A new report reveals that UK Music is being listened to more than ever before, and is still growing like mad.
A new report from the record labels’ association BPI show that UK Music is bigger than ever with all formats seeing the fastest growth this millennium across all formats. In 2017 a total of 135.1 million albums were purchased, streamed (in album equivalent streams), or downloaded in the past year. This a 9.5% rise from 2016 and is the UK’s 3rd year of consecutive growth.
Of the top 10 albums sold in the UK in 2017, 8 were created by British artists which considering America’s pop culture influence is massive. The power of UK Music was aided massively by Ed Sheeran whose album Divide blew up on release and became the most streamed, downloaded, and physically purchased album of the year before.
When it came to how people were listening to UK music streaming stole the show once again. BPI’s reports revealed that music streaming accounted for over half of UK music consumption, earning 1.5 billion weekly streams – a new milestone. Streaming rose 51.5% from 2016 and a whopping 1,740% increase in 5 years. Overall UK music was streamed 68.1 billion times.
Chief executive of BPI and the BRIT Awards, Geoff Taylor said: “Demand for music in the UK is growing fast, driven by brilliant British artists such as Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, Rag ‘n’ Bone Man, Little Mix, Stormzy and Dua Lipa and the innovative music industry that supports them.”
Taylor also adds concerns in the current industry, saying: “Whilst the rapid growth of streaming and resilient demand for physical formats gives us confidence for the future, it is important to remember that the music industry still has a long way to go to recover fully. Structural challenges must be overcome if long-term growth is to be sustained.
“First we must continue to fight the ‘Value Gap’, so that all digital platforms pay fairly for their use of music. Second, Government must ensure our musicians are able to tour freely even after we leave the EU. Finally, we should make the UK the best place to invest in new content by forging an online environment that is safe for consumers and where illegal sites cannot flourish. If we do this, the future for British music, which is already one of our leading exports, will be very bright.”