As a way of celebrating the power of African voices across the continent and beyond, Spotify is shining a spotlight on one of its flagships, curated playlists African Heat, through an interactive campaign that brings the spirit of Africa alive around the world.
The campaign journeys through a series of partnerships, activations, a dance challenge video (#africanheatchallenge), and more creative content opportunities that will play out through on-and-off-platform initiatives on local, regional, and international levels. Highlighting the diversity of African talent, the playlist is an explosion of Afro-centric sounds, carving out a space for African creators to showcase their music to a global audience.
Centered on the key role that the Afro-dance community has played in spreading African pop music across the globe, the campaign includes the likes of Focalistic, Fuse ODG, Olamide, as well as some of the leading female faces of dance music in Africa - Moonchild Sanelly, Sho Madjozi, Niniola, and Amapiano’s Lady Du.
"Dance culture has helped my music spread outside of the continent. Music and dance go hand in hand," said Olamide.
By including emerging and established artists alongside one another - Amapiano’s newer artists Focalistic and Lady Du together with Azonto dance genre pioneer Fuse ODG and Shaku Shaku street dance driver, Olamide - Spotify is showcasing its dedication to and investment in all artists.
Taking African Heat to The Streets with the #africanheatchallenge
The beautifully shot clip was directed by the talented, award-winning, Johannesburg-based Zandi Tisani, who uses her experience to draw attention to her work in edgy and bold ways. Set to Focalistic’s hit “Ke Star,” the clip encourages fans to immerse themselves in the sounds of the playlist, delving into the language of dance to express the connection between African communities worldwide that share a love of dance music. Watch the clip HERE.
The video features dancers from major cities in Africa and across the globe, including local sensation Kamo Mpela, Nigeria’s Boluwatife, Ghana’s DWP Academy and more as they move through the streets of their cities doing the #africanheatchallenge.
This is not the first collab between Spotify and Focalistic who, as one of Spotify’s RADAR AFRICA artists, has already benefited from the support that the program promises to artists across all stages of their career development. The African Heat campaign is another example of how Spotify continues to showcase and support African talent.
"My music is an honest expression of who I am and where I come from, Pitori! I am the voice of the hood! I am the voice of the YOUTH! I want to take my voice to the world and Spotify is helping me do that. With my recent DaVido collab on the ‘Ke Star (Remix)’ promoting African Heat to a wider audience gives me and other African artists more opportunities to reach millions of Spotify listeners,” said Focalistic. “Music is a universal language and I want the world to understand our lingo, our movement, and our sound! I’m excited to see where we can go! To the top!! Ase Trap tse ke PINA tsa ko Kasi!"
On the playlist today, fans can find Spotify Clips, featuring soundbites and self-shot videos from the artists mentioned, speaking to the impact and influence of African Dance culture. These artists will also appear on large-scale Spotify billboards to promote African Heat in New York City and Toronto.
…Features Focalistic, Fuse ODG, Olamide, Other African stars
Commenting on the campaign, Phiona Okumu, Spotify Head of Music, Sub-Saharan Africa said: “The rich diversity of musical talent in Africa inspires and engages fans around the world. Spotify continues to use the power of its platform to amplify African voices across a global stage, building an ongoing narrative that supports and puts African creators at the forefront.”
Spotify recently expanded its footprint in Africa by launching into new markets including Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Uganda, giving African creators the opportunity to connect with a global audience of fans. With its unrivaled mix of features that have made it the world’s most popular audio streaming subscription service, including more than 70 million international and local songs and over 4 billion playlists, Spotify is excited to introduce its African audience to a best in class product and a localized experience MADE FOR AFRICA!