Rema and Selena Gomez Make History as “Calm Down” Hits 1 Billion Spotify Streams:
Rema, the Nigerian singer-songwriter, and American pop superstar Selena Gomez have made history as their collaborative track “Calm Down” became the first African song to surpass 1 billion streams on Spotify. This monumental achievement cements “Calm Down” as a seminal Afrobeats crossover hit and demonstrates the global appeal of African music.
The Significance of 1 Billion Streams
Hitting 1 billion streams on Spotify is an incredible milestone for any artist. Only the most popular tracks by the biggest names in music gain entry to Spotify’s billion-stream club. For an African artist like Rema to reach this landmark demonstrates that Afrobeats has truly gone worldwide. It shows that African music can compete at the highest levels internationally.
The scale of 1 billion streams is almost unfathomable. If every single person in New York City streamed “Calm Down” once, it would need to happen over 100 times to reach 1 billion. This statistic illustrates just how massively popular this pan-African pop song became across the globe.
The Magic of Rema and Selena’s Collaboration
When Rema and Selena Gomez joined forces on the “Calm Down” remix in 2022, it was clear their collaboration contained magical chemistry. Combining Rema’s talents as a breakout Afropop star with Selena’s pop pedigree as a former Disney star turned hitmaker was a genius move. Selena’s star power introduced Rema to her massive global fanbase, while Rema brought an irresistible African flavor to her audience.
Their catchy lyrics, blended musical styles, and melodic vocals proved to be a perfect match. The original version of “Calm Down” was already a hit across Africa. But the remix with Selena catapulted its popularity to astronomical heights. The song blew up on TikTok, radio, and streaming, turning into a runaway global success story.
— chart data (@chartdata) September 9, 2023
Breaking Down Afrobeats’ Barriers
“Calm Down” smashing the billion-stream barrier has great significance for the Afrobeats genre as a whole. It demonstrates that music from Africa can compete commercially with the biggest mainstream hits from America and around the world.
The Nigerian Afrobeats sound first started gaining worldwide attention in the 2010s. But no African artist had ever cracked the billion-stream club until now. Thanks to its catchy vibe and Selena’s star power, “Calm Down” was the breakthrough smash that finally shattered the glass ceiling.
Its chart-topping success paves the way for more Afrobeats hits to follow. The listenership for African music is clearly out there waiting to be tapped into, as evidenced by the song’s mammoth streaming numbers. This opens doors for more Western collaborations and crossovers between African and global superstar artists.
Afrobeats’ Rising Reach
The mind-blowing success of “Calm Down” demonstrates that the influence of Afrobeats continues to spread far beyond Africa. The infusion of Afrobeats elements into mainstream Western pop music has been one of the biggest recent trends in the industry. From Beyonce to Drake, pop stars around the world are increasingly incorporating Afrobeats into their sound.
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But now an actual Afrobeats tune has taken over the world. The song’s feel-good vibe and danceable rhythms clearly resonated universally. Music fans from Los Angeles to London, Seoul to Sydney, Jakarta to Johannesburg all helped propel “Calm Down” to the billion-stream mountaintop.
This shows that the genre’s growing worldwide fanbase has reached critical mass. Afrobeats is no longer just a niche – it has developed into a truly global movement.
Conquering New Frontiers
Rema and Selena conquering uncharted territory for African music sets an exciting precedent. It demonstrates that Africa’s music industry can succeed internationally without sacrificing its cultural identity. Collaborations with Western artists are helping introduce African music to broader audiences. But the core Afrobeats sound remains as vibrant as ever, now with a billion listeners worldwide tuning in.
The momentum behind Afrobeats will only continue to accelerate as more fans get turned on by the music’s joyful energy. Rema and Selena have opened the floodgates for more African artists to reach #1 on the global charts. As streaming democratizes access to music worldwide, expect the Afrobeats revolution to continue conquering new frontiers.
Rema & Selena Gomez’s “Calm Down” sets the record as the first African song to hit 1 billion streams on Spotify. pic.twitter.com/KXmd0gD5rM
— 49th. (@the49thstreet) September 9, 2023
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