The BPI has collated some year-end numbers that show the UK's music industry is in good health thanks largely to the Sheeran Effect, with music "consumption" — the purchasing of physical or streaming of virtual albums —up by 9.5 per cent to 135.1 million records last year.
The BBC report on these numbers is forced to use the phrase "Apart from Sheeran," as the oddly popular man in the jumper standing there next to Rita Ora, looking like he doesn't really belong on that side of the camera, tops literally every form of musical chart compiled over the last year, and is the answer to every question posed about the UK music scene.
Sheeran had the most streamed, most physically purchased and most downloaded album of the year for one we'd have to look up to know the name of, plus he topped the vinyl charts with it too. The good news for the non-Sheeran sector of the UK music world is that eight of the top ten best selling albums of 2017 were produced by UK artists, although they may not be getting paid like they used to as half of these "consumption" numbers are from potentially low-paying streams.
BPI exec Geoff Taylor still has a list of three demands to protect his pawns, though, saying: "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." [BPI via BBC]