Monday, 17 June

How Spotify’s African Heat became part of your life

Entertainment
2020 when Ghana's Kelvynboy was on the African Heat cover for Spotify

For ardent fans and casual listeners of Afrobeats, both at home and in the diaspora, Spotify’s African Heat is both an important resource for music discovery and a growing catalogue of the genre’s global success. 

Spotify first introduced African Heat in 2017 and the playlist has grown to become the premier hub for Afrobeats on the global streaming platform.

For fans of the genre or eager ears looking for new sounds, staying in touch with African Heat provides a fresh source of what’s hot on the continent and a roll call of its leading voices, from Ayra Starr to Sha Sha.

Holding a spot on the playlist has also become a precursor for global success - songs featured on African Heat upon release, such as Rema’s Calm Down, have gone on to become some of the most streamed Afrobeats records on the platform. 

“As Spotify’s flagship playlist for African music, African Heat curates the continent’s incredible content and culture for a global audience. It has become the nucleus of a global community of Afrobeats fans and we’re excited to see its reach grow and take Afrobeats to more global ears,” says Phiona Okumu, Spotify’s Head of Music for Africa.

The playlist’s growth has been facilitated by a large audience outside of Afrobeats’ home region in West Africa. According to Spotify data, The US, United Kingdom, France, Netherlands and Canada feature in the top 10 markets where African Heat is streamed; Nigeria and Kenya are the playlist’s leading African markets, with South Africa and Ghana also making an appearance in the top ten markets streaming the playlist.

Across all markets, African Heat appeals to fans of all ages, a trend that is in keeping with the widespread appeal of Afrobeats. However, it should be no surprise that Gen Z leads the charge.

Listeners aged 18-24 provide more than a quarter of African Heat’s streams, more than any other age group. Following closely are 25-29 year olds, then 30-34 year olds. The digital-first generations are an army of eager proponents that have propelled Afrobeats to success via viral moments and ardent fandom on social media. 

Whether you are 19 or 90 however, if you listen to Afrobeats on Spotify, chances are African Heat has found its way into a sweet spot in your routine.

Spotify Data shows that, while African Heat has listeners during every hour of the day, most fans listen to the playlist between the hours of 4-6pm - that time of the day when the curtain falls on daily obligations. Listenership peaks at exactly 5pm each day when the playlist has the most streams.

And if you’re wondering just how much of your day is spent in this hub of African music, data from Spotify shows that the average listener streams African Heat for 25 minutes.

With over a million followers around the world and an endless chest of African content to draw from, these touchpoints have all contributed to the platform crossing the 500 million stream mark in 2023.

 

About Spotify

Spotify transformed music listening forever when we launched in 2008. Our mission is to unlock the potential of human creativity by giving a million creative artists the opportunity to live off their art and billions of fans the opportunity to enjoy and be inspired by these creators.

Everything we do is driven by our love for music and podcasts. Discover, manage, and share over 100 million tracks, including more than 5 million podcast titles, for free, or upgrade to Spotify Premium to access exclusive features for music including improved sound quality and an on-demand, offline, and ad-free music listening experience.

Today, we are the world’s most popular audio streaming subscription service with a community of 515 million users, including 210 million Spotify Premium subscribers, in over 180 markets.

Source: classfmonline.com