Indonesian broadcast authority bans Bruno Mars, Ariana Grande, Lil Nas X songs from daytime radio for “obscene” lyrics

The full list contains 42 songs, which are reportedly not allowed to be played on-air before 10pm

The Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) has reportedly banned 42 songs, including tracks by Bruno Mars, Ariana Grande and Lil Nas X, from daytime radio due to their “obscene” lyrics.

The list consists entirely of pop music from the US and UK, and also includes songs by Jay-Z, Cardi B and Avril Lavigne. These songs are reportedly not allowed to be played on-air before 10pm. Find the full list of songs here.

“So, what is in those 42 songs? For example, they contain words of violence and obscenity or allude to sexuality,” Adiyana Slamet, the head of the West Java KPI, told detiknews, per The Jakarta Post.


“This is attributed to Law No. 32 of the Broadcasting Code of Conduct and Standards of Broadcast Programs [P3SPS], which states that radio broadcasting is in the interest of national integrity to build the character and identity of a nation that is faithful and pious.”

According to Kompas, radio stations have also been briefed to censor offending lyrics before the songs are broadcast.

The list of 42 songs marks an increase from 17 Western pop songs that were banned in 2019 from daytime broadcast by the KPI in the province of West Java.

In comparison, this 2021 circular with the list of banned songs was issued by the central KPI, Kompas reported.

While the most recent list remains dominated by Western artists, one song – Max’s ‘Blueberry Eyes’ – features BTS’ Suga. Bruno Mars tops the list with six songs, two of which – ‘Versace On The Floor’ and ‘That’s What I Like’ – were previously banned in 2019.

Ariana Grande, whose song ‘Love Me Harder’ was on the 2019 list, is on this year’s list again alongside recent singles ‘34+35’ and ‘Positions’. Lil Nas X’s ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’ and Cardi B’s ‘Up’ are among the most recent singles to be added to the list.


The list has circulated on Twitter since the announcement, with some users expressing shock at the list and others relieved some of their favourite artists were spared.

One user even compiled the 42 songs into a Spotify playlist for Indonesian users, even warning in jest against “shar[ing] the playlist to your children”.