Spotify has curated playlists reflecting the local flavor of each stop on HuffPost’s “Listen to America” tour using location-based data to find out what people are really listening to in 20-plus cities. Check back for more from Sept. 12 through Oct. 30.
The Iowa city that hosts what is likely the state’s (if not the country’s) most wholesome annual event ― the Iowa State Fair ― has also churned out one of the state’s (if not the country’s) angriest bands. Slipknot, once said to have “tapped the sweat-inducing nightmare of every PTA mom” by Rolling Stone, formed in Des Moines in the mid-’90s. One of its members, lead singer Corey Taylor, was tapped from another metal band, Stone Sour, also formed in Des Moines.
But going back to “wholesome,” we have famous Iowan Andy Williams born in the nearby town of Wall Lake, with a population of 800. Country singer-songwriter Sarah Darling also hails from Des Moines, as do folk singers The River Monks and the rock group The Nadas.
More than elsewhere around the U.S., people in Des Moines are huge country fans. A Spotify analysis found a city that loves names like Thomas Rhett, Kane Brown, Scotty McCreery, Jason Aldean, Jillian Jacqueline, Florida Georgia Line and others. Of course, few can escape the allure of Top 40, so you’ll find a few hits by Sam Smith, Kesha, Demi Lovato and more on the playlist below.
Spotify playlists for the “Listen to America” campaign were created by looking at each location’s most popular songs (streaming in the highest numbers at time of publication), distinctive songs (currently being streamed more in this city compared to all other cities in the world) and tracks from local artists. While many picks are data-driven, some songs are handpicked from data lists to assure the playlists reflect a variety of genres and decades, as well as a healthy gender balance.