Songboost, a trusted music monitoring app that keeps track of music trends on 130 radio stations in Uganda, 36 in Kenya, 14 in Tanzania, six in Nigeria, as well as others in a total of nine African countries like Rwanda, Ghana, DRC and Zambia, has compiled arguably the most authentic rankings for music in 2022.
The Songboost app helps musicians, managers and labels track the plays of their music both on radio and TV stations. According to the app, media houses which played the most Ugandan music were FACE TV, Dembe FM, Beat FM, Record FM, Galaxy FM, Spark TV, Radio Simba, Bunyoro TV, Next Radio and CBS FM.
Ranked based on the number of weeks spent on the top 40 charts, weeks spent at number one and how many radio stations played it and in how many countries, Songboost released 2022’s best songs.
The number one song, for example, (Picha by Pinky and Grenade) spent 28 weeks in the top 40 with ten weeks at number one and played by 105 stations in two countries.
The list is mostly dominated by the big names in the music industry with a few upcoming singers and some unpopular ones. Some artistes such as Azawi, surprisingly don’t feature in Songboost’s top 50 despite having hits including Majje and Bamututte, not to mention a sold-out maiden concert at Lugogo grounds last year.
While the songs may have been heavy on streaming sites, they clearly did not get enough airplay on radio stations that have a wider national reach. Could accusations of some artistes paying radio stations to play their music and keep it on rotation have affected the Songboost rankings?
Media personality Bryan McKenzie says that yes, some artistes, especially the big ones who have the financial capacity, pay presenters, radio DJs or the stations themselves so that they can get enough airplay while some have just established friendly relationships with presenters and DJs; these easily keep their songs on rotation.
He, however, adds that you can’t blame the industry which has become so competitive and requires high level of investment for song promotion. McKenzie says some artistes who are doing well on streaming sites may get little radio airplay because they appeal more to urban audiences.
According to McKenzie, “The number of the so-called urban radio stations is very low compared to the local radio stations... and on the urban stations, local music competes with international music for airplay.”
For example, according to Spotify, one of the biggest music streaming services in the world, Azawi was the most streamed Ugandan musician in 2022 with a total of 2.1 million streams, 215,800 listeners and her music was streamed for over 104,500 hours across 183 countries. But clearly, she was a miss on local radio stations.
“So, you find that a musician whose music plays mostly on the local stations gets more airplay because these are very many and reach a wider audience of rural people.”
He advises artistes to create music that cuts across audiences.
TOP 50 SONGS OF 2022
1. Picha - Pinky & Grenade
2. Follow - John Blaq
3. Ayi - Mudra D’Viral and Sheebah
4. Nkwata Bulungi - Sheebah
5. Forever - Jose Chameleone
6. Malaika - Winnie Nwagi
7. Obulungi Bunnuma - B2C
8. Kabisi Kandagala - David Lutalo
9. Enjoyment - Rickman Manrick & Kenzo
10.Oliwa - Carol Nantongo
11. Nkufeelinga - YkeeBenda and Chembazz
12. Teacher - Ykee Benda
13. Gwe Weka - B2C
14. Seen Don - Ronald Alimpa
15. Nkunoonya - Kataleya & Kandle
16. Chai Mata - John Blaq
17. Kanzunzu - Fik Fameica
18. Kansalewo - Sheebah
19. Fimbo - Vinka
20. Yankutude - David Lutalo
21. Yoya - Levixone and Ray G
22. Balo Balo - Mudra D’Viral
23. Mboona - David Lutalo
24. Wandiisa Ki - Rema Namakula
25. Electricity - Pheelz
26. Babandana - Grenade
27. Njagala Money - Kataleya & Kandle
28. Siri Regular - Spice Diana
29. Bya Daddy - Hellen Lukoma
30. Nkulinda - Aroma
31. Tubaale - Chris Evans
32. One Bite - Vinka
33. Muzudde - Salongo BK
34. Miwula - Kataleya& Kandle
35. Curvy Neighbour - B2C
36. Ontuuse - Rozella
37. Ntibula - Martha Mukisa
38. Ngonze - Rema Namakula
39. Another Lover - Chris Evans
40. Sembera - Geosteady
41. Wano Wano - Chosen Becky
42. Onina - Vinka
43. You - Carol Kasita
44. Sivaawo - King Saha
45. Speed Controlle - Fiona
46. Katonda w’Abanaku - Wilson Bugembe
47. My Nyash - Kataleya & Kandle
48. Malaika - Irene Kayemba
49. Kokonyo - Mudra D’Viral
50. Yono - Salongo BK