Amapiano and Afrobeats videos saw nearly 4 billion global views on Vevo in 2023

South African pop star Tyla was a Vevo DSCVR artist in 2023. At over 5.6 million views, her DSCVR performance of the track was the highest-viewed piece of content for the franchise last year
MBW’s Stat Of The Week is a series in which we highlight a data point that deserves the attention of the global music industry. Stat Of the Week is supported by music data analytics firm Chartmetric.

Music from Africa continued to have a significant global impact in 2023.

According to IFPI‘s most recent Global Music Report, Sub-Saharan Africa was the fastest-growing recorded music region globally for the second consecutive year in 2023.

It was also the only region globally to surpass 20% growth, with revenues up 24.7% YoY, primarily driven by paid streaming revenues, which grew 24.5% YoY.

South Africa, the largest market in the region, and the home of the global Amapiano phenomenon, contributed 77% of regional revenues after seeing its domestic recorded music market grow 19.9% YoY.

The continued rise of African music was also evidenced last year by key milestones from some of the continent’s biggest global stars.

Nigerian superstar Rema for example, joined the ‘Billions Club’ on Spotify with his hit Calm Down Remix (Mavin / Jonzing World/ Virgin Music) featuring Selena Gomez (Interscope).

The achievement marked the first time an African artist–led track had racked up a billion streams on the service. Calm Down Remix has been streamed over 1.3 billion times to date on Spotify.

Meanwhile, Water, the viral TikTok hit by Grammy-winning South African star Tyla debuted at No.67 on the Billboard Hot 100 in October, and eventually rose to its peak of No.7 in January.

As the BBC reported last year, it was the first time in 55 years that a song by a solo artist from South Africa had debuted on the Hot 100. The last solo artist from SA to achieve that was the late jazz legend Hugh Masekela with Grazing in the Grass.

The global interest in Afrobeats and Ampiano can also be seen in rising engagement with music videos from the genres’ biggest stars.

Music video network Vevo, for example, recorded a 56% year-on-year increase in viewership of Afrobeats and Amapiano videos globally in 2023, with 61% of Afrobeats & Amapiano views in 2023 generated outside of Africa.

“The sheer impact we’ve seen across the European and US music scene is unprecedented.”

Jodeci Rampasard, Vevo

Vevo reports that the number of Afrobeats and Amapiano music videos on its network has increased by 61% since 2022 while its entire catalog of music videos for these genres saw nearly 4 Billion global views last year alone.

Artists like Rema, Kizz Daniel, and Davido are driving this growth, with Rema’s Calm Down with Selena Gomez amassing 564 million views in 2023.

Vevo also points to cross-genre collaborations with Afrobeats and Amapiano artists as a key growth trend, with tracks like Chris Brown’s Sensational featuring Davido and Lojay reaching 38 million global views last year.

Jodeci Rampasard, Vevo’s Senior Manager, Music & Talent, UK, notes that these collaborations “are helping attract new audiences globally, whether it’s two global superstars like Rema and Selena [Gomez] or Fireboy DML collaborating with Ed Sheeran”.

Adds Rampasard: “We’ve seen more and more artists that are thinking beyond being cookie-cutter, single-genre musicians and are instead choosing to expand both their fanbases and musical repertoire by exploring new musical styles – and sometimes even languages that are new to them.

“Artists working outside of their normal sound exposes them to countless new eyes and ears that may not have been exposed to their art beforehand, and allows the cross-pollination of global audiences.”

Elsewhere on the Vevo network, Rampasard says that “the most impactful track that comes to mind” for her is Tyla’s Water.

Tyla was named as a Vevo DSCVR artist in 2023, and according to Rampasard, at over 5.6 million views, her DSCVR performance of the track was the highest-viewed piece of content for Vevo’s DSCVR franchise last year. (The track’s official video on YouTube has been viewed over 157 million times).

Vevo has also filmed original content with artists like Libianca, Asake, Ayra Starr, and Davido.

Rampasard also tells us that 21% of Vevo’s Afrobeats and Amapiano views came from Europe in 2023 while 24% from the Americas.

“The sheer impact we’ve seen across the European and US music scene is unprecedented,” adds Rampasard.

“In the last five years, we’ve seen a 223% growth in Afrobeats and Amapiano views in the US and a 113% increase in the UK. This rise can be supported by the success of events like Dankie Sounds and Girls Love Amapiano dominating the UK club scene.”

Commenting on her predictions for Afrobeats and Amapiano artists’ positioning in the global music industry and mainstream cultural sphere over the next couple of years, Rampasard says that both genres are “paving [their] own way and breaking new artists consistently”.

“But as a global industry and mainstream culture, there’s still room to grow,” adds Vevo’s Rampasard.

“[This year] marked the year of the first ever Best African Music performance award at the Grammys. It’s a great step forward to see strides like this and spotlight performances from incredible artists like Burna Boy.

“Or Rema who recently performed at the Brit awards. I look forward to seeing the industry’s developed approach as Afrobeats and Amapiano continue to break new heights.”

Chartmetric is the all-in-one platform for artists and music industry professionals, providing comprehensive streaming, social, and audience data for everyone to create successful careers in music.Music Business Worldwide

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