Spotify just launched in 13 Arab countries, and the company believes the move is a game-changer for the way Arabs listen to music.
This is the first time Palestinians are able to stream using Spotify, thanks to their access to 3G for the first time, after being blocked from the service by Israel for over a decade.
The first of its kind, the Arab hub has various subsections based on region, mood and genre, including Arab reggae, trap, funk/disco, hip-hop, love songs and classics.
“As an artist who lived in the Middle East for 30 years, toured the world as a musician and now lives in the U.S., I’ve experienced the differences and similarities between Arabs around the world—and how close they are, even if they’re from different places.” – Suhel Nafar, Spotify’s Senior Arab Music & Culture Editor
Including musicians such as French Montana, Belly, Mona Haydar and more, the playlists feature Arab musicians not only in the Middle East and North Africa, but worldwide.
Spotify playlists have recently become an important platform to uplift smaller and lesser-known artists, including Arab musicians who have difficulty getting signed by larger records.
Since recently being added to Spotify’s Daydreamer playlist, Palestinian group Le Trio Joubran has gone from 15,000 to over 200,000 subscribers.
Spotify’s new Arab hub and launch in Arab countries will increase exposure to artists amongst the diaspora and music lovers globally, democratizing the way in which music is shared and consumed across borders.