Today we kicked off 2023 Spotify Wrapped, our annual campaign that celebrates fans and creators worldwide. And as the good vibes keep coming, we look back on a successful year of EQUAL, which included speaking events, festivals, and both local and global playlists featuring a large roster of talented EQUAL ambassadors. We’re thrilled to announce that Romanian superstar INNA is the most-streamed artist within the EQUAL Global playlist in 2023.
In 2020, Spotify created EQUAL, a global initiative that aims to eliminate the existing gender gap in the music industry so that women artists, composers, and producers have the representation and visibility they deserve. Since then, week after week, we’ve been raising the volume on women artists locally and internationally.
Along with being named an EQUAL Global ambassador back in April, INNA had quite a landmark 2023. Her Dhurata Dora and Stefflon Don collaborations for the track “Yummy” pleased fans—as did the release of a 10-song EP of remixes for her revival of the 1997 Sash! hit “Rock My Body.” The house music star also released a two-part studio album, Just Dance #DQH1 and Just Dance #DQH2, which showcases an ambitious new direction in the artist’s career, combining elements of other genres and sounds as part of the Dance Queen’s House project.
For the Record caught up with INNA to talk about being the top EQUAL artist, her Wrapped for Artists insights, and her plans for 2024.
What was your reaction to finding out that you’re this year’s top EQUAL artist?
It was a huge surprise! I want to thank everyone who listens to my music and supports me. It’s an absolute honor to have so many people who are there for me. As an artist, this is the love I need to feel! I’m so happy about this!
How has dance music changed since your debut single, “Hot,” topped the charts in 2009?
There are more and more dance artists in the world now, and a lot of DJs doing dance and EDM songs. It’s an expanding genre that has seen and will continue to see a lot of growth.
I’ve also changed quite a lot. In that time I made it a point to experience different collaborations, genres, and sounds in my music.
What were some of your 2023 highlights?
2023 was such a great year. My collaboration with R3HAB for “Rock My Body” conquered the charts and became a hit. I released a new album, Just Dance, featuring the music I worked on for the Dance Queen’s House project. And, of course, so many concerts. I couldn’t be more grateful for all that’s happened in 2023. Bring it on, 2024! I’m ready for you!
Tell us about Just Dance, which you’ve previously described as a refresh from your past and an important step in your evolution as an artist.
When we started, we were brainstorming, thinking how this album should sound. And overall we felt that we needed a different vibe and a whole new approach, so we changed the dynamic. I’m honestly super excited about how it all came together. The album complements my 2023 tour on the stages of the biggest electro dance festivals in the world.
What insights have you been able to take away from previous years of Artist Wrapped?
My team and I always pay attention to everything to improve our work. We work hard to make the most out of the Artist Wrapped insights to create more and more music that resonates with more people.
Which women artists do you currently have in your On Repeat playlist?
Going into the New Year, what advice do you have for other artists?
Consistency, focus, creativity, inspiration, and a lot of work are important. Surround yourself with people who share the same vibe as you. And most importantly, don’t forget to have fun!
What do you have planned for 2024?
There will be a lot of new music coming in 2024. I’ll be releasing a new album written entirely in Spanish. It’s one of the releases I can’t wait for, because it’s an important part of my work and soul and I’ve been working on it for several years. And of course, I’ll be kicking off a tour in the USA in addition to performing concerts in Mexico and Europe.
Listen to the best of the best from the dance queen herself in our This Is INNA playlist.