my friend and i are starting a podcast and want to put artists songs in it, would we have to pay the artist if we aren't making any money from it?
I think so...

you know, people are going to hear it, right?
You like it
Depends which country you're in. I don't know about England's copyright laws but if they're more sane than the US ones then it should be legal if you don't profit.
You have to pay. Trust me.

I was gonna put music on mine, but after speaking to local radio stations it seems it costs quite a bit. But then my mate decided he didn't really care about much to do with me anymore, so it kinda stopped dead.
Okay, lots of conflicting and downright wrong information so far .

Do some research, our equivalent of the US "fair use" policy is called "fair dealing". IANAL so I won't try to explain it, but this website should be useful, particularly the Podcast Legal Guide.