Q3 sales figures put Sheeran in pole position for 2017

Q3 sales figures put Sheeran in pole position for 2017

Ed Sheeran’s Shape of You is set to pass 3 million sales as it retains its No.1 position for the year-to-date, according to the latest Q3 data from the Official Charts Company.

The track has now moved 2.95 million across all formats. Band Aid’s Do They Know It’s Christmas? and Elton John’s Candle In The Wind ’97 are the only other singles to pass 3 million sales, though Sheeran’s figures are powered by streaming.

Nearly three quarters of that total is down to streaming (220m plays), while 26% is digital downloads (761,000). It is the UK’s most streamed song of all time. 

Castle On The Hill, is the third biggest song of the year with 1.7m equivalent units sold; Galway Girl is fourth (1.2m) and his latest single Perfect places is at No.31 (627,000). The charts dominance of individual tracks from ÷ prompted a revamp of the OCC rules earlier this year.

Sheeran is under pressure from Despacito, which has already overtaken Castle On The Hill. The remix by Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee and Justin Bieber has 2m equivalent units sold – 583,000 downloads and 142 million streams. It was the biggest song of the summer, logging 11 weeks at No. 1.

US rapper French Montana takes fifth place with Unforgettable Feat. Swae Lee (1.11m), while Clean Bandit’s Symphony Feat. Zara Larsson is close behind at No. 6 (1.1m).

British acts dominate the Top 40 singles of 2017 so far: the tally is 22 if you include Coldplay’s joint billing on Something Just Like This with The Chainsmokers and Dua Lipa’s co-headline on Scared To Be Lonely with Martin Garrix. 

The year’s biggest debut artist Rag’N’Bone Man scores two entries on the singles rundown. Human (No.7) has moved past 1m equivalent units this year (a total of 1.3m since its release in December 2016). The single Skin is at No. 34. 

Ed Sheeran’s ÷ album is the fastest-selling album by a male artist of all time, featuring more Top 10 singles than any other studio album in history, and has spent more than 30 consecutive weeks in the Top 3. Its 2.2 million combined sales are made up of 1.7m physical and download sales, plus 511,000 streaming equivalent units. Sheeran’s 2014 album X is the third biggest album so far this year (280,000 sales in 2017, total sales 3.1m)

Rag’N’Bone Man’s Human, which was revealed as the fastest-selling male debut album of the decade upon its release in February, is at No.2 with 767,000 sales across all formats. Several other debuts also make the Top 40, including Zara Larsson’s So Good (No.32), J Hus’ Common Sense (No.37) and Dua Lipa’s self-titled album (No.40).

Drake’s ‘playlist’ album More Life is the UK’s fourth biggest record of the year so far (271,000), and Little Mix’s Glory Days is in fifth place (270,000). Stormzy’s Gang Signs & Prayer is No. 6 in the Official Chart year-to-date rundown, ahead of Take That’s Wonderland (No.7).

Meanwhile, Dame Vera Lynn is on course for the biggest female album released in 2017. Released back in March to celebrate her 100th birthday, Lynn became the oldest living artist ever to score a Top 10 album on the Official Albums Chart, and the album has since gone on to secure BPI gold status. But she faces Q4 competition from Taylor Swift, Pink, Kelly Clarkson and Paloma Faith

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