We know that chillout music is having a big moment during the Covid-19 pandemic, but one of Spotify’s editors has been making the case for this as a boost for new artists.
The streaming service’s ‘Chill Vibes’ playlist saw its following grow by more than 7% over March and April, while its monthly average users spiked fivefold according to Billboard. In an interview, editor Lizzy Szabo told the publication that she has been “feeling a hyper-responsibility to program more artists into this space” due to Covid-19’s impact on musicians’ incomes – including for new artists “taking a bigger chance and putting them more toward the top of the list”.
This, apparently, is part of a wider strategy across Spotify’s growing playlists: “If the behaviour changes; if other moods or genres rise to the surface, we’ll try and surface whichever emerging artists fit in those spaces, too.”
The interview came as Spotify published some data on trends in user-created playlists during the pandemic: spikes for gardening, baking, home-school and working-from-home themed playlists, etc.