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Music Listening in Finland 2023: Finns have become chart pop fans, pop schlager has seen a huge rise in popularity over the past 10 years


Finnish-language pop overtook traditional rock and metal/hard rock to become the most liked genre of Finns.

According to Teosto and IFPI Finland’s Music Listening in Finland 2023 survey, Finns have broadened their music taste and become fans of pop music over the past 10 years. More than one thousand 13–75-year-olds, of whom most were aged 13–18, responded to the survey in Norstat’s consumer panel in August 2023.

Over the past 10 years, Finns have broadened their taste in music and become fans of pop music. Traditional rock was still the most popular choice in the 2015 music taste survey, but in 2023 Finnish-language pop music is the most popular genre. The genre that saw the biggest increase in popularity over the past eight years is Finnish schlager music, which has become more modern and more similar to pop. This genre is liked by 20% of Finns (10% in 2015).

“According to our surveys, five to ten years ago Finns were pickier about music styles and genres, at least when it came to the music they liked to listen to at least occasionally,” says the Music Listening in Finland 2023 survey’s lead researcher Kari Tervonen from Omnicom Media Group.

According to the Statista Global Survey (2022), 65% of Finnish adults like listening to chart pop, which also makes them the most active chart pop listener group in the world.  Sweden (65%) and Italy (59%) have the second and third largest shares of chart pop listeners, while the global average is only 39%. According to the Music Listening in Finland 2023 survey, 19% of all Finns and up to 32% of 13–25-year-olds report listening to chart pop more than they used to. Even 14% of metal fans have noticed a change in their music listening habits.

“When we asked Finns about their music listening habits, the responses of younger age groups indicated a major transformation in music listening. The youngest Finns are more likely than the older age groups to discover new music through video games, listen to music by female artists, prefer Finnish music and listen to artists from past decades. The main reason for this is that music plays the biggest role in your life during your teens and early 20s, and your music taste expands the fastest at that age. In part, this is also a matter of young people using the digital user interfaces for music in a more active and wide-ranging way,” Kari Tervonen says.

Among the youngest age groups, the sources for finding new artists and music have also changed drastically compared to older age groups.

For teenagers, Spotify and TikTok are the most important channels for discovering new music, while 36–45-year-olds prefer Spotify and radio and 66–75-year-olds mainly use radio.

According to the survey, there are regional differences in music taste in Finland:

  • Finnish-language chart pop is less popular in Uusimaa (19% vs. 26% for the rest of Finland).
  • Metal and hard rock are less popular in Uusimaa (19% vs. 27% for the rest of Finland).
  • English-language chart pop is more popular in Uusimaa (20% vs. 16% for the rest of Finland).
  • R&B and soul are more popular in Uusimaa (11%, the lowest in Northern and Eastern Finland at 6%).
  • Classical music is more popular in Uusimaa (13% vs. 9% for the rest of Finland).
  • Latin music is not popular in Northern and Eastern Finland (3% vs. 8% for the rest of Finland).

The average hit song has become up to 50 seconds shorter over the past 10 years

Chart pop has changed in the past 10 years, and research shows that hit songs are even shorter than before.  The average length of a song on the American Billboard chart has decreased by up to 50 seconds in the past 10 years. These songs now average three minutes. Half of all Finnish listeners also consider three minutes to be the ideal length for a hit song.

For Finnish listeners, the important ingredients of a hit song include a compelling rhythm, a memorable lyrical hook and a catchy chorus or melody. In addition, good songs also break out of the traditional pattern in some way and surprise the listener.

Half of all Finnish listeners consider three minutes to be ideal length for a hit song.

Cha Cha Cha is by far the best-known Finnish hit song

For the first time, the Music Listening in Finland 2023 survey looked at the recognisability and popularity of 25 Finnish evergreen hit songs among Finns. The list of Finnish-language evergreen hits composed in Finland was compiled on the basis of Teosto’s and IFPI Finland’s statistics on songs that accumulated the most royalties and chart placements.

The recognisability of 25 Finnish evergreen hit songs in different age groups. Click for bigger picture from here.

Across all age groups, the three most well-known songs were Cha Cha Cha by Käärijä (95%), Autiotalo by Dingo (93%) and Lumi teki enkelin eteiseen by Hector (92%). Among 13–18-year-olds, the best-known song was Cha Cha Cha (97%), while Autiotalo (98%) and Lumi teki enkelin eteiseen (98%) were the best-known songs among 36–45-year-olds and Puhelinlangat laulaa by Katri Helena (100%) was the best-known song among 66–75-year-olds.

The most popular and well-liked hit song across all age groups was Lumi teki enkelin eteiseen (53%). Among the younger age groups, the most popular hit song was Cha Cha Cha, while Paratiisi by Rauli Badding Somerjoki was the most popular hit song among older age groups.

The most popular Finnish evergreen hits change as the age groups get older.

Cha Cha Cha was also most often named in the survey as the respondents’ favourite song of summer 2023. Ylivoimainen by Kuumaa got the second highest number of mentions. The third place went to Viimeinen tanssi by Behm and Olavi Uusivirta and Blondina by Ibe.

“The perennial favourites Hector, Juice Leskinen, Eppu Normaali and Dingo were the most popular across all age groups. In any case, Cha Cha Cha is currently the most recognisable Finnish pop song of all time when you look at which songs are recognised across all age groups,” Kari Tervonen says.

Teosto and IFPI Finland’s Music Listening in Finland 2023 survey provided information about changes in Finns’ music listening habits over the longer term for the 10th time. The researcher was Kari Tervonen, Omnicom Media Group’s Roadmap Director, supported by Johanna Laitinen and Susanna Perämaa from Teosto and Tommi Kyyrä from IFPI Finland. The results of the survey were presented at the Music x Media event for professionals in Tampere on 6 October 2023.

Further information

Roadmap Director Kari Tervonen/Omnicom Media Group
tel. +358 (0)50 437 0677

Communications Manager Johanna Laitinen/Teosto
tel. +358 (0)40 192 1900

Customer Experience Manager Susanna Perämaa/Teosto
tel. +358 (0)40 558 8023

Deputy Director Tommi Kyyrä/IFPI Finland
tel. +358 (0)50 566 422

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