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IFPI Global Music Report: Adele, The Weeknd Top the Charts

The music industry is fueled by streaming numbers, radio plays and chart-toppers, but according to the latest from IFPI, the money speaks the loudest.

There are plenty of things to worry about in the world. The health of the music business is not one, as evidenced up and down the 2022 IFPI Global Music Report released Tuesday.

“Representing the recording industry worldwide,” the IFPI — or International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, if you like — relayed astounding growth in the business of recorded music throughout 2021.

These are the key figures to know:

  • $25.9 billion in total revenues
  • 18.5% recorded music market growth
  • 21.9% increase in paid subscription streaming revenues, equivalent to $12.3 billion
  • 523 million year-end 2021 paid subscription users
  • 24.3% bump in total streaming to $16.9 billion — accounting for 65% of total global recorded music revenues
  • 16.1% physical revenue growth
  • 4% performance rights revenue growth

The 27-page report features the IFPI top-10 global recording artists of last year. Here’s your honor roll:

  1. BTS
  2. Taylor Swift
  3. Adele
  4. Drake
  5. Ed Sheeran
  6. The Weeknd
  7. Billie Eilish
  8. Justin Bieber
  9. Seventeen
  10. Olivia Rodrigo

The Weeknd accounted for the top digital single with “Save Your Tears” at 2.15 billion streams. The artist born Abel Tesfaye owns the No. 7 spot on the list with “Blinding Lights”a Billboard Hot 100 history-maker. Second place belongs to The Kid LAROI’s Bieber-boosted summer pop smash “Stay” at 2.07 billion streams.

Here is the full top-10 global digital singles chart for 2021:

  1. The Weeknd, “Save Your Tears”
  2. The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber, “Stay”
  3. Dua Lipa, “Levitating” (1.88 billion streams)
  4. BTS, “Butter” (1.76 billion)
  5. Olivia Rodrigo, “drivers license” (1.73 billion)
  6. Justin Bieber (feat. Daniel Ceasar, Giveon), “Peaches” (1.72 billion)
  7. The Weeknd, “Blinding Lights” (1.61 billion)
  8. Olivia Rodrigo, “good 4 u” (1.61 billion)
  9. Lil Nas X, “MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)” (1.60 billion)
  10. Ed Sheeran, “Bad Habits” (1.57 billion)

The global top-10 album all-format chart is topped by Adele’s 30, her first project since 2015 that racked up 4.68 million global units to also nab the crown on the global top-10 album sales chart for 2021 as well as 862,000 global units for first place among global vinyl albums.

And here is how the full top-10 album all-format chart rounded out for 2021:

  1. Adele, 30
  2. Olivia Rodrigo, SOUR
  3. Justin Bieber, Justice
  4. Ed Sheeran, =
  5. The Weeknd, After Hours
  6. Dua Lipa, Future Nostalgia
  7. The Kid LAROI, F*CK LOVE (mixtape)
  8. ABBA, Voyage
  9. Morgan Wallen, Dangerous: The Double Album
  10. Doja Cat, Planet Her

“Around the world, record companies are engaging at a very local level, to support music cultures and bring on the development of emerging music ecosystems — championing local music and creating the opportunities for it to reach a global audience,” IPFI Chief Executive Frances Moore said at a press conference in London. “As more markets mature, they join with and contribute to the rich, globally interconnected music world.”

“Consequently, today’s music market is the most competitive in memory,” Moore continued. “Fans are enjoying more music than ever and in so many different and new ways. This creates enormous opportunities for artists. Those who choose to partner with a record company, do so to benefit from the support of agile, highly responsive global teams of experts dedicated to helping them achieve creative and commercial success and build their long-term careers.”

Download IFPI’s 2022 “State of the Industry” report by clicking here.

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