Spotify, the renowned global online streaming platform, announced that ten designers participating in the 2023 Lagos Fashion Week have taken over its flagship playlist, “Fashion Forward,” for the month of October. Victor Okpala, Spotify’s Artiste and Label Partnerships Manager for West Africa, revealed this exciting collaboration.
According to Okpala, this curated playlist is designed to feature tracks that seamlessly complement the designers’ runway exhibitions, providing a perfect fusion of music and fashion. The 2023 edition of Lagos Fashion Week is scheduled to be held from October 24 to October 29, offering a unique platform for fashion and music to converge.
The ten designers showcasing their unique styles and creativity through this collaboration include Abigail Ajobi, Emmanuel Okoro, Frank Aghuno, Bubu Ogisi, Aristide Loua, Michelle Adepoju, Adebayo Oke-Lawal, Sisiano Paolo, Taju Ibrahim, and Iona McCreath. These talented designers hail from various parts of the continent, including Nigeria, Côte d’Ivoire, and Kenya.
Fashion and music have long been intertwined, each influencing the other in a beautiful dance of creativity and self-expression. Okpala emphasised that Spotify consistently demonstrates its support for various facets of creativity, seamlessly merging different aspects of the industry.
He also highlighted the significance of this unique partnership between Lagos Fashion Week and Spotify. It underscores the designers’ individuality and the exceptional contributions that both fashion and music bring to their respective worlds.
The playlist created by these designers encompasses a wide range of genres and includes Afrobeats tracks from acclaimed artists like Burna Boy, Davido, and Rema. Listeners can anticipate the discovery of Afropop hits from talents like Mali’s Fatoumata Diawara, a nostalgic journey with the legendary Fela Kuti, and alternative sounds from emerging Nigerian artists such as SGaWD and Lady Donli. Other artists featured in the playlist are Ghana’s Amaarae and Kenya’s Just a Band.
The “Fashion Forward” playlist, boasting nearly 46,000 saves, is one of Spotify’s highly favoured fashion playlists, alongside others like “Runway” and “Fit Check.” Its audience spans various age groups, appealing to young adults in their late teens and individuals in their forties.
Remarkably, the playlist has gained immense popularity in diverse global cities, including Lagos and Los Angeles, as well as countries such as Japan and the UK.
Okpala also shared that, for the 2023 edition of New York Fashion Week, Spotify partnered with the Council of Fashion Designers of America, the sole organiser of the schedule of shows, to launch the official New York Fashion Week playlist. It was mentioned that Thebe Magugu was the first African-based fashion designer to curate the “Fashion Forward” playlist in March.
This playlist offers a diverse selection of songs and artists spanning different eras. It takes listeners on a musical journey through time, featuring tracks dating back to 1975 with Fela Kuti’s “Water No Get Enemy,” along with timeless hits like Gadji Celi’s “Femme de feu” from 1996. The playlist continues through the 2010s, including songs like Wande Coal’s “You Bad” and Davido’s “Dami Duro.” Finally, it concludes with Rema’s chart-topping single “Charm,” a contemporary sensation.
Emmanuel Okoro, the Creative Director of Emmy Kasbit, expressed the close relationship between music and fashion. He emphasised their symbiotic and divine connection, illustrating the importance of music in setting the mood for a fashion show and the role of attire in complementing an artist’s performance.
This collaborative endeavour between designers and Spotify not only adds a unique dimension to the 2023 Lagos Fashion Week but also celebrates the harmonious relationship between fashion and music.