That’s quickly altering. Whereas radio undoubtedly stays a vital medium on the continent (even in South Africa, its most developed economic system, 80% of the population tunes in to the radio a minimum of as soon as every week), a brand new crop of African creators is profiting from the alternatives offered by podcasting.
In doing so, they’re not solely discovering new and progressive methods to inform their very own tales, however to addressing subjects like gender norms, social challenges, and the expertise of constructing lives and careers in a few of Africa’s most vibrant and fastest-growing cities.
An enabling surroundings
Whereas podcasting has been round in a single kind or one other because the early 2000s, it solely actually took off within the 2010s in many of the world. On the continent, its emergence is much more current. It was solely in 2014, for instance, that South Africa obtained its first high-profile podcasting manufacturing home within the form of CliffCentral. However as smartphones have grow to be extra ubiquitous and succesful, and information prices have fallen, an enabling surroundings for the consumption and manufacturing of podcasts has been created.
In Kenya, for instance, of the 40% of the population with internet access, 99.7% have a smartphone. In Nigeria, in the meantime, those self same figures sit at 50% and 99.5% respectively. Much more critically, the price of connectivity is falling throughout a lot of the continent. Whereas cell information stays costly in lots of locations, a number of African nations (Cameroon, Ghana, Libya, Morocco, and South Africa) reached the United Nations’ ‘1 for 2’ affordability target – 1GB information for not more than 2% common month-to-month earnings in 2021. A rising variety of submarine cables connecting the continent to the remainder of the world signifies that each fastened and cell connection charges will proceed to fall.
On the similar time, peripherals like podcasting microphones have grow to be extra inexpensive and audio modifying software program has grow to be simpler to make use of, which means that nearly anybody can begin a podcast right this moment. Rising familiarity with video-conferencing instruments on account of the pandemic, in the meantime, signifies that African podcasters can convey on friends from wherever on the planet.
At Spotify, we’re dedicated to taking part in our half on this revolution by reducing the limitations for African creators, enabling them to launch a profession in audio, no matter their monetary backing, skilled background, or the place they reside. We’re additionally dedicated to celebrating African creators by showcasing the sounds of Africa which are taking over the worldwide stage.
In fact, that’s made an ideal deal simpler by the distinctive storytellers that abound in Africa. And more and more, these storytellers are innovating within the podcasting area.
I said what I said, for instance, is hosted by entrepreneur Feyikemi Abudu and storyteller Jola Ayeye, and tells tales concerning the Lagos millennial expertise in an sincere, engrossing, and humorous manner. Additionally produced in Nigeria, Tea With Tay is hosted by Taymesan and covers societal points and private experiences with celebrities and different friends in a enjoyable, light-hearted, and entertaining manner.
Kenya’s The Sandwich Podcast, in the meantime, is offered in a mixture of English, Swahili, and Sheng, Kenya’s native slang, and is hosted by 4 creatives discussing their life experiences. In the same vein is After School Is After School with Sis G.U. Produced in South Africa and hosted by Gugulethu Nyatsumba, she makes use of the present to talk extra brazenly and actually concerning the battles that she continues to face in her 20s.
Way more critical, however no much less participating, is Mantalk.ke. Hosted by Eli Mwenda and Oscar Koome, the present tackles a variety of points together with fatherhood, feminism, courting, and self-care. The podcast goals to focus on constructive types of masculinity moderately than the extra poisonous varieties that dominate media narratives.
The continent can be making its personal contributions to the wildly in style true crime style, most notably with True Crime South Africa. Hosted by Nicole Engelbrecht, the present covers solved and unsolved South African true crime circumstances.
These are only a small pattern of the unimaginable issues African creators are doing within the audio area. There are lots of extra sharing their experience and love for entrepreneurship, finance, sport, and dozens of different subjects. Others are utilizing audio to create compelling dramas that individuals can hearken to on their commutes or whereas they’re working. The extra assist and promotion they get, the extra the world will sit up and hearken to the sounds of Africa. And at Spotify, we’re dedicated to taking part in our half.
Jocelyne Muhutu-Remy is Spotify’s managing director for sub-Saharan Africa.