Belfast Telegraph

Madonna still off-key for Radio 1

BBC Radio 1 is continuing to snub Madonna despite the Queen of Pop looking set to notch up her 12th UK number one album.

The Material Girl singer, 56 - who has repeatedly reinvented herself over the last 30 years - is not on Radio 1's playlist which rates ''musical merit'' and relevance to its listeners.

The station had its weekly playlist meeting yesterday afternoon - a session that can last a couple of hours in which songs are chosen - and Madonna's current single Living For Love was not included.

Her latest album Rebel Heart was outselling the current number one from Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds by three copies to one after 24 hours on sale, the Official Charts Company said earlier this week.

The new playlist will be active from Monday when Madonna is expected to be the highest ranking artist on the album chart.

Radio 1 - which has an audience of mainly 15 to 29-year-olds - said it never bans artists and added that her age would have played no part in the decision-making process.

But Madonna told The Sun: "My manager said to me, 'If you're not in your 20s, it's hard. You might get your record played in your 30s. There's a handful of people who do - Pharrell got lucky. But if you're in your 50s, you can forget it'."

In a statement, the station said: "Radio 1 do not ever ban artists and Madonna's track Living For Love has been played on the station.

"The tracks are chosen on musical merit and their relevance to our young audience on a case-by-case basis, and whilst around 40% of the country's 15 to 29-year-olds tune into Radio 1 each week, an artist's age is never a factor."

The station added: "The song is not currently on our playlist."

Living For Love, which was released ahead of schedule in December due to internet leaks, has been played once on Radio 1 on an evening show in which presenters can choose tracks that are not on the playlist, as well as on the official chart.

The controversial star performed Living For Love at the Brits when she tumbled in front of millions of viewers after getting caught up in her cape.

The Queen of Pop's previous number one albums include Like A Virgin (1984), True Blue (1986), Like A Prayer (1989), Hard Candy (2008) and MDNA (2012).

She recently announced a tour of Europe, North America, Australia and Asia.

Sir Paul McCartney, who at 72 is 16 years older than Madonna, is currently on the Radio 1 playlist, and the station pointed out that Radio 1 presenter Annie Nightingale, 74, is significantly older than Madonna.

She is on air every Friday morning from 3am to 5am.


From Belfast Telegraph