It was exactly five years ago when Spotify launched in South Africa; now the streaming service traces back to how local audiences have spent time on the platform discovering new music.

According to their data, South Africans have spent more than 24 billion hours on their streaming service, with almost 1 million tracks added by local artists.

The first song streamed on Spotify in South Africa on launch day was the 1998 remastering of Jazz artist Thelonious Monk’s Round Midnight and this sense of nostalgia is a trend that has consistently been seen in South Africa since Spotify’s launch.

The only South African track to feature in those first ten tracks is Shekhinah’s Thirsty, which is fitting as she also performed at the official launch party.

The most streamed track across the nation since its launch has been The Weeknd’s Blinding Lights, followed by The Glass Animals’ Heat Waves and Lewis Capaldi’s ballad Someone You Loved.

All-time 5 most streamed artists in South Africa

Drake is the most streamed artist on Spotify over the past five years, with Amapiano artist Kabza De Small at number two, then follows The Weeknd, and Juice WRLD. DJ Maphorisa rounds out the top five most streamed artists in the country- a further testament to the massive appeal of the Amapiano genre.

The most streamed track by a South African artist in Spotify’s five year history is SETE by K.O, Young Stunna and Blxckie, which ranks at number five. Also featuring in the top ten is Abelele by Kabza De Small, DJ Maphorisa and Ami Faku.

City data since the start of 2022 shows that Drake dominates as the most streamed artist in most cities– although Durbanites buck the trend, where Puff Kennedy is the most streamed artist. AKA, whose posthumous album Mass Country was released earlier this month, and who saw a major increase in streams following his death, is the most streamed local artist in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Bloemfontein, Gqeberha, and Polokwane.

The country is also listening to a mix of local and international podcast content. Data since 2022 shows that the most streamed podcast in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, and Bloemfontein is the Joe Rogan Experience. The top streamed local podcast in many of South Africa’s bigger cities is MacG’s Podcast and Chill while Anything Goes with Emma Chamberlain feature in the top five for Cape Town and Bloemfontein.

Over the past five years, Mzansi has spent more than 1.2 billion hours streaming music on Spotify amounting to +30 billion streams.

The average number of hours South Africans spent listening to podcasts comes in at over 23 billion hours of podcasts since launch.

When it comes to who is listening to podcasts- it’s neck and neck between GenZ’s and Millennials, who make up 29% and 28% of the listenership respectively.