In honor of Black Music Month, Spotify is celebrating Black artists, creatives and activists of today and yesterday with a series of new playlists, guest-curated playlist takeovers, podcast playlists and more. With 286M users globally, Spotify will use the power of its platform to amplify the brilliant voices and contributions of the Black community, which have continuously defined generations and influenced society. Spotify is elevating this content to celebrate the individuals who gifted us with their talents and to encourage people everywhere to listen and learn from them.
Below are Spotify’s Black Music Month initiatives:
- Juneteenth Celebrations: To commemorate and celebrate, Spotify has made Junetheenth a permanent company holiday for all U.S. employees to give the day the recognition it deserves. To underscore the importance of Juneteenth, Spotify’s flagship playlist, “New Music Friday” will exclusively feature black artists this Friday, June 19th throughout June 26th. Additionally, Spotify’s New Music Friday billboards in Time Square will be dedicated only to black artists that day.
- Curated Playlists: Multiple playlists, many of which will be featured in the Black History Is Now hub, will roll out through the month:
- Father’s Day: Spotify launched its KING playlist celebrating Black men and their roles as fathers. Kirk Franklin will be taking over the playlist and is featured on the cover.
- Throwback Thursday: Each week this month, Spotify is highlighting Black music across genres throughout the decades from the 1950s to now.
- Black to the Future: The new and improved playlist will feature and support up and coming Black artists including Sho Madjozi and Nasty C who, in honor of Youth Day in South Africa, will take over the playlist this month.
- Black History Salute: Spotify is honoring the lives of black music legends lost this year including Bill Withers and Little Richard, who will be featured on the playlist cover, Tony Allen, Manu Dibango, and Betty Wright by commemorating their impact and others who have passed with a curated playlist.
- Black, Queer, & Proud: In celebration of Pride, Brittany Howard, American singer and songwriter, is this month’s playlist cover.
- Playlist Takeovers: Black Music Month will include influential playlist takeovers featuring a deep well of notable Black curators, celebrities, creatives and more:
- Tracee Ellis Ross kicked off the month curating Black Girl Magic with Gabrielle Union-Wade taking over to round out the month.
As music and listening has always reflected the culture and a sign of the times, over the past two weeks, Spotify’s Black Lives Matter playlist has seen a more than 1,900% increase in followers, and a more than 130K% increase in streams. Spotify has also seen several songs spike in the past two weeks, including these five:
- “This is America” – Childish Gambino has seen about a 350% increase in streams
- “Alright” – Kendrick Lemar, with about an 8,250% increase in streams
- “Freedom” – Beyoncé (featuring Kendrick Lemar) has seen a more than 370% increase in streams
- “Self” – Noname has seen a more than 290% increase in streams
- “Mad” – Solange (featuring Lil Wayne) has seen about an 850% increase in streams
Learn more about Black Music Month and how Spotify is celebrating on the For The Record blog post and check out Black History Is Now, Spotify’s platform that celebrates and amplifies the voices of Black artists, creators, and organizations year-round, for all the new content and more. Thank you in advance for considering these plans in your upcoming Black Music Month and general diversity-focused coverage.