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Afrobeats Soar As Genre Tops 2023 Spotify Music Charts

Ruger’s catchy tune ‘Asiwaju’ takes the lead as the most-played song in sub-Saharan Africa this year.
December 20, 2023
10:49 pm

Afrobeats, a favorite sound in the region, dominates Spotify’s list of most streamed in sub-Saharan Africa in 2023, with eight Nigerian songs in the Top 10. Ruger’s ‘Asiwaju’ stands out as the favorite, while Ayra Starr’s ‘Rush’ grabs the second spot, earning her a Grammy nomination.


Asake’s ‘Lonely At The Top’ lands at number four, and Omah Lay’s ‘Soso’ secures the fifth spot. Remarkably, Davido has two hits on the list, with ‘Feel’ and ‘Unavailable’ clinching the sixth and seventh spots respectively, which showcase the musical prowess of the OBO phenomenon.


The charts reflect the vibrant music scene shaping sub-Saharan Africa.


#1. Ruger: Asiwaju


Asiwaju” is a feel-good song that basically highlights Ruger’s confidence in himself, and its lyrics celebrate his personal success. The song is a fusion of hip-hop and afrobeats, which makes it perfect for any listener.


#2. Ayra Starr: Rush



The Celestial Being celebrates her wins and accomplishments in this upbeat melody while highlighting her superiority over “bad energy”. The song’s chorus – “e dey rush” – emphasizes her blessings and victories as an overflowing tap.


#3. Tyler ICU: Mnike (feat. DJMaphorisa, Nandipha808, Cecka RSA & Tyron Dee)



Mnike”, which means “Give me” in Zulu, is an energetic release by Tyler ICU, a South African producer. The song has had its TikTok moments with a special dance step that is associated with it. The tempo of “Mnike” is typical of Amapiano’s.


#4. Asake: Lonely At The Top


Lonely at the Top

Lonely at the Top” gives listeners an insight into Asake’s life, his love for what he does and how far he has come in his musical career. The chorus “Lonely at the top. Money on my mind….” explains the subtle loneliness that can come with success.


#5. Omah Lay: Soso



Some netizens refer to Omah Lay as the originator of “afro depression,” and he has been likened to Billie Eilish because both sing gloomy songs. Omah Lay keys into that narrative again with “Soso”. From the lyrics, one can infer that he is in pain and anguish and wants “Soso” to take his pains away.


#6. Davido: Feel



Feel” is a fusion of afrobeats and Amapiano and is just perfect for lovers of both genres. Davido’s vocals and the song’s beat also heighten its elements. Lyrically, the song highlights Davido’s need to make things right with his loved ones when he says, “Dem go feel it”.


#7. Davido: Unavailable ft. MusaKeys



Unavailable” is the fifth track on Davido’s “Timeless” album that is raving hot for listeners. With the song’s unique dance step, it enables listeners to hop on the dance trend. The streets of Instagram and TikTok have been filled with trends that “Unavailable” has inspired.


The song basically suggests that Davido is not accessible when money is not involved.


#8. Libianca: People



Libianca march to the Top 10 demonstrates the power of social media as a catalyst with the capability to galvanize a person’s career to a topmost height. Earlier released in December 2022, “People” made its rounds on TikTok and suddenly blew up this year. This development is akin to the song’s subject matter.


With the intro – “I’ve been drinking more alcohol for the past five days. Did you check on me?” –  Libianca highlights the lonesomeness ingrained in depression while the song admonishes people that they are not different from the person next door that smiles in public but weeps in private.


#9. Burna Boy: Last Last


Last Last

The African Giant on this one. “Last Last” is a creative outpouring for the African Giant, Burna Boy after a series of breakups with his ex-girlfriend, Stefflon Don. In this song, the artiste enunciates that celebrities do have heartaches because of unstable romantic relationships.


The song is relatable, and the chorus has become very popular since folks commonly use it in conversations in Nigeria: “E don cast. Last last. “Na everybody go chop breakfast”.


#10. BNXN: GWAGWALADA ft Kizz Daniel, Seyi Vibez



BNXN’s collaboration with Kizz Daniel and Seyi Vibez sets this song apart. The track opens with Kizz Daniel’s interestingly calm rendition and BNXN follows this with his unique note scintillatingly.


In this song, the artistes melodiously recount their travels from Abuja to Gwagwalada and what they face along the way.


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