Australian artists were horrendously underplayed on commercial radio this year

The 50 most-played songs on Australian radio have been announced for 2022, and oh boy is it a rough list for Australian artists.

Local music has lost even more of the little ground it had on Australian radio, as the reveal of the 50 most-played songs from Aussie stations this year shows a worrying trend.

Of the top 50 tracks, just eight featured Australian artists. Eight. That’s only two more than the six entries Ed Sheeran alone got on the list. Our entire nation was almost beaten on home turf by one dude, it beggars belief.

Ed Sheeran copyright lawsuit
Ed Sheeran has continued his chokehold on commercial Australian radio, with almost as many entries in the top 50 as our entire nation (Photo: Markus Schreiber)

Eight entries is also down from the similarly abysmal eleven Australian songs on 2021’s list, so it appears the problem is only getting worse. Compare this triple j’s most-played list for 2022, where a whopping 60% of their list was Australian artists.

Other than local artists really copping the short end of the radio wave, we can also see that “nostalgia-bait” is on the rise, with numerous interpolations, remixes and reworks of older pop songs making this year’s list.

Elton John’s modern reinterpretations of Rocketman and Tiny Dancer titled Cold Heart (with Dua Lipa) and Hold Me Closer (with Britney Spears) respectively both made the list, as did Supafly & De Funk’s remix of Earth, Wind, & Fire’s September titled Pleasure Love, Jolyon Petch’s reinterpretation of Fleetwood Mac’s Dreams, and a mashup of Britney Spears’ Toxic with Ginuwine’s Pony by ALETGO.

It appears there’s only one way to get locals back on our airwaves: we must make a soulless club remix of The Horses by Daryl Braithwaite.

The full top 50 list via Radio Monitoring is below:

  1. Harry Styles – As It Was
  2. Becky Hill & David Guette – Remember
  3. Latto – Big Energy
  4. Jax Jones feat. MNEK – Where Did You Go
  5. Lil Nas X – That’s What I Want
  6. Justin Bieber – Ghost
  7. Lizzo – About Damn Time
  8. Elton John feat. Dua Lipa – Cold Heart
  9. SUPER-HI & Neeka – Following The Sun
  10. Vance Joy – Clarity
  11. Lost Frequencies & Calum Scott – Where Are You Now
  12. Ed Sheeran feat. Budjera – 2step
  13. Acraze feat. Cherish – Do It To It
  14. Harry Styles – Late Night Talking
  15. Ed Sheeran – Overpass Graffiti
  16. The Kid LAROI feat. Justin Bieber – Stay
  17. R3HAB & Amy Shark – Sway My Way
  18. Ed Sheeran – Shivers 
  19. Nicky Youre & Dazy – Sunroof
  20. Becky Hill & Topic – My Heart Goes (La Di Da)
  21. Adele – Oh My God
  22. GAYLE – abcdefu
  23. Dean Lewis – Hurtless
  24. Lizzo – 2 Be Loved (Am I Ready)
  25. Nial Horan & Anne-Marie – Everywhere
  26. The Kid LAROI – Thousand Miles
  27. Tate McRae – She’s All I Wanna Be
  28. Whitney Houston & Clean Bandit – How Will I Know
  29. David Guetta & Bebe Rexha – I’m Good (Blue)
  30. Shouse – Love Tonight
  31. Beyonce – Break My Soul
  32. Post Melone feat. Doja Cat – I Like You
  33. Various Artists – KIIS Mix
  34. Elton John & Britney Spears –  Hold Me Closer
  35. Lewis Capaldi – Forget Me
  36. Ed Sheeran – Bad Habits
  37. LF SYSTEM – Afraid To Feel
  38. Glass Animals – Heat Waves
  39. Imagine Dragons – Enemy
  40. Coldplay & BTS – My Universe
  41. One Republic – I Ain’t Worried
  42. Jolyon Petch – Dreams
  43. Jack Harlow – First Class
  44. Camila Cabello feat. Ed Sheeran – Bam Bam
  45. Supafly & De Funk – Pleasure Love
  46. Joel Corry & Becky Hill – History
  47. Ed Sheeran – Celestial
  48. Rosa Linn – Snap
  49. GAYLE – ABC (Nicer)
  50. ALETGO, Britney Spears & Ginuwine – Toxic Pony