Spotify has been amplifying women creators around the world through meaningful global partnerships and immersive audio experiences. On-platform, listeners can find the EQUAL Hub – a dedicated space highlighting the women creators on its platform. EQUAL aims to bridge the gender equity gap in music by bringing fans a space to engage directly with diverse, talented women artists from over 180 different countries. Since its inception in 2021, Spotify has supported more than 700 EQUAL ambassadors globally.
This year, Billboard and Spotify launched an interview series, Worldwide Women, which told the stories of EQUAL Ambassadors representing countries like Spain, Morocco, Pakistan, and more. The series featured women like Nigeria’s dynamic vocalist SIMI, Italian singer/songwriter ARIETE, and Mexico’s Latin GRAMMY Best New Artist Silvana Estrada.
In June 2022, Billboard spoke with Sara James, the youngest EQUAL ambassador to date. James is a half-Polish and half-Nigerian singer/songwriter, who has garnered over 10 million streams on Spotify. She is known for tracks like “Somebody,” “My Wave,” and “Nie Jest Za Późno.”
Spotify’s annual Wrapped revealed that James is the No. 1 most streamed artist on Spotify’s EQUAL Global Playlist. When asked how she feels about this accomplishment, she said, “That’s crazy. Like, actually crazy. And I’m just so happy and so honored to serve as an example for women and younger people, and show that you can do it and nothing’s going to stop you. You just have to follow your dreams.”
Sara James’ career is off to a great start and shows no signs of slowing down. She recently released a new single, “Lovely Christmas,” and is gearing up for a jam-packed 2023. When asked about plans for 2023, James shared, “Music, music, music, that’s for sure. I want to go on tour for my new album. I also want to show the world the more mature Sara James.”
To recap the year, Spotify updated the EQUAL Global Playlist to the Top Artists of EQUAL Global 2022. This playlist includes the most streamed artists within the EQUAL Global Playlist all year. The top 10 artists featured in the playlist include Sara James (Poland), Shania Twain (Canada), Evangelia (Greece), Avril Lavigne (Canada), Ethel Cain (United States of America), LUDMILLA (Brazil), Blackthoven (Cuba/Spain), Manizha (Russia), and Phùng Khánh Linh (Vietnam).
Spotify will continue its commitment to supporting women through its EQUAL Global music program by amplifying and celebrating the work of women creators around the world. Check out the updated EQUAL playlist below and comment your favorite featured artists on Billboard socials.