2018's biggest streaming hits by year of release, including Bohemian Rhapsody, The Kooks and Mariah Carey

It's not just brand-new songs that are being streamed in their millions...

Streaming continues to rise in the UK with audio streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music and Deezer seeing over 90 billion plays in the UK last year - an increase of 34% on 2017’s total. The UK now regularly sees over 2 billion streams per week, spanning brand new hits and lots of classics.

Last year’s releases make up just under a quarter of the total, while 2017 tracks like This Is Me from the Greatest Showman and Perfect by Ed Sheeran accounted for 20% of the total streams last year.

Unsurprisingly, Christmas songs have huge appeal to the streaming masses; half of the most played songs this decade from between 1940-present were festive songs including Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You, released in 1994 and racking up 39m listens last year – the most of any Christmas song.

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57% of music streaming last year came from tracks released before 2016. More than 500 songs released in this time picked up over 10m plays. Bruno Mars’ 2016 single Finesse clocked up the most listens of any song from 2010-2016 with 54.7m plays, thanks to a remix featuring rapper Cardi B released in January 2018.

Meanwhile, tracks like Naive by The Kooks - ranked the 2006's most-streamed single for a third year now - show signs of being potential cult classics.

Other singles that hold the title as the most streamed song of their year of release are TLC's No Scrubs (1999), Africa by Toto (1982) and Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit (1991).

Meanwhile, film soundtracks are proving more popular than ever with rock legends Queen in particular feeling the benefits. Following the release of their biopic Bohemian Rhapsody the band saw a huge lift in streams, with nine of the band's songs reaching the Top 1000 in 2018 compared to just four in 2017.

Don’t Stop Me Now was the most streamed single released in 1978 with 25.4 million listens, and Bohemian Rhapsody was the most played track from the 1970s overall with 29.8m.

Mr Brightside by The Killers continues to be the biggest track released in the 2000s, placing at Number 75 overall. The 2003 single peaked at Number 10 on the Official Singles Chart following its re-release in 2004, but thanks to its cult status still regularly dips in and out of the Singles Chart Top 100.

Check out the complete list of the most streamed songs of 2018 by year of release, compiled by the BPI using Official Charts Company data:

YEAR TITLE ARTIST
2018 GOD'S PLAN DRAKE
2017 THIS IS ME KEALA SETTLE/GREATEST SHOWMAN CAST
2016 FINESSE BRUNO MARS
2015 CHEAP THRILLS SIA
2014 THINKING OUT LOUD ED SHEERAN
2013 BUDAPEST GEORGE EZRA
2012 LET HER GO PASSENGER
2011 CAN'T HOLD US MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS
2010 PUMPED UP KICKS FOSTER THE PEOPLE
2009 PARTY IN THE USA MILEY CYRUS
2008 I'M YOURS JASON MRAZ
2007 FLUORESCENT ADOLESCENT ARCTIC MONKEYS
2006 NAIVE THE KOOKS
2005 GOLD DIGGER KANYE WEST FT JAMIE FOXX
2004 LET ME LOVE YOU MARIO
2003 MR BRIGHTSIDE THE KILLERS
2002 LOSE YOURSELF EMINEM
2001 HOW YOU REMIND ME NICKELBACK
2000 IN THE END LINKIN PARK
1999 NO SCRUBS TLC
1998 IRIS GOO GOO DOLLS
1997 BITTERSWEET SYMPHONY THE VERVE
1996 NO DIGGITY BLACKSTREET FT DR DRE
1995 WONDERWALL OASIS
1994 ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS YOU MARIAH CAREY
1993 LINGER THE CRANBERRIES
1992 CREEP RADIOHEAD
1991 SMELLS LIKE TEEN SPIRIT NIRVANA
1990 THUNDERSTRUCK AC/DC
1989 WATERFALL THE STONE ROSES
1988 FAST CAR TRACY CHAPMAN
1987 FAIRYTALE OF NEW YORK THE POGUES FT KIRSTY MACCOLL
1986 DRIVING HOME FOR CHRISTMAS CHRIS REA
1985 MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE SHAKIN' STEVENS
1984 LAST CHRISTMAS WHAM!
1983 SWEET DREAMS (ARE MADE OF THIS) EURYTHMICS
1982 AFRICA TOTO
1981 DON'T STOP BELIEVIN' JOURNEY
1980 YOU MAKE MY DREAMS DARYL HALL & JOHN OATES
1979 WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS TIME PAUL MCCARTNEY
1978 DON'T STOP ME NOW QUEEN
1977 MR BLUE SKY ELO
1976 GO YOUR OWN WAY FLEETWOOD MAC
1975 BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY QUEEN
1974 SWEET HOME ALABAMA LYNYRD SKYNYRD
1973 STEP INTO CHRISTMAS ELTON JOHN
1972 SUPERSTITION STEVIE WONDER
1971 TAKE ME HOME COUNTRY ROADS JOHN DENVER
1970 YOUR SONG ELTON JOHN
1969 I WANT YOU BACK THE JACKSON 5
1968 (SITTIN' ON) THE DOCK OF THE BAY OTIS REDDING
1967 AIN'T NO MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH MARVIN GAYE & TAMMI TERRELL
1966 PAINT IT BLACK THE ROLLING STONES
1965 I CAN'T HELP MYSELF THE FOUR TOPS
1964 MY GIRL THE TEMPTATIONS
1963 IT'S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME ANDY WILLIAMS
1962 BRING IT ON HOME TO ME SAM COOKE
1961 STAND BY ME BEN E KING
1960 AT LAST ETTA JAMES

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