Mzansi Gen Zs find comfort in mellow beats

[Johannesburg, 29 May 2023] In the world of music genres and emotions, there exists a unique space for mellow beats, effortlessly transporting us to tranquility and introspection. Among Gen Z listeners in South Africa, one trend shines brightly—their unwavering love for mellow music. From chill vibes to sad melodies and easy-listening anthems, the younger generation has wholeheartedly embraced these soothing sounds to navigate life’s complexities in a fast-paced world.

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Whether it’s the introspective lyrics, delicate instrumentation, or soul-stirring vocal performances, according to Spotify data, mellow music has become a trusted companion for Gen Zs across Africa as they embrace the beauty of vulnerability and emotional depth.

For instance, in South Africa, Tom Odell’s Another Love, a track that delicately weaves a tale of pain and longing, illustrating the struggle to release a love that has faded away is the most listened-to mellow song among Gen Zs, along with Lewis Capaldi’s “Someone You Loved”, another anthem of heartbreak. Capaldi holds three spots in South Africa’s top 10 most streamed mellow music tracks.

These standout songs, along with the others, offer a diverse range of introspective and emotive experiences. They touch upon universal themes of love, heartbreak, vulnerability, and self-reflection, making them resonate deeply with Gen Zs. Through their relatable lyrics and melodies, these songs provide a refuge for young listeners, offering solace and understanding amidst the complexities of their own personal journeys.

These tracks have found their home in meticulously curated mellow playlists like Chill Hits, Soft Pop Hits, and Soft Life among others. These playlists serve as sanctuaries for the wounded hearts seeking solace, reminding them that they are not alone in their struggles.

As for the timing of mellow music consumption, South Africans tend to seek solace in the mellowness of their favourite tunes during one distinct period between 3:00 and 5:00PM, with the music keeping people company through the afternoon slump and as they finish off their days.

“Mellow music is a respite from the constant connectivity and information overload of the modern world, offering a space where listeners can find solace, connect with their emotions, and navigate the complexities of life at their own pace” says Phiona Okumu, Spotify’s Head of Music for Africa.

Below is how South African Gen Zs are consuming mellow music 

Top 10 tracks on mellow playlists among South African Gen Zs

  1. Another Love – Tom Odell
  2. Someone You Loved – Lewis Capaldi
  3. Before You Go – Lewis Capaldi
  4. Lovely – Billie Eilish ft. Khalid
  5. Because You Move Me – Helsloot, Tinlicker
  6. Romantic Homicide – d4vd
  7. Get You The Moon (feat. Snøw) – Kina, Snøw
  8. Bruises – Lewis Capaldi
  9. Be Alright – Dean Lewis
  10. Say You Won’t Let Go, James Arthur

Top 5 mellow playlists among South African Gen Zs

  1. Chill Hits
  2. Soft Pop Hits
  3. Chillin’ on a Dirt Road
  4. Sad Songs
  5. Chill Tracks
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