Madonna says she was ‘shocked’ that Radio 1 didn’t playlist new single Living For Love

Singer says decision is ‘so discriminatory and unfair’

Madonna has criticized Radio 1 for not playlisting her current single Living For Love, accusing the station of ageism.

Radio 1 have consistently denied refusing to playlist artists on the grounds of age, but Madonna has said the decision not to give airtime to Living For Love is “discriminatory”.

Madonna told The Sun: “I was shocked. I thought ‘Wait a second. Shouldn’t it be to do with whether you wrote a good catchy pop song?’ I thought it was so discriminatory and unfair.”

The singer went on to say that ageism remains a taboo subject in music, commenting: “We’ve made so many advances in other areas – civil rights, gay rights – but ageism is still an area that’s taboo and not talked about or dealt with.”

She claimed that Radio 1 have made it “very hard” for singers over 30 to get their music heard. Madonna said: “My manager told me that, if you’re not in your twenties, it’s hard. She said: ‘You might get your record played in your thirties. There’s a handful of people who do – Pharrell got lucky. But if you’re in your fifties, you can forget it.’ I thought: ‘Really? Is that how it’s broken down?’ I’m so stupid, I didn’t know it was anything to do with my age. I just do my work.”

Radio 1 responded: “Radio 1 does not ever ban artists. Tracks are chosen on musical merit and relevance to our young audience. An artist’s age is never a factor.”

Madonna’s album Rebel Heart is set to be No 1 this weekend. She tours in December. O2 priority tickets are on sale now, with general tickets on sale from Monday (March 16).

Madonna will play:
London O2 (December 1)
Manchester Arena (14)
Birmingham Barclaycard Arena (16)
Glasgow SSE Hydro (20)