Empowering Voices: The African female musicians dominating the charts with Spotify

In recent years, the African music scene has witnessed a remarkable surge in talent, with female artists taking centre stage and making waves across the globe. The pool of musical talent is overflowing, from Nigeria to South Africa and Kenya.

We cannot deny the persistence of African female artists dominating the music industry. I mean, just look at South Africa’s superstar, Tyla, who is currently a Grammy award-winning artist for performing the hit song “Water.” The girls are taking over the industry. Still, we must not overlook the efforts of Spotify’s EQUAL and RADAR Africa’s programs to put women at the forefront of the industry in the past year.

Spotify’s EQUAL program

I Don't Like You Lyrics by Bloody Civilian | Notjustok

In every industry, women continue to be vastly underrepresented. Whether it is music, film, or any male-dominated industry, the need to see more women on our screens and hear them increases exponentially. Now more than ever, more women need to be put in the limelight to empower women and show that success is achievable, especially for women.

EQUAL by Spotify clearly represents the streaming platform’s commitment to amplifying and spotlighting female voices worldwide. From Japan to the USA and Vietnam to Poland, Spotify consistently promotes female artists worldwide through its initiative, EQUAL, which showcases and empowers women.

Through EQUAL, African artists like Tyla, Ayra Starr, Tiwa Savage, Xeniah Manasseh, Bloody Civilian, Makhadzi, and Nikita Kering’ have had an amazing run in the music space. With over 123 million playlists featuring African women and European countries being among the top 5 listeners of African music, EQUAL is giving African female voices space to grow.

RADAR Africa

Makhadzi: albums, songs, playlists | Listen on Deezer

With RADAR Africa, we have seen exponential growth in the artists who are part of RADAR Africa’s program. Ayra Starr, Xeniah Manasseh, Tyla, Bloody Civilian, Makhadzi, and Nikita Kering have all obtained heights that have been significantly difficult to reach in a short time but most especially difficult for female African artists.

Music stars like Tiwa Savage, in her long-standing music career, have set the pace for African women’s success and shown us what success looks like for African women. We can see this manifest in the careers of Ayra Starr, Bloody Civillian, and Tyla, who were all nominees at the 63rd Grammy Awards. According to Spotify’s data on select artists through RADAR Africa, here are the most streamed songs of Spotify’s RADAR and EQUAL African artists.



Plays on Spotify

Ayra Starr



Bloody Civilian

BLOOD ON THE DANCE FLOOR (feat. Bloody Civilian and Wale)





Tiwa Savage



Xeniah Manasseh

When it’s over


Nikita Kering

Last Name


Spotify is spotlighting African women

Spotify’s dedication to supporting female creators is evident in its RADAR & EQUAL program, highlighting emerging talent from underrepresented communities. By providing these artists with a platform to showcase their music, Spotify is amplifying their voices and fostering a more inclusive music industry.

In addition to streaming success, female artists on Spotify also benefit from increased playlist placements, further solidifying their presence in the music industry. Tracks like Tyla’s “Water” and Makhadzi’s “Ghanama” are among the most playlisted songs by RADAR & EQUAL artists, showcasing the diversity and talent of women in African music.

It is undeniable how far these women have come in the industry. Through hard work and exemplary determination to succeed, we can now see that women can do whatever they want. However, women are like plants who need to be supported and watered while they act on their desires.

As we celebrate the rise of female creators in African music, it’s essential to recognize platforms like Spotify’s role in nurturing and elevating their careers. With initiatives like RADAR & EQUAL, Spotify is giving these artists a platform to shine and helping to shape the future of music by amplifying diverse voices and stories from across the continent. As these women continue to break barriers and inspire audiences around the world, one thing is clear: the future of African music is female, and Spotify is helping to lead the way.



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