Kiyo marks the year with a massive new milestone.
Today (January 18), the Filipino hip hop artist took to social media to reveal he has hit over 1 million monthly listeners on streaming platform Spotify.
1 million monthly❤️🩹 pic.twitter.com/QyPzwHQwo7
— kiyo (@Yukihirorubio) January 18, 2023
Eight tracks from his 2021 full-length album, HARANASA dominate his top 10 most-listened tracks, with “Ikaw Lang” (Only You) streamed over 46 million times. Also in the top 10 are his 2022 single “glasshouse” and “3:15,” his collaboration with Filipino singer-songwriter syd hartha.
In an exclusive chat with HipHopDX Asia in September last year ahead of his debut international performance at ASEAN Music Showcase Festival in Singapore, he shared that he believes in rethinking how rappers define success overseas.
He remarked, “Back in our country, rappers want to go to the West, to America. I told myself, ‘Why?’ We’re here. This is our region. I think I’m getting there…I wanna go there. I wanna focus [on] my music more. I was telling myself that three years ago, actually. I’m manifesting it, and right now I’m here [in Singapore]. It’s a big, big opportunity and I’m expecting more.”
Huge streaming numbers and social media following are not entirely rare for independent Asian hip hop artists and those who are signed, but not under a major label.
This can be attributed to strong support from a highly engaged community who often create opportunities—such as establishing their own labels, and producing their own events and merchandise, among other things—for themselves in the absence of mainstream or corporate backing.
Most recently, kiyo released a grimy new single, “MAMAPATAWADMALALANA!” (Mama, Sorry It’s Gotten Worse!) a departure from his usual lo-fi, R&B-inflected style.
Stream kiyo’s HARANASA album below: