The UK music industry grew by 2% in 2017 to contribute a record £4.5 billion to the economy, according to a new report by UK Music.
The organisation have published the annual Measuring Music report, which measures the health of the music business each year, collating data about the industry’s contribution to the UK’s GDP.
The report shows a £100 million increase on 2016, with a number of notable success stories. The recorded music sector enjoyed a 9% rise to £700 million, whilst music publishing grew by 7% to £505 million. Live music is also still alive and kicking, with all festivals and music venues contributing a combined £991 million to the UK economy.
Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa, Rag’N’Bone Man, Stormzy, Harry Styles and Depeche Mode were the forerunners of a 7% growth rate in UK music exports, which grew by 7% to £2.6 billion. Within this market, recorded music exports were up 11% to £468m, music publishing exports grew by 11% to £719m and music representation (collecting societies, management and trade bodies) rose by 9% to £348m.
The report also illustrates the positive trends surrounding music industry jobs, which rose by 3% to a new high of 145,815 people. Musicians, composers, songwriters and lyricists also generated £2bn, an increase of 1% on 2016.
UK Music chief executive Michael Dugher welcomed the figures, but delivered a warning about the need to nurture the music industry’s talent pipeline:
“British music brings enjoyment to millions and makes a massive contribution to the UK plc. I’m really proud of the fact that these figures show once again that when it comes to music, we in the UK are very, very good at what we do.
We are a global leader in music and we continue to grow faster than other parts of the British economy and to punch well above our weight.”
Turning to the government for support of the arts and grassroots music, Dugher continued:
“These figures show what can be achieved when we choose to back the British music industry.
“Every child from every background should have the opportunity to access music, to experience its transformative power and to try out a career in the industry if they want to - regardless of whether or not they have access to the Bank of Mum and Dad.
“That’s why we need further government support to help us ensure we produce the next generation of world-leading British talent by backing music in education, protecting grassroots music venues and making sure that creators are properly rewarded for their work. If we do that, we can be even more successful in the future.”