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Ritviz, Anuv Jain, Hanita Bhambri and More Among Top Streamed Indian Indie Artists on Spotify

Indie-folk act When Chai Met Toast and pop singer-songwriter Kevin Fernando feature among the top 50 global artists under the streaming platform’s Radar program

Rolling Stone India Dec 22, 2021

Producer-singer Ritviz. Photo: Sahil Shikalgar

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As part of their ongoing Wrapped campaign, which took over social media feeds earlier this year, Spotify has also revealed charts for Indian independent artists who have thrived on the platform via various editorial playlists, the Fresh Finds initiative as well as their RADAR curation series.

Although artists have posted their Spotify Wrapped 2021 cards, their millions-accruing stats relate to global streams. The list released by Spotify is specific to artists streamed within India.

Electronic-pop music producer and singer Ritviz — who released a short EP Baaraat with desi electronic frontrunner Nucleya, plus singles “Thandi Hawa,” “Pran” and “Khamoshi” this year — retains the distinction of being the most-streamed independent artist in India. According to Spotify stats, acts that also feature in the top 10 include singer-songwriters such as Nikhil D’Souza and Anuv Jain, seasoned pop artist Lucky Ali, composer Shashwat Sachdev, Nucleya, pop artist Zaeden, folk-rocker Raghu Dixit, rock band The Local Train and hip-hop duo Seedhe Maut.

If you thought that was mostly skewed towards one gender, Spotify released a separate list for “Female Independent Artists in India,” although there is no comparative data. This includes Hanita Bhambri, Akanksha Bhandari, Abhilasha Sinha, Kamakshi Khanna, Tanmaya Bhatnagar and Kayan aka Ambika Nayak.

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With Spotify Radar entering India, the top three artists featured in the promo program include Bengaluru-based Adarsh Rao (with singles like “Kaari” and “Rooni” out this year), Anuv Jain and Kayan. Bands like Chandigarh’s Naalayak also feature, alongside producer OAFF, singer-songwriter Taba Chake and Raghav Meattle. Indian artists also made a global mark via Radar, with Kerala indie-folk act When Chai Met Toast’s album When We Feel Young and Chennai/Toronto singer-songwriter Kevin Fernando’s singles nudging them towards the top 50 streamed RADAR artists worldwide.

The global push via Spotify India also extended to the moves Indian indie artists made by being included in editorial playlists outside of India. Alternative act Peter Cat Recording Co., electronic music duo Lost Stories, indie rockers The F16s, producer-DJ Sandunes and Hindi pop-rock band The Yellow Diary are said to have “garnered millions of streams from outside of India.” A press release released by the streaming platform also mentioned The F16s has more listeners outside India, with the US being their top market.

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