At the top of every year, Shazam uses its data to predict five artists to watch — last year it did pretty well with Masked Wolf and Tai Verdes — and on Tuesday the song-identifying app used a combination of its its “uniquely predictive data and algorithms” as well as some selections from its parent company Apple Music’s global editorial team to pick five “artists to watch” in 2022.
The selections, and the company’s accompanying explanations, are below in full — and check out a playlist with even more predictions here. apple.co/ShazamPredictions2022
Ayra Starr’s rise this year was largely mounted on her breakout track “Bloody Samaritan,” which had its first Shazam in Lagos. It was released as the lead single of the Nigerian singer-songwriter’s debut album 19 & Dangerous, but took on a life of its own as listeners were drawn in by an alluring violin melody that drops into contagious Afropop magic. An undeniable jam, “Bloody Samaritan” was the most Shazamed song by a local female artist in Nigeria this year—an impressive accomplishment considering it came out only in July.
Fans of trio-turned-duo Eslabon Armado probably need no introduction to DannyLux. The rising Mexican American singer is featured on “Jugaste y Sufrí,” which holds the honor of being this year’s most Shazamed regional mexicano track. Though it was released at the end of 2020, TikTok embraced it, helping to rocket songwriter DannyLux to new levels of acclaim. He’s part of a wave of young artists reinventing corridos for a new generation and only stands to reach more listeners in the coming year.
Singer-songwriter Lyn Lapid is no stranger to viral success—her song “Producer Man” helped jump-start her career in 2020. With “In My Mind,” a mellow but soulful anthem for the quiet kids, she struck gold again. It became her most Shazamed song, charting in six countries, including Brazil, Indonesia, and the US. Though this one strikes a slightly different chord from her breakout, it only further highlights the many tools Lapid has in her arsenal, ready to be deployed as she takes on the new year.
Sad Night Dynamite
Mixing up a hypnotic blend of electronica, hip-hop, and Britpop, duo Sad Night Dynamite has a style that’s hard to define but captures the ear no less. Their eponymous debut mixtape, from February, ping-ponged between genres, but it was their latest single “Demon” that seemed to especially resonate. “Demon,” which features South African musician Moonchild Sanelly, is industrial and ominous, earning a spot on the FIFA 22 soundtrack. It also brought the pair their biggest Shazam success, with their all-time daily Shazams peaking soon after its release.
In April, K-pop girl group STAYC released an effervescent ball of bubblegum pop titled “ASAP.” And every day since then, the single has remained on the South Korean Shazam chart. Pulled from the group’s second single album STAYDOM, “ASAP” has powered their rise as they continue to hone their Technicolor melodies and natural pop proficiency.