The result of Afrobeats crossing its West African borders has not only impacted music, but it has also been a vehicle for food, dance and language export. This cultural exportation currently taking place thanks to Afrobeats’ prevalence in mainstream global media is the focus of this week’s update to Spotify’s Afrobeats: Journey of a Billion Streams site. 

Launched by Spotify last month to chronicle Afrobeats’ growth from West Africa to the global stages, the site has so far journeyed through Afrobeats’ origins in Ghana and Nigeria, the evolution into the current sound and its fusion with other genres. 

Channel 1

International Collaborations

Afrobeats surge in popularity can be linked to several factors including international collaborations, the power of social media, and the rise in music streaming in the African diaspora. According to Spotify-commissioned research conducted by Kuvora, 28% of fans believe that international collaborations is one of the key factors driving the growth of Afrobeats. 

Streaming growth in African countries

West Africa might be the home of Afrobeats but as this update proves, the reach is far beyond its borders, with fans ranging from East to South Africa. Some of the top cities, outside of Lagos, where Afrobeats is getting the most streams are London, Paris, Abuja, Nairobi, Amsterdam and Accra. 

Kenya has seen a 196% yearly growth in Afrobeats streams since Spotify launched in the region. In Nairobi, the top streamed Afrobeats songs are: 

Ayra Starr – Rush

Ruger – Asiwaju 

Bayanni – Ta Ta Ta

Asake, Fireboy DML – Bandana

Kizz Daniel, EMPIRE – Cough (Odo)

Speaking about the genre’s growth, Spotify’s Managing Director for Sub-Saharan Africa said, “Afrobeats’ journey has been fascinating to watch, the export story we have seen with the genre has been so encouraging from Mexico to Saudi Arabia – African music is reaching new audiences. We know Afrobeats is going to continue shattering even more ceilings and we are so excited to see how this genre has taken African culture to the world.”

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