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  • Writer's pictureEmil Tiedemann

My 101 Favourite Songs of 2021

Updated: Feb 20, 2023

Who doesn't love music?! You'd be hard pressed to find somebody out there who doesn't at least love some singer, band, album, or song. It's just engrained in our spirit, a part of our psyche! Sure, there are some people who love music more (or far more) than others, perhaps even obsessed with the stuff! I don't know if I'd say I'm obsessed with music, but I'd certainly say I'm a huge fan. Music has always been a big part of my life and I'm sure it will be until the day I die.

But whenever I click on a link for one of those annual lists of the year's best songs, I am disappointed with what I see. Or hear, I should say. I rarely notice any songs that I thought were stand-outs during the year on these lists, which are often packed with music that just doesn't do it for me. And that's fine, because we're all different and music is highly subjective, like any art form.

I feel like too many music publications who put together these "best of the year" rankings are really trying to go for shock factor with some of their choices, while others are simply trying to meet a quota of diversity (and I don't mean cultural or racial diversity) when it comes to the artists who make the final cut. And in other cases, some music critics are perhaps just too pretentious for their own good, trying to impress their readers or colleagues with some obscure or random song that would set them apart from the pack.

And that's a shame, because good music is good music. I don't care how well it did on the charts, or what country the artist is from, or if the song has some sort of social message, or whatever. I believe in ranking music based on how much you actually like the music, rather than factoring in things like whether that artist has just died or if their genre of music is trending at the moment. That shit simply shouldn't matter.

That is why I wanted to put together my own list of my favourite songs from 2021, because I feel like these songs should be heard and shared! I know that there are other people out there with similar musical tastes who might appreciate some recommendations. I know I would! Plus, I think it would be fun to look back on these lists to see where my personal tastes stood at any given moment in time.

I have created a Spotify playlist of all of these songs if you'd like to check it out on that platform instead. I hope you find at least a few favourites amongst these 101 tracks (for the record, I listened to nearly 4,500 new songs this year!), and feel free to send me your own recommendations or perhaps even your own list of the "best music of 2021!"

1. “The Mission” by Bakar

2. “Sunday Suit” by Tyne-James Organ

3. “Hard Drive” by Cassandra Jenkins

4. “Tumbado En El Jardín Viendo Atardecer” by Sen Senra

5. “All Eyes on Me” by Bo Burnham

6. “Little Bit of Love” by Tom Grennan

7. “Where Are You Now” by Lost Frequencies feat. Calum Scott

8. “Save Your Tears” by The Weeknd

9. “Kids (Don’t End Up Like Me)” by The Academic

10. “Younger” by TEEKS

11. “Romeo” by Jungle feat. Bas

12. “Seventeen Going Under” by Sam Fender

13. “Starting Line” by Luke Hemmings

14. “Don’t Go Yet” by Camila Cabello

15. “Oh My My” by Burak Yeter, Montiego, & Séb Mont

16. “Raw Thoughts” by Baby Queen

17. “One More Trip” by Julian Lamadrid

18. “Nelsonwood Lane” by Matt Maeson

19. “Witchoo” by Durand Jones & the Indications

20. “Come In Closer” by Rhye

21. “I Miss the Future” by Lost Kings feat. Jordan Shaw

22. “Would You” by The Vamps

23. “Creature” by Grace Gaustad

24. “Everything and Nothing” by Mob Rich

25. “KEEP MOVING” by Jungle

26. “lost” by Hugar

27. “Mirror” by Sigrid

28. “drivers license” by Olivia Rodrigo

29. “I Do This All the Time” by Self Esteem

30. “You” by Regard, Troye Sivan, & Tate McRae

31. “Kiss Me More” by Doja Cat & SZA

32. “In Da Ghetto” by J. Balvin & Skrillex

33. “Favourite Flavour” by The Lottery Winners

34. “Give Me Your Love” by Girl Ray

35. “Rouge” by BAD CHILD

36. “Bouncin’” by Tinashe

37. “STORY” by NF

38. “What D’You Know About Me?” by Jungle

39. “breathe again” by Joy Oladokun

40. “Fingers Crossed” by Trevor Daniel feat. Julia Michaels

41. “Like That (A Short Story)” by JP Saxe

42. “Stop Making Stupid People Famous” by Our Lady Peace feat. Pussy Riot

43. “We Don’t Talk Enough” by Quinn XCII & Alexander 23

44. “Don’t Wait Up” by Shakira

45. “Not Mad Anymore” by Ashe

46. “Body” by Elderbrook

47. “JOSIE” by Liza Owen

48. “Alter Ego” by Duke Dumont & Channel Tres

49. “Run It” by DJ Snake, Rick Ross, & Rich Brian

50. “Sweatshirt” by Dreamer Boy

51. “Play” by Alewya

52. “Bad Habits” by Ed Sheeran

53. “25” by Alix Page

54. “traitor” by Olivia Rodrigo

55. “Cold Heart (PNAU Remix)” by Elton John & Dua Lipa

56. “Call on Me” by RAYE

57. “Thinking of You” by Macy Gray and the California Jet Club

58. “Burning Fire” by Camino

59. “Neo Surf” by GENER8ION & 070 Shake

60. “Endless” by Rence

61. “Start Again” by The Lottery Winners feat. Frank Turner

62. “Addict of Magic” by Picture This

63. “FYE FYE” by Tobe Nwigwe feat. Fat Nwigwe

64. “Chemical (Chloé Caillet Remix)” by Beck

65. “Angel Baby” by Troye Sivan

66. “Free” by Oh Wonder

67. “The Walls Are Way Too Thin” by Holly Humberstone

68. “Smokin’ Out the Window” by Silk Sonic

69. “Hot N Heavy” by Jessie Ware

70. “Backroom Door” by Bruno Martini & Johnny Franco

71. “Feeling So Down” by flora cash

72. “Lights Up” by Flight Facilities & Channel Tres

73. “No One Else” by Babet

74. “Inner Light” by Elderbrook feat. Bob Moses

75. “black hole” by fiedlerski feat. ANNABELLE & V.I.C.


77. “Don’t Judge Me” by FKA twigs, Headie One, & Fred again..

78. “ARE YOU LETTING GO?” by Dreamer Boy & BENEE

79. “Give Me a Reason” by Boy Harsher

80. “Can’t Come to the Phone” by Martin Jensen, Amber Van Day, & N.F.I

81. “MIA” by BERWYN

82. “backseat” by Sfven

83. “Slow Dance” by Yoshi Flower

84. “growing up” by fiedlerski feat. remme & Alicja

85. “Schatze” by Ohtis & Stef Chura


87. “Competition” by Amber Mark

88. “People Happy” by KLP & Stace Cadet

89. “Fallin’” by AVAION & Why So Sad

90. “The Darkness That You Fear” by The Chemical Brothers

91. “Peaches” by Justin Bieber feat. Daniel Caesar & Giveon

92. “Home” by Esty

93. “Impress You” by Brooke Combe

94. “Spit of You” by Sam Fender

95. “Questions” by Middle Kids

96. “Closure” by Sarcastic Sounds, BIRDY, & Mishaal

97. “Pinnacle” by Clyde Guevara

98. “Shadows” by Bonobo feat. Jordan Rakei

99. “So Great” by DJ Semtex feat. Boy Nash

100. “Tears in the Club” by FKA twigs feat. The Weeknd

101. “Saturday” by Twenty One Pilots


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