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Is Ed Sheeran the Manchester City of British music? Bear with us on this comparison…

City have won the Premier League in five of the last six seasons, while Sheeran has topped music licensing company PPL’s annual ‘Most Played’ artists chart in five of the last six years.

(Extend that comparison, and Dua Lipa must be the Liverpool of British music: her top spot in PPL’s chart in 2020 being the equivalent of Liverpool’s title win… in 2020! We’re onto something here.)

Anyway, Sheeran’s latest success was revealed when PPL published its latest annual chart today, based on broadcast airplay as well as plays in public performance venues in the UK in 2022.

Dua Lipa took second spot in the rankings, followed by David Guetta, Harry Styles, Elton John, George Ezra, Coldplay, Calvin Harris, Becky Hill and Taylor Swift in that order.

However, Styles took another honour, as his ‘As It Was’ was the most-played song in 2022, beating Lizzo’s ‘About Damn Time’ and Jax Jones / MNEK’s ‘Where Did You Go?’

PPL boss Peter Leathem OBE said that the domestic success of Sheeran and Styles “reflects the financial and cultural importance of British music”.

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