Everything he touches turns to gold. Indeed, platinum. The Weeknd is not made to break records, but to burn them.
Not even the time to reappear on the scene after a couple of months of record silence, as many as have passed since the release of “Nothing is Lost (You give me strength)”, the main track of the soundtrack of “Avatar 2”, which Abel Makkonen Tesfaye immediately smashed another record. Snatching it, so to speak, from Michael Jackson, who until now was the sole owner. With the King of Pop, the 33-year-old Canadian singer-songwriter now shares the fact that he is one of two male solo singers to have conquered the top of the Billboard Hot 100 – the chart relating to the most popular singles in the US – with multiple singles extracted from three different album. In Jackson’s case, “Off the wall”, “Thriller” and “Bad”. In the case of The Weeknd, “Beauty behind the madness”, “Starboy” and “After Hours”. The merit, in the case of the Canadian pop star, is the remix of “Die for you” in a duet with Ariana Grande, who has just ousted “Flowers” by Miley Cyrus from the top of the US charts.
The Weeknd is not sated, one might say. Not yet. Abel Makkonen Tesfaye is bulimic of records, staggering figures, prizes. Last January, with the hit “Blinding lights” he conquered the first place in the chart of the most listened to singles of all time on Spotify and saw the number of monthly listeners on the platform grow to reach 95.2 million users. He has gone further in recent weeks: he has now officially become the first artist to have more than 100 million – 100.5, to be exact – monthly listeners on the popular streaming platform And while the new album “After Hours (Live at SoFi Stadium)”, the first live album of his career after four unreleased albums, a collection and three EPs shipped to stores since 2015 – the year of his breakthrough with the hit “Can’t feel my face” – to today , begins to grind streams on streams on Spotify and surroundings, the expectation for the artist’s return to the stage is growing.
The world tour will also stop in Italy next summer. Two shows are scheduled, both in Milan: The Weeknd will perform at the Ippodromo La Maura on July 26 and 27 (the first date is already sold out).
The remix of “Die for you” with Ariana Grande has totaled 23.2 million streams on Spotify in less than a week. The collaboration between the two artists comes on the heels of the stunning resurgence of the single, first released in 2016, which in recent months has completed “the longest climb to #1 in US radio history”, also conquering the top of the Billboard Radio Songs Chart for two weeks. Since early 2023, “Die For You” has been stable in the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, returning after years to the Top 20 of the Billboard Global 200. In the version contained in “After Hours (Live at SoFi Stadium)”, The Weeknd sings it alone: the disc, containing 31 tracks (Spotify thanks you), was recorded last November on the occasion of the first stop in the United States of the “After Hours Til Dawn Tour”: produced by the Canadian singer-songwriter himself, the album is for everyone the effects a sort of greatest hits that brings together the hits collected so far by The Weeknd, from “Can’t feel my face” to “Save your tears”, passing through “Die for you”, “Blinding lights” and “Wicked games”.
And now The Weeknd is also aiming for on-demand platforms: the special “Live at SoFi Stadium” arrives on HBO, of which the live album represents the ideal soundtrack. “The Idol” will soon be released, the series with Lily-Rose Depp directed by Sam Levinson, brilliant author of “Euphoria”, in which Abel Tesfaye will emblematically play the leader of a modern cult.