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SYCO ACT SCORE HIGHEST ENTRY FOR BRITISH GROUP IN US CHART HISTORY
One Direction storm US
TALENT n BY PAUL WILLIAMS
Sony is celebrating a historic achievement in the notoriously tough US market – as One Direction triumph across the Pond.
The group’s Syco/Columbiaissued album Up All Night was in an extremely close battle with Adele’s XL/Columbia album 21 to top the Billboard 200 chart as Music Week went to press – with indications pointing to a narrow victory for the boy band.
No other British group in history has debuted inside the top five of the US albums chart with their first release. The previous highest entry for a UK group with a debut was achieved by the Spice Girls when their Virgin-issued Spice arrived in sixth place in February 1997.
However, in 2008 Leona Lewis became the first UK solo artist to enter the Billboard 200 at No.1 with a debut - a feat matched by fellow Syco act Susan Boyle in 2009.
Sony UK international vice president Dave Shack told Music Week: “It’s always been our ambition to put a marker down that The X Factor can produce an act that can compete in possibly the most difficult market in the world. With One Direction we’ve shown that with the quality of the record, the hard work of the guys and the social networking strategy you can do that.”
The group’s album was heading towards first-week US sales of between 160,000 and 170,000 at press time, according to Nielsen SoundScan data. An intensive Stateside campaign has included a big Twitter push and a tour support slot with children’s TV channel Nickelodeon’s own boy band Big Time Rush. One Direction mania is due to continue with an appearance on Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards on March 31 and a performance on NBC’s Saturday Night Live on April 7 – while the group are even set to have their own show on Nickelodeon.
Last month, One Direction delivered the most successful debut single by a British act on the US Hot 100 since
What Makes You Beautiful charting at No.28.
“The exciting thing for me is that even before we started at radio we were building a groundswell,” noted Shack. “It’s been about establishing One Direction, rather than breaking an individual song.”
UK artists’ share of the North American market reached a new century high last year, according to BPI research. The UK accounted for 11.7% of the US and 16.2% of the Canadian albums markets in 2011.
That success has continued into 2012 with Adele’s 21, the US’s biggest album of the year so far, while there have also been chart breakthroughs for The
Wanted, Jessie J and
GALBRAITH BUYS AEG OUT OF KILI
THE FOUNDER of live music promoter Kilimanjaro, Stuart Galbraith, has bought back AEG’s share in the company.
Kilimanjaro Live was created in 2008 as a joint venture between former Live Nation MD Galbraith and AEG. The company handles festivals including Sonisphere and Wakestock, as well as high-profile gigs throughout the year.
“We’ve finished restructuring Kili,” Galbraith confirmed to Music Week. “I’ve bought back the shareholding so I now own 100% of Kilimanjaro Group. We’re still closely linked with AEG, and still working on projects together going forward.“
Upcoming Kilimanjaro gigs include Red Hot Chili Peppers at Knebworth Park and the Sunderland Stadium Of Light in June, as well as live dates from Rizzle Kicks, Ed Sheeran, Andrea Bocelli and Example.
“We’re in exactly the same offices and there’s a transition period through to the end of September, so there will be no fast changes,” added Galbraith.
Power balance tips away from High Street as online dominates 2011
Physical stores accounted for under 50% of music sales by value last year for the first time in history – as e-tailers and download services combined to dominate the market.
According to new figures from the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), the overall UK music purchase revenue share of bricks and mortar stores stood at 48.6% in 2011, down 6.2% year-onyear. The figures do not including merchandise, brand extensions or streaming sites. Online and mobile delivery accounted for 31% of the total music market’s value, leaving
The High Street is playing second fiddle
17.6% for online home delivery services.
ERA used the figures to support calls for more alluring physical product from record labels. Director general Kim Bayley said: “The real innovation gap is in the physical market where our members buy finished product from film and music and games companies. We will continue to lobby them strongly to innovate.”
The data is contained in ERA’s new Yearbook, which collates and analyses data from across entertainment markets pooled from The Official Charts Company, GfK Chart-Track and
IHS Screen Digest.
It shows the UK games market grew to total sales of £1,926m in 2011 - well ahead of video on £1,802m and music on £1,066m. Overall UK value of all three fell by 3.3% to £4,795m.
Games accounted for 40.2% of the entertainment market, compared with video at 37.6% and music at 22.2%.