IZA: Record deal through Beyoncé covers and reaching 1 billion streams on Spotify

IZA is a Brazilian singer known for her blend of R&B, pop, reggae, soul, and Afro-Brazilian elements. From her breakout single “Pesadão” to her latest releases, IZA’s music reflects her diverse cultural background and resonates with listeners of all ages. She has a powerful voice and stage presence, so, if you are a fan of this genre, you don’t want to miss the opportunity to learn more about her through this article!

This artist has a large fan base in the Afro-centric music scene in Brazil, with 16M followers on Instagram and 4.1M monthly listeners on Spotify. She has established herself as a prominent and influential figure in the industry.

IZA Bold Creators Club Influencer Marketing Agency South America Brazil
IZA on Instagram

The star factor from the start

Isabela Cristina Correia de Lima Lima, professionally known as IZA, is a Brazilian singer, songwriter, instrumentalist, and presenter. She was born in Rio de Janeiro on September 3, 1990. IZA’s success in the Brazilian music market may surprise some, but it all started at a young age, moving to Natal, Rio Grande do Norte at the age of 6 due to her father’s transfer to a naval base there.

While in Natal, she joined a church choir and developed her vocal skills. When she returned to Rio de Janeiro at the age of 14, she continued to sing at churches, local events, and family parties, often charging small fees for her performances.

As an 18-year-old, she got a scholarship to study Advertising and Publicity at PUC-Rio, where she graduated in 2013. After completing her studies, IZA began working as a video editor also creating a YouTube channel in her spare time, where she published videos of herself singing cover songs.

One of IZA’s early covers, a performance of Beyoncé’s “XO” posted on YouTube in 2014, received over 371K views and garnered praise for her emotive delivery and high-quality production. Her followers were impressed by her powerful vocals and ability to the hit song and her personal touch.

This artist gained widespread attention and in 2016 signed with Warner Music thanks to the covers she uploaded to her YouTube channel, featuring popular artists such as Adele, Beyoncé, and Rihanna. Her talent and charisma caught the eye of both the public and the label.

After signing with the label, IZA’s value significantly increased. In 2021, it’s estimated that she charges BRL 200K (USD 37K) per show, and it was stated that she demands a private jet for performances outside of Rio de Janeiro.

Before focusing on original compositions, IZA recorded songs for Brazilian soap operas in the year she signed her contract. Her first promotional single was “Quem Sou Eu” for the soap opera Rock Story, and she also re-recorded Nina Simone’s “I Put a Spell on You” for the soap opera Pega Pega.

According to the artist, her interest in music was sparked by watching the singing competition “The Voice Brasil” on the TV channel Globo. She was inspired to pursue her dream of singing after seeing the auditions and realizing that she too could have the courage to chase her passion.

Dealing with racism and embracing self-love

IZA faced prejudice and discrimination as a child when she moved to Rio Grande do Norte at the age of 6, as she was the only black student in her class. To fit in and avoid racist comments, she underwent chemical treatments to straighten her hair at the age of 12.

Despite ultimately embracing the singularity of her natural hair and receiving positive feedback for them today, IZA struggled with self-acceptance and internalized societal standards of beauty during her childhood and adolescence. It wasn’t until she was 20, after a year of not relaxing with her hair, that she fully understood and appreciated her natural hair structure.

Hair relaxing is a chemical treatment that permanently straightens the hair by breaking down the hair strands. This process can be harmful and can potentially burn the skin, cause permanent damage to the scalp, and lead to hair loss if it is not applied properly.

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Credibility, focus and faith were the words most repeated by IZA during her interview for Vogue Brasil, in 2022.

The feeling that you’re not allowed to commit mistakes. A parameter that you apply in all the work you do. There are invisible barriers that racism creates. Unfortunately in Brazil, from the moment you are a successful and famous black person, you don’t stop suffering racism, but people start to look at you differently, which is regrettable. We all deserve respect.

IZA’s interview for Vogue Magazine.

Path to stardom: breaking records and stereotypes

Her first album was released in 2018, with the name ”Dona de Mim”, the album contains 14 tracks and has participation from important names within the Brazilian music industry such as Ivete Sangalo (35M on Instagram), Gloria Groove (4.7M on Instagram) and much more. The album’s awareness was so great that it was nominated for the 2018 Latin Grammy Award in the category of Best Contemporary Pop Album in Portuguese. The album itself already has over 1B plays within the Spotify platform.

According to estimates, IZA’s label earned approximately BRL 20M (approximately USD 3.7M) from the streams of her album on Spotify. It is common for artists to receive a royalty of 10-15% from the total earnings of their music, which would mean that IZA earned a minimum of BRL 2M (approximately USD 372K) from the streams of her album.

Before her debut album, IZA released ”Pesadão”, with over 370M views on YouTube and 117M streams on Spotify, she managed to conquer Brazil with this hit in October 2017. The album itself already has over 1B plays within the Spotify platform. Her debut song has earned at least BRL 4.7M (USD 1.1M) in total.

With the same name as her debut album, the song “Dona de Mim” (Owner Of Myself), IZA brought the world a musical work impeccably as a national hit. The lyrics explain that IZA is the only one who can decide her future; during the music video, she shows women going through daily situations and having to prove themselves through adversities.

On YouTube, the song has already passed the 251M views mark, while on Spotify it contains more than 114M streams.”Dona de Mim” has earned a total of BRL 5.4M (approximately USD 1M) in streams, maintaining a strong balance compared to IZA’s other popular songs.

IZA’s exceptional vocal abilities and unique style have earned her a devoted fan base, and her recent accomplishment of having two singles surpassing 100 million streams on Spotify is a reflection of her significant influence and lasting success in the music industry. “Pesadão” and “Dona de Mim” have become fan favorites and have helped IZA make history as the first Black woman in Latin America to reach this impressive milestone

IZA’s dreams of pursuing a career in music were aided by her appearance on the eighth season of the competitive music reality show, The Voice. While on the show, she proved to be a natural coach and mentor, taking over for Carlinhos Brown (2M on Instagram) as a coach for the season due to his other commitments.

She displayed her unparalleled empathy and ability to give valuable tips and guidance to the contestants, showing that she was born to guide and nurture aspiring singers. It was clear that she fully deserved her place on the jury.

I am extremely honored to have the opportunity to sit in the coach’s chair on The Voice, especially considering the responsibility that comes with filling the shoes of someone as talented and respected as Carlinhos Brown. He is truly one of the greatest music producers and artists in the world, and I have always looked up to him. His work will serve as inspiration for me as I coach and mentor the talented singers on the show.

IZA on Instagram, 2019.

One of the highest paid names in advertisement

Even before becoming well-known in the music industry, IZA was already collaborating with L’Oréal Paris. In 2017, she participated in a campaign for the brand and even had a music video to promote their line of hair products for different hair textures. This partnership helped to establish IZA as a prominent and influential figure in the beauty and fashion industry as well.

L’Oréal Paris and Iza released a music video titled “Esse brilho é meu,” which celebrated the strength and empowerment of women with unique stories. The video aimed to inspire and uplift women, promoting self-confidence and self-love. This collaboration highlighted the importance of celebrating diversity and individuality.

The video featured Flavia Pavanelli (19M on Instagram), Iza, Juliana Nalu (815K on Instagram), and Taís Araújo (12.6M on Instagram), showcasing these inspiring women as they embrace their place in the world and fight for their dreams. With 46M views on YouTube, the music video was a financial success, earning BRL 805K (USD 431K).

IZA has also capitalized on her large Instagram following by partnering with brands for sponsored content. With over 16M followers on the platform, the singer and creator of the hit song “Dona de Mim” have proven herself to be a highly influential and effective spokesperson for these advertisements.

She became the face of the digital bank PicPay, with a contract that has guaranteed her appearances in Youtube ads, Instagram posts, and even TV commercials. As the new PicPay ambassador, she promotes during the AD the advantages of the app and the extra operations that allow the use of its services through a smartphone right in the palm of your hand.

The 30-second AD video itself got 41M views on the brand’s Youtube channel. IZA has a massive presence on social media, and her devoted followers are always involved in every project she gets her hand into. Additionally, the ad video generated a significant amount of revenue, with a reported value of BRL 384K (USD 71K).

IZA represents PicPay very well. She is a versatile artist, democratic, involved with positive causes, and with an inspiring trajectory. She is at a brilliant moment in her career, establishing herself as one of the main Brazilian artists, and we are also going through this more mature phase and, through our new signature, we want to show how we are becoming part of Brazilians’ daily lives.

Phillip Klien, vice president of growth & marketing for the brand.

IZA became the ambassador of the travel agency Decolar. The campaign was named #TchauTBT (bye TBT), which features a parody of IZA’s song “Brisa” and encourages people to take off on new adventures. The TBT in the hashtag stands for “throwback Thursday,” a popular trend on social media where people share old photos on Thursdays. With this campaign, Decolar inspires travelers to create new memories and not just look back on the past.

Decolar, launched a, advertising campaign featuring social media posts, website and app placements, and TV and radio airings in major cities such as Belo Horizonte, Brasília, Porto Alegre, Rio de Janeiro, and São Paulo.

The campaign included ads in airports located in Belo Horizonte, Curitiba, Manaus, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, and São Paulo. The campaign’s YouTube ad alone received an impressive 62M views and made BRL 582K (USD 108K). In addition to these efforts, Decolar promised exclusive promotions and discounts on its products and travel services throughout the year on its website and app.

Despite being only 32 years old, she has already made a significant impact and established herself as one of the biggest names in the industry. As she continues to thrive and make history with her impressive achievements, it’s clear that IZA is just getting started and we can expect to see even more from her in the future.

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