelle’s 1984 hit “If You Only Knew” earned 344,000 audio streams, then her duet with Michael McDonald “On My Own” which earned 237,000 streams, “Love, Need and Want You,” 187,000, “Somebody Loves You Baby (You Know Who It Is)” 168,000 and “Lady Marmalade” recorded with her group LaBelle, was at 126,000.
Knight’s classic “Midnight Train to Georgia” garnered 505,000 plays from Sept. 13 -16, while her other big hits “Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye),” drew 215,000 play, “Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me” 154,000, “If I Were Your Woman,” 111,000 and “Love Overboard,” 87,000 plays respectively.
Thanks to a surprise appearance by fellow legend Dionne Warwick during the contest’s finale, “That’s What Friends Are For” and the trio’s 1991 collaboration, “Superwoman,” first recorded by Karyn White, also saw noticeable spikes in streaming numbers after the were performed as well.
LaBelle shared a funny story about kicking her shoes off during the battle, something she’s made a trademark out of during her live shows.
“So, honey, when I’m standing up and doing ‘Over the Rainbow,’ I kick my shoes off, but I have a long way for that shoe to fly. Honey, that shoe kicked off and landed on my knee. I have scars on my right knee,” LaBelle told British singer Estelle on her Apple Music HIts radio show. “That heel went in my knee. I said, ‘Oh Jesus!’ I said, ‘So will I be able to finish dancing because this knee is hurting me so bad?’ But that was a moment that I love because it was real. It was real.”