Marking its first anniversary, EQUAL Pakistan has honored the classical maestro, Tina Sani, as the Ambassador for the Month of March 2023. Celebrating a year of honoring both legendary and rising women musicians from the local space, EQUAL Pakistan has set a grand stage for artists and their astounding performances. Tina Sani has become the latest Pakistani idol to feature on a Spotify EQUAL’s digital billboard at Times Square, NYC, with her mesmerizing track ‘Dasht-e-Tanhai’ being featured on Spotify’s EQUAL Pakistan playlist.
On the occasion of EQUAL’s first anniversary, Spotify is also launching a trend featuring the last twelve ambassadors, all of whom are inspirational personalities in their own rights, amplifying their voices further through an innovative digital campaign. The initiative brings together all of the previous women artists showcased by EQUAL Pakistan to emphasize the magnitude of power that the female segment holds once they are given the appropriate platform for it.
Since its launch in Pakistan, the EQUAL platform has transformed the conventional setting for women musicians in the country. According to the data revealed by Spotify on EQUAL Pakistan’s 1 year Anniversary, within the first year of joining the program, EQUAL artists have received more than 2.2 million hours of editorial streams. On average, women artists featured by EQUAL have witnessed a 330% increase in streams over the past year. And, women artists receive about 68% more discoveries from being included on the EQUAL Pakistan playlist.
These numbers showcase the exponentially boosted reach that the music streaming service offers women artists access to through its signature offering. Among the featured EQUAL Pakistan Ambassadors, Natasha Baig was the artist with the highest year-on-year increase in streams. Her listenership frequency increased by a staggering 430% over the year gone by. Natasha Humera Ejaz, who was featured as EQUAL Ambassador in February, 2023, was next on the list with a 274% increase in streams followed by Shae Gill, who saw her streams go up by 242%.
“It gives me immense pleasure to be the Spotify Equal Ambassador for Pakistan,” the legendary singer, Tina Sani, stated on being announced as the face of the program. “Female musicians have been breaking barriers in the Pakistani music scene for decades and it’s about time they get the due recognition. Their investment in the music scene is deeply rooted and I am so happy to see it showcased to the worldwide audiences through this brilliant initiative,” she added.
Tina Sani is a name synonymous with stunning ghazal ‘gayaki’ – the art of singing the ghazal in the Indian classical tradition. Trained in classical music by Ustad Nizamuddin Khan and the “Shahenshah-e-Ghazal” Mehdi Hassan himself, Tina has built such a profound presence that she has received not just the Pride of Performance Award from the Government of Pakistan but also the Performance Recognition Award by the President of neighboring India in 2011.
Rutaba Yaqub, Spotify’s Senior Editor for Pakistan, Sri Lanka & Bangladesh further elaborated on the impact of EQUAL in Pakistan, stating; “Through increasing streams across 86 markets with various artists being added to 817 editorial playlists, the reach that women musicians are receiving through EQUAL is immense. In fact, their discoveries increase by 68% after being added to the program. The hidden gems of this country who would, until a few years ago remain relatively underappreciated, now have a platform to put their vocal prowess on display not just for local audiences but for a global listener base.”
The amplification of women musicians through EQUAL was not limited to the artists selected as Ambassadors for the Month. Alycia Dias, for instance, a young and emerging playback singer saw her streams rise by an astounding 1084% since being added to the EQUAL Pakistan playlist. Sehar Gul Khan, the voice behind Bol Kaffara, was another artist who saw an exceptional 584% growth in streams since she was featured on the playlist. Nimra Gilani, and Yashal Shahid, both with 508% increase in streams were other notable additions on the list.
Pakistan, India, USA, UK and Canada were the top 5 nations where streams of EQUAL artists emerged, showcasing a global outreach for female musicians upholding the country’s flag. With 93 EQUAL artists added to it, EQUAL Pakistan became the leading editorial playlist for this cohort of female musicians followed by Women of Pakistan which had 80 singers featured on it.