data sources

It’s that time of year again. Music marketers are bracing for the worst of the Q4 crunch to be over. Mariah Carey’s accountant is browsing speedboat catalogues. And Music Ally is kicking off a new series of end-of-year roundups looking back at 2022.

Every working day in December, we’ll have a new article drawing together some of the big music industry stories and trends that we’ve covered this year. Starting with what we hope is a handy primer on the best sources of data on the music market.

It includes official market-growth stats; surveys of musicians; analyst forecasts; genre deep-dives; youth listening habits; and even Indian brass bands and the answer to the question ‘whatever happened to the key change in pop?’

Read on, and enjoy!

01 The IFPI’s official figures for global recorded music revenues

Published in March, industry body the IFPI’s Global Music Report was the official word on how much money was made by recorded music (so note, that doesn’t include publishing or live) in 2021. Those revenues grew by 18.5% to $25.9bn, the seventh consecutive year of growth, and the highest annual total since the IFPI has been recording this data. Read our story here.

02 Midia Research’s alternative figures for recorded music revenues

Every year, Midia Research puts out its own estimates for global recorded music revenues, published a couple of days before the IFPI’s for maximum needle. This year, Midia claimed that those revenues were actually $28.8bn in 2021 – $2.9bn more than the IFPI. That’s a difference of opinion concerning revenues for independent labels and DIY musicians. Music Ally steered clear of picking a side! Read our story here.

03 Music & Copyright’s publisher market share stats

Another trusted annual source of industry data is Music & Copyright’s analysis of how much the music publishing industry was worth the previous year. Its 2021 figures came out in April, and suggested that the three major publishers slightly increased their market share from 68.5% in 2020 to 70.1% in 2021, with independents’ share falling from 31.6% to 29.9%. Read our story here.

04 Collecting society numbers from CISAC and SCAPR

We’ve covered revenues for labels and for publishers, but how about another aspect of the songwriting side of the industry: collecting societies? The two global bodies representing societies, CISAC and SCAPR, helpfully put their numbers for 2021 out on the same day in October. Both recorded growth in collections for music, although they warned that the hit from Covid-19 was not yet over. Read our story here.

Put all the figures above together, screen out any double-counting, and what do you get? Author and former Spotify chief economist Will Page’s annual ‘Global Value of Music Copyright’ analysis, that’s what! In November, he calculated that the combined value of recorded music and publishing was $39.6bn in 2021, up 18% year-on-year. Read our story here.

06 The ever-swelling size of the music-streaming catalogue

For a long time, one of the most regularly-quoted stats in the music industry was that 60,000 new tracks were uploaded to music streaming services every single day. In 2022, that figure got updated. The bosses of Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group both announced in October that the total was now 100,000 tracks a day. No wonder the big streaming services now have more than 100 million tracks available. Read our story here.

US dollars money

07 Goldman Sachs forecasts for future music revenues

Talking of regularly-quoted figures, no music pitch-deck is complete without a reference to Goldman Sachs’ predictions for a bonanza of music growth in the coming years. In June, it updated its forecasts to claim that recorded, publishing and live combined would be worth $87.6bn in 2022, but that this could rise to $153bn by 2030. It also reckoned there could be 1.26 billion paying music subscribers by 2030. Read our story here.

08 Midia Research offers its own predictions for the future

Not to be left out of some far(ish) future forecasts, Midia Research published its own predictions in July. It reckons the recorded music market will grow by 14.5% to $59.3bn in 2022, but that this could rise to $89.1bn by 2030. We offered this comparison of Midia and Goldman Sachs at the time: “Not quite bull and bear; rather a pair of bulls, one of whom you might be more likely to welcome into your china shop…” Read our story here.

09 The IFPI’s Engaging With Music consumer-trends report

The IFPI’s other annual report focuses on trends in music listening and subscriptions, based on a survey of 44,000 people around the world. 2022’s report found that the average fan spends 20.1 hours a week listening to music, up from 18.4 hours in 2021. Some countries, like India, China and Nigeria, over-index significantly. However, in our comparison of the report with its 2021 edition, we found a couple of things to worry about around paid subscriptions… Read our story here.

10 The UK’s competition regulator digs out new numbers

The Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) is the UK’s competition regulator, and its market study of music streaming ultimately pleased labels (at least publicly) but disappointed campaigners for artists’ rights. Both camps acknowledged that its interim report contained some useful new data on the workings of the industry however. We filleted the report to find the most interesting nuggets. Read our story here.

11 GESAC examines what streaming means for songwriters

Talking of musicians and streaming, there were several studies trying to get to the bottom of this trend. European industry body GESAC’s ‘Study on the place and role of authors and composers in the European music streaming market’ came out in September, and was an excellent primer on the debates around what streaming means for songwriters, based on a mixture of interviews and prior-research reviewing. Read our story here.

12 The IAO canvasses artists’ views on music streaming

Another piece of research focusing on musicians came from the International Artist Organisation (IAO) in September. It was based on a survey of professional artists in six countries, asking for their views on streaming royalties, payout models, label deals and other topics. It found that nearly 70% were ‘very dissatisfied’ with their current streaming earnings. Read our story here.

13 GEMA analyses the streaming economy in Germany

Germany is one of the four biggest recorded-music markets in the world, but collecting society GEMA found a similar tale of unrest among its songwriter members for its September report. 89% of them thought their streaming earnings were ‘inadequate’, with the report also noting a decline in the value of 1,000 music streams in Germany from €10.58 in 2016 to €8.12 now. Read our story here.

spotify loud and clear 2022

14 Spotify has its say with its Loud & Clear data site

You’ll have gathered that streaming services came in for plenty of criticism in 2022. However, Spotify did make the case for its defence with a March update of its Loud & Clear website. It included the latest figures on annual payouts to the music industry $7bn in 2021, with $4.2bn of that going to major labels. There were also new breakdowns of the different tiers of artists, based on the royalties they generated. Read our story.

15 Mid-year recorded music figures from the world’s biggest market

Which market? The US of course! And its labels body the RIAA published figures for the first half of the year in September, giving an insight into 2022’s trends. Recorded music revenues were up by 9.1% year-on-year to $7.69bn, with paid subscriptions up 9.4% to $4.51bn as part of that. The latter continued a trend of deceleration (in percentage terms) since 2017. Read our story (and for extra context, also our piece on research firm Luminate’s mid-year US figures too).

Trapital is the best publication and podcast for exploring the industry trends around hip-hop and related genres. Its 2022 Culture Report came out at the end of October, and noted that while US revenues from hip-hop are still growing, the genre’s market share has been declining. The report explained some of the factors behind that, as well as looking at other current trends. Read our story here.

17 Electronic music’s bounceback from Covid-19 quantified

Sticking with genre data for a moment, the annual IMS Business Report takes the pulse of the electronic music sector, and it had positive news to report in April. It estimated that in 2021, the sector was worth $6bn, a bounceback from $3.4bn in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic (and associated lockdowns) hit clubbing and live events hard. The report broke down these figures, and spotlighted a number of other dance trends. Read our story here.

18 Why Latin America is home to the world’s ‘metal megacities’

The blog of analytics firm Chartmetric is always an insightful read for some of the lesser-reported trends in streaming. We enjoyed its deep-dive into the metal genre in November, noting that “Latin and South American megacities show their Heavy Metal colors, with Sao Paolo, Mexico City, and Santiago at the top” based on average Spotify listeners for metal artists. Read our story here.

19 Ofcom tracks Brits’ streaming and short-video habits

UK communications regulator Ofcom produces regular reports on Brits’ digital habits, and its Media Nations study in August made for very interesting reading. It quantified the shift from radio to streaming: the former’s share of audio time has fallen from 75% to 63% since 2017, while the latter’s has grown from 8% to 20%. It also found that 32% of online UK adults are watching short-form video daily, although that rises to 69% for 15-17 year-olds. Read our story here.

20 Pew Research Center tracks teens’ online video usage

If the yoof of Britain aren’t of interest, how about the young Americans? The Pew Research Center’s August survey of teens and their parents had plenty of useful data. 95% of those teenagers are using YouTube, with TikTok (67%) having recently overtaken Instagram (62%) and Snapchat (59%). Meanwhile, 58% of teens use TikTok on a daily basis, which won’t be news to parents. Read our story here.

india brass bands

21 India’s music industry includes more people than you expect

If you had to guess how many people work in the Indian music industry, chances are your estimate would be way short of 14 million. Yet that’s the figure identified in a September report commissioned by industry body IMI. How so many? This was India’s ‘informal’ music industry, widening out to include independent artists and folk musicians, DJs, sound engineers, music teachers, instrument makers, other “helpers” around the industry, and brass bands. The latter being key: 10.5 million Indian people play in these bands, which are a staple at weddings, election rallies and other social and cultural events. Read our story here.

22 Why has the key change been dying out in western pop music?

Finishing off on a curveball. Had you noticed fewer songs with key changes riding high in the UScharts? Audiomack’s Chris Dalla Riva nobly listened to the full archives of Billboard Hot 100 chart-toppers, and found that while 23% of these tracks between 1958 and 1990 featured key changes, that proportion has plummeted since. Hip-hop’s commercial rise and computer recording may be the key factors. Read our story here.

While you’re here…

– January’s NY:LON Connect conference we co-run with Music Biz has sold out of in-person tickets, but virtual tickets are still available. Check the lineup here!

– The Knowledge is Music Ally’s free weekly newsletter, arriving in your inbox every Friday with news, analysis and marketing tips. Sign up for it here!

– In October we launched a series of five courses to help labels, managers and artists make the most of Amazon Music. The free courses each last 30-45 minutes. Find them here!

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