Spotify unveils Saudi Arabia’s favorite songs of 2019

Aseel Hammam, Billie Eilish and Halsey (pictured) among the top streamed artists in Saudi Arabia. AFP
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Updated 31 December 2019

Spotify unveils Saudi Arabia’s favorite songs of 2019

  • Today, Spotify released its list of the most-streamed artists and songs in the world
  • Iraqi pop singer Aseel Hameem is the most-streamed female artist in Saudi Arabia in 2019

DUBAI: Does it feel like Aseel Hameem is all you listen to lately? Well, as it turns out, you are not alone. Today, Spotify released its list of the most-streamed artists and songs in the world this year, and Iraqi singing sensation Aseel Hameem is the most-streamed female artist in Saudi Arabia in 2019. Her latest hit “Al Mafrood” had a hand in her success, as it was the top streamed song in the Kingdom.

The Baghdad-born singer’s track even beat out Lil Nas X’s instantly-viral “Old Town Road” remix, which came in at number two. Meanwhile, fellow Iraqi singer Rahma Riad’s “Waed Menni” came in third place. Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes’ “Senorita” and Halsey’s “Without Me” rounded out the top five.

Globally, Post Malone was the most popular artist of the year, followed by Billie Eilish and Ariana Grande who hold the second and third spots respectively.

Read on for the top streamed songs and artists in Saudi Arabia this year.

Top three streamed songs

“Al Mafrood” by Aseel Hameem

 


This four-minute tune was also the most streamed song of the summer 2019 in the Kingdom.

 

“Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X feat. Billy Ray Cyrus

 


The rapper, alongside Billy Ray Cyrus, took home the 2019 Country Music Association Award for Musical Event of the Year, making Lil Nas X the first-ever rapper to win the country music award.

 

“Waed Menni” by Rahma Riad

 


Iraqi pop is clearly having a moment in the region with Rahma Riad, daughter of Iraqi musician Riad Ahmed,  clinching the third spot with her catchy hit.

 

Top three streamed artists

Aseel Hameem

The 35-year-old artist who was born in Baghdad made her singing debut at the age of 22. She’s since released a number of studio albums and chart-topping hits.

XXXTentacion

 


It appears that music fans in Saudi Arabia are continuing to honor the late rapper XXXTentacion as he’s the country’s most streamed male artist.

 

BTS

According to Spotify, the Middle East is one of the biggest consumers of K-pop and the 2019 wrap-up further confirmed this with the seven-member boyband BTS, who performed at a sold-out concert in Saudi Arabia this summer, cementing their spots as one of the top streamed artists in the country - they came in thrid place.


Gerard Butler talks family and high-octane action films

Updated 30 September 2020

Gerard Butler talks family and high-octane action films

LOS ANGELES: Hollywood’s latest disaster movie offering, “Greenland,” sees humanity threatened by a comet on a collision course with Earth — Arab News sat down with stars Gerard Butler and Morena Baccarin to find out more about the high-octane film.

While many disaster movies focus on experts in big-picture attempts to stop the disaster, “Greenland” keeps the stakes personal by following the Garrity family as they journey to find shelter before it’s too late.

“This story is so relatable because this guy, he’s not a Secret Service agent. He’s not a superhero,” Butler said of his character, John Garrity. “He’s just a dad and he’s not even a perfect dad.”

“Greenland” follows the Garrity family as they journey to find shelter before it’s too late. Supplied

As meteorites decimate cities and people give in to panic, the estranged Garrity family grows closer, mirroring Butler’s real-life relationships with his parents, who despite having not seen him in months due to COVID-19 restrictions, are still just as doting as ever. 

“It’s very sweet that they still care and you’re still their little boy,” Butler said, adding that he mined his relationship with his parents for insight on how to play a caring father. “That definitely helped me in the role, to play that father who will do anything in these trying times to try and protect his family in the midst of this craziness.”

The film was directed by Ric Roman Waugh. Supplied

And while their characters were growing closer, the actors formed a tight knit group as well. Co-star Morena Baccarin told Arab News that she coached and comforted the actor playing the family’s young son — Roger Dale Flloyd — and that she and Butler became good friends on set.

“There are days where you’re just so tired and you’re not in the mood or you don’t want to put yourself through the ringer emotionally,” Baccarin — who plays estranged wife Allison Garrity — said, adding “we just could check in with each other and be there for each other and that was really nice.”

Directed by Ric Roman Waugh, the film has faced repeated delays in the US, but has already hit the big screens in some international markets — including Saudi Arabia and the UAE — where COVID-19 regulations have been amended.