You would think that the state that has been home to the National Music Museum for nearly 50 years would fare quite well in a ranking of the best states for music in America.

That's not the case for South Dakota.

A recent study done by Mecart, a modular studio manufacturer, examined Google Trends to analyze specific music-related search terms. Mecart then ranked each state, based on the number of searches, with a 'musicality score'.

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According to the study's authors, South Dakota's third from the bottom ranking was hampered by a low number of searches for 'recording studios' and 'music studios'.

The study did note the state's moderately high search levels for 'guitar lessons' and singled out the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra in Sioux Falls and the National Music Museum as highlights in the state's music scene.


  1. Wyoming
  2. Iowa
  3. South Dakota
  4. North Dakota
  5. Wisconsin

Not surprisingly, Tennessee was the top pick for best music state. Nashville is the hub of country music while Memphis is synonymous with the blues.

Utah and Colorado were unexpected entries in the top five, beating out states with rich music histories like California, New York, Michigan, Louisiana, and Texas.


  1. Tennessee
  2. Utah
  3. Georgia
  4. Washington
  5. Colorado

According to Wikipedia, the National Music Museum, which is housed in the former library building on the University of South Dakota campus in Vermillion, was founded in 1973 around the private musical-instrument collection, numbering approximately 2500 instruments, of Arne B. Larson.

Larson's son, Dr. André P. Larson, was the founding director of the museum until his retirement in 2011.

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