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News January 13, 2022

ARIA’s year-end charts give way to a new golden age of popular music

Senior Journalist, B2B
ARIA’s year-end charts give way to a new golden age of popular music

The Pandemic Factor, the TikTok Factor and the Playlist Factor make for strange bedfellows, but together created a new golden age of pop – fun, colourful, genre-bending and unpredictable.

They shaped the 2021 ARIA End-of-Year Charts, published today.

2021 was a year for new superstars The Kid LAROI and Olivia Rodrigo whose whole aura was that they’d always dreamed of becoming pop stars, and looked like they could define the next decade.

Rodrigo’s SOUR, the best selling album of 2021, spent eight weeks on the ARIA Albums Chart – more than any other album in the year.

Performing the 5 x Platinum ‘Stay’ on the ARIA Awards from LA’s Viper Room, LAROI said when he picked up one of his two wins, “Starting this, that’s all I ever wanted to do was bring up the culture and show the world how good Australian music was.”

14 Aussie albums went to #1 last year.

They included those by Illy, Tones And I, The Rubens, The Jungle Giants, Tash Sultana, Skegss, Amy Shark, Delta Goodrem, Luke Hemmings, Ruby Fields and Rüfüs Du Sol.

Some 64 Australian albums appeared in the Albums Chart Top 10 and 7 Australian tracks appeared in the Singles Chart Top 10.

British band Glass Animals had their first Top 10 single with ‘Heat Waves’.

It not only perched at #1 for six weeks but it stayed in the Top 10 for 48 weeks of the year in the Top 10 – a record for most weeks in the Top 10 on the ARIA Singles Chart (July 1983-present).

It was also a year of comebacks and classic acts, led by Adele and ABBA.

Jimmy Barnes scored his 13th solo #1 album in July with Flesh And Blood, overtaking Madonna and U2 for the most amount of #1 albums, with 11 top spotters each.

INXS continued to be discovered by a new gen of streamers in 2021, and the UK overtook Australia as the band’s biggest market.

At 74 years, 7 months, Elton John was the oldest artist to have a #1 single when ‘Cold Heart (Pnau Remix)’ hit the top spot in November.

You want unpredictable?

The Songs Of Disappearance album of Australian native bird calls became the first of its kind to hit the ARIA Top 10 when it debuted at #5 in December, peaking at #3 the following week.

2021 ARIA End Of Year Albums Chart Top 10

  1. Olivia Rodrigo – SOUR
  2. Adele – 30
  3. The Kid LAROI – F*ck Love (Over You)
  4. Dua Lipa – Future Nostalgia
  5. Justin Bieber – Justice
  6. Ed Sheeran – =
  7. Harry Styles – Fine Line
  8. Doja Cat – Planet Her
  9. The Weeknd – The Highlights
  10. ABBA – Voyage

2021 ARIA End Of Year Singles Chart Top 10

  1. Glass Animals – ‘Heat Waves’
  2. The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber – ‘Stay’
  3. Olivia Rodrigo – ‘Drivers License’
  4. The Kid LAROI with Miley Cyrus – ‘Without You’
  5. Dua Lipa – ‘Levitating’
  6. Olivia Rodrigo – ‘Good 4 U’
  7. Ed Sheeran – ‘Bad Habits’
  8. The Weeknd – ‘Save Your Tears’
  9. Doja Cat Feat. SZA – ‘Kiss Me More’
  10. Tiësto – ‘The Business’

2021 ARIA End Of Year Australian Albums Chart Top 10

  1. The Kid LAROI – F*ck Love (Over You)
  2. Amy Shark – Cry Forever
  3. INXS – The Very Best
  4. Spacey Jane – Sunlight
  5. Guy Sebastian – T. R. U. T. H.
  6. Lime Cordiale – 14 Steps To A Better You
  7. Cold Chisel – The Best Of Cold Chisel: All For You
  8. Paul Kelly – Paul Kelly’s Christmas Train
  9. The Wiggles – We’re All Fruit Salad!: The Wiggles’ Greatest Hits
  10. Bluey – Bluey The Album

2021 ARIA End Of Year Australian Singles Top 10

  1. The Kid LAROI & Justin Bieber – ‘Stay’
  2. The Kid LAROI with Miley Cyrus – ‘Without You’
  3. Masked Wolf – ‘Astronaut In The Ocean’
  4. Tones and I – ‘Fly Away’
  5. The Kid LAROI – ‘So Done’
  6. Tones and I – ‘Dance Monkey’
  7. Vance Joy – ‘Missing Piece’
  8. Spacey Jane – ‘Booster Seat’
  9. Keith Urban & P!nk – ‘One Too Many’
  10. Sam Fischer – ‘This City’

2021 ARIA End Of Year Vinyl Albums Chart Top 10

  1. Adele – 30
  2. Nirvana – Nevermind
  3. Harry Styles – Fine Line
  4. Arctic Monkeys – AM
  5. Queen – Greatest Hits
  6. Amy Winehouse – Back To Black
  7. Nirvana – ‘MTV – Unplugged In New York
  8. Fleetwood Mac – Rumours
  9. Pink Floyd – The Dark Side Of The Moon
  10. Lorde – Solar Power

Find the full list of 2021 ARIA End Of Year Charts here.


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