Six months ago, in celebration of International Women’s Day, Spotify vowed to turn up the volume on women creators through our EQUAL campaign. Currently, only one in five artists on the charts is a woman, according to the Spotify-funded USC Annenberg study on representation of women in the music industry. This knowledge has helped fuel our commitment to extending our resources and generating more impactful opportunities for women artists. Today marks a milestone of six months in our campaign—something to celebrate and acknowledge as we continue to drive equity for women in audio.
“Being a female artist requires a lot more effort and dedication to get recognition since, unfortunately, social pressures and sexism are still so present in all spheres of society,” Brazilian artist DUDA BEAT, a featured EQUAL creator, told For the Record. “Hence the great importance of this Spotify initiative, which will enable us as women to have equal representation in the music scene. I’m sure EQUAL will be seen as a milestone in the history of the global music industry for bringing more recognition to talented women from all over the world and making their voices heard.”
To amplify the voices of our creators, we debuted the EQUAL hub, a one-stop destination highlighting the work of women-identifying artists and podcasters. The centralized location isn’t just for artists, however. It also allows Spotify users to tap into the power of listening to shift the status quo.
And to further support emerging artists across 35 markets, we unveiled our EQUAL Music Program. Through the program, Spotify introduced to listeners around the world 35 EQUAL local playlists, which span 50+ countries, as well as a “best-of” flagship EQUAL Global playlist. The playlists are housed on platform in the EQUAL hub and spotlight local women artists on the rise in 35 markets. Plus, each month, the hub features a rotating Artist of the Month takeover, alongside a refreshed tracklist. We kicked off the program by highlighting 35 inaugural EQUAL creators, including LUNA, Somi, Meryl, and DUDA BEAT, and we have since featured 175 EQUAL Artists of the Month.
Now, we’re taking a look at the results of the EQUAL campaign so far—and renewing our commitment to amplify and celebrate the voices of women creators around the world.
It’s clear our EQUAL artists and local playlists have already struck a chord with listeners worldwide. In the first month of joining the program, fans added EQUAL artists to more than 600 different playlists 1,500 times. And after six months, EQUAL playlists have surpassed 29 million streams across 177 markets.
Plus, since the campaign launched, For the Record has had the chance to speak with Artists of the Month Jorja Smith, Lido Pimienta, and more on their hopes for the future of the music industry. The program has ultimately helped foster a deeper connection between fans and noteworthy women artists and generate new opportunities for visibility.
“Sometimes people ask me about the best, most breakthrough moment of my career,” reflected LUNA. “I’m just at the beginning of my journey, but one event was really important and spectacular. In April 2021 I became a part of Spotify’s EQUAL campaign as the first Polish artist and ambassador supporting women’s rights in the music industry. And as a result, I’ve been featured on a billboard in Times Square! It was just unbelievable! It made me feel like anything is possible.”
We’re proud to support the voices of women creators worldwide, and we’re excited to raise the volume even higher. The work toward an equitable future has only just begun.
Keep exercising your power to listen, and stream our EQUAL Global playlist now: