This is the most-played song of the century

The most-played song so far this century has been revealed, with Northern Irish band Snow Patrol taking the crown.

Their ballad, Chasing Cars, was originally released in 2006. The song never made it to number one, but did remain in the charts for three years.

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And the track’s longevity has been proven once again, as it racked up the most radio plays of the 21st century.

Band met at university in Dundee

The band, who met at the University of Dundee, released the song on their fourth studio album, Eyes Open.

Talking about the song’s success, lead singer Gary Lightbody told the BBC, “I'm not sure how that happened.

"It's an emotionally open song and it's a simple song. But it's also unabashedly a love song, and we don't really have any others.

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"The way it unifies an audience is the thing I most cherish about it. It's a beautiful moment every time you play it."

The second most commonly played song on the radio this century is Black Eyed Peas’ I Gotta Feeling, while third place went to Pharrel’s Happy.

Chasing Cars was the 14th best selling single of 2006, and was also the last song to be played on Top of the Pops.

Chasing Cars was written in one night

Lightbody told the BBC that the track was written in a wine-fuelled overnight recording session in their producer, Jacknife Lee’s, garden studio.

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He said that the lyrics came to him in a flow, and that five other songs from Eyes Open were also written that night.

And, as the band were also writing songs for other people during that session, the songwriter revealed that Chasing Cars could have even ended up being sung by somebody else. However, once they had finished it, they decided the song was too good to give to somebody else.

Lightbody was presented with a special award marking the achievement on Tuesday by music licensing body, PPL.

PPL tracks all the music played on radio and television in the UK. This year the body marked its 85th anniversary.

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Peter Leathem, Chief Executive Officer at PPL, said, “Chasing Cars is a song that has become a popular anthem, securing huge success across radio, in public and especially TV.

“Its huge appeal has led to its use in many programmes and especially Grey’s Anatomy.

“We congratulate Snow Patrol for writing and performing a track of such long-lasting appeal.”

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