That’s according to UK Music’s Measuring Music 2015 report, an annual economic study of the UK music industry’s contribution to the national economy.
Musicians, composers, songwriters and lyricists alone contributed £1.9bn to the economy wth 117,000 full time jobs provided within the music industry during the period.
Music exports accounted for around £2.1bn of the total GVA and export growth in the recorded sector was 17% in 2014, which UK Music says is a reflection of the UK’s status as the world’s second largest source of repertoire.
Live music tourism contributed £3.1bn to the UK economy last year with live music sector seeing the biggest area of growth in both GVA and employment in 2014.
The report also reveals that one in seven of all artist albums sold across the globe were by British artists, whilst five of the top ten selling albums were by UK acts.
Commenting on the sector’s performance, UK Music CEO, Jo Dipple said: “2014 proved to be another hugely successful year for British music. The sector outperformed the rest of the UK economy and grew by 5% year-on-year. Music contributed a staggering £4.1bn to the UK economy, and exports generated £2.1bn. The UK’s cultural footprint and soft power were driven by the global success of artists like Sam Smith, Ed Sheeran, Pink Floyd, Ellie Goulding, One Direction and Calvin Harris.
“Now in its third year, Measuring Music helps show the true weight of our commercial music sector and the scale of its global reach and impact. It also helps us articulate just how culturally important the British music industry and the 117,000 people it employs are to our nation. UK Music will continue to work with Government for the best possible future for every part of our varied and stunningly diverse industry.”
UK Music chairman, Andy Heath said: “The sector is growing again, and that is thanks to the recognition and adoption of new technology and the continued power of a vibrant live music sector. We continue to lead the world in song writing, composing, production, recordings and live performances. The UK is also the second largest provider of musical repertoire in the world thanks to our unique ecosystem that helps build and nurture both creative and commercial opportunities across all areas of the industry.”
Culture Secretary, John Whittingdale MP, said: “Our artists continue to dominate the global charts – and shows from the Royal Ballet and Rod Stewart to the LSO and Status Quo, sell out concerts across the globe. In fact, many people around the world first learn about this country through one of our bands. Our music industry alone contributes more than £4 billion a year to the UK economy. It creates wealth and jobs as well as providing entertainment to millions.
“UK Music’s Measuring Music is extremely useful in describing the economic impact of commercial music. Its publication coincides with a roundtable meeting that I am hosting with a wide range of representatives from across the music industry to discuss how we can ensure that British music remains at the top of the charts. As Secretary of State, I want to do all I can to ensure that British music continues to thrive.”