Top 20 Music Artists of 2022
From comebacks by Kendrick Lamar and Beyonce to chart-toppers from Taylor Swift and Harry Styles to Pakistani songs like Pasoori going global, 2022 has been a big year for many of our favourites, old and new. These are the top 20 music artists that dominated the year for us.
From making history by being the first Pakistani music artist to win a Grammy to being featured in NY Times Square earlier this year, Arooj Aftab has been making waves in the music industry, globally. We all know that she made it to Obama’s playlist in 2021, but this year we saw her in the spotlight more than before. Her song Mehram from Coke Studio 14 received positive reviews and then she also got nominated for another Grammy this year (second time in a row). We cannot wait to hear more from her in the years ahead.
Xulfi is a musical genius. There is no denying that. He might have stopped singing, but he hasn’t backed down in helping create musical masterpieces that come out from this country. We always appreciate people in the forefront, but the people at the back end are equally responsible for each hit. Xulfi took the entire country, nay world by storm with Coke Studio 14. Not only did we see diversity in music but we were able to see almost each song reach global audience. His creativity is something we truly appreciate in our industry and we are so happy to see him create brilliant things every year.
Hasan Raheem has become a Gen Z sensation in Pakistan. He had paved his way in the industry earlier, but this year we are glad we saw and heard more of him throughout the year. From his Coke Studio 14 debut with Peechay Hutt, featuring Talal Qureshi and Justin Bibis, the song made its way to Ms Marvel. Not only that, his song with Natasha Noorani Faltu Pyaar became an instant hit with the listeners. Along with that he just released his latest album Nautanki in December. This music artist is not coming slow and we are here for it.
Another Gen Z sensation who has been part of creating some great music that came out of this country this year. From Aag to Peechay Hutt that were featured in Ms Marvel, Talal’s career graph keeps rising and there is no slowing down. Over the year he has worked with various artists including Faris Shafi, Maanu, Hasan Raheem, Natasha Noorani to name a few, in creating some of the popular hits this year. His take on electronic music and playing with the sonic landscape has been highly appreciated by listeners and we cannot wait to hear more.
We know Faris Shafi needs no Introduction, but the man has been in the spotlight this year on various fronts. He has been added to our Rising Stars category for his acting in The Legend of Maula Jatt, but on the singing front, Faris has been popular as ever. From singing Muaziz Saarif with Meesha Shafi for Coke Studio 14, to his numerous single releases including Vitamin D and Jashan-e-HipHop, we cannot wait to hear (and see) more of him in 2023.
Not only did Ali Sethi make waves with Pasoori in 2022, he also was very active in the music scene worldwide, this year. With that being said, the success of Pasoori is no secret as it became the Most Searched Song and the Most Hummed Song of 2022. He also became the talk of the town for his fancy outfits sported at various concerts.
Naseebo Lal has been on the rise, again and we couldn’t be happier. From her 2021 PSL Anthem to her Coke Studio 14 hit Tu Jhoom with the legendary Abida Parveen needs no justification. The Pakistani folk singer has been in the spotlight recently for her work and we hope to see more of her in the coming years.
Honorary Mention – Abida Parveen
He has been one of the most popular musicians in the country amongst the youth. From giving us hits like Habibi this year to his appearance in Sinf-e-Aahan, he has been in the limelight this year.
Young Stunners released many popular songs this year, including Game On and Azma Ley. The duo’s biggest independent song of the year, Why has crossed 5 million YouTube views. They had earlier collaborated with Pepsi for the Why Not Meri Jaan campaign and this year they were seen in Coke Studio 14. Their song with Faisal Kapadia Phir Milenge has reached 14 million YouTube views.
The Indian rapper who was killed earlier this year had a niche audience. Following his death, he became a name everyone knew of. From getting tributes by international artists at various concerts to his songs 295 hitting top charts and on Spotify’s playlists, the rapper was known to be one of the greatest Punjabi artist of his generation. He was also considered as a key figure in opening the doors for Punjabi artists into mainstream music. Looks like his legacy is here to stay.
With his fifth studio album, Lamar once again was able to spark conversation around sensitive and controversial topics. The Pulitzer-Prize winners’ album debuted at No.1, with all 18 of its tracks, as well as the single The Heart Part 5 all reaching the Billboard Hot 100.
Taylor Swift’s latest album, Midnights had the biggest debut of the year. Not only did all 20 tracks reach the charts, but for the first time in Billboard’s 64-year history, a single artist held each of the Top 10 spots on the charts concurrently.
Bad Bunny topped not only the charts this year but also the lists of Spotify’s Most-Streamed Albums Of 2022 Globally, Billboard Top Artists Year-End 2022, and Billboard 200 Albums Year-End 2022. The artist was announced as Apple Music’s Artist of the Year.
Following the legacy of 2016’s legendary Lemonade, Renaissance reached No.1 on the charts, with Break My Soul not only retaining the top spot but also receiving the Grammy nomination for Record of the Year, totalling her 2023 nominations to nine.
Harry Styles’ As It Was became one of the longest-running No.1 songs in history. The viral song received 383 million YouTube views. The album has been nominated for six Grammys, with the lead single receiving four on its own.
The rapper launched his ninth album, which debuted at No.1. With six Grammy nominations, and a full 16-song tracklist reaching Billboard’s Hot 100, the album was an instant hit.
Post Malone’s Twelve Carat Toothache debuted at No.2, becoming his fourth straight Top 5 release. His single I Like You (A Happier Song) with Doja Cat peaked at No.3 on the charts and received a Grammy nomination as well.
Lizzo’s Special received five Grammy nominations this year, with the viral song About Damn Time receiving three. Her fourth studio album has been the first to gain her the No.1 spot on the charts.
Meghan Trainor’s fifth major album opened at No.16 on the charts, with her viral single Made You Look reaching over 50 million YouTube views in just a month.
Charlie Puth’s Light Switch dominated social media at the beginning of the year. The song has received 123 million YouTube views and peaked at No.28 on Billboard’s Hot 100.