The IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry), an organization that represents the global music industry’s needs and wants, has released its annual report of the biggest names in the business during the prior year, and the latest winner is the Korean band BTS!
The unique award is calculated according to an artist’s or group’s worldwide performance across digital and physical music formats during the year, from streams to vinyl, and covers their entire body of work. The award was announced at the culmination of the IFPI Global Artist Chart, which counted down the top 10 best-selling artists of the year globally.
BTS’ win marks their first ever IFPI award, after finishing #2 in 2018’s IFPI Global Artist Chart and #7 in 2019. They become the first Korean act to win the accolade, as well as the first winner to perform primarily in a language other than English.
The award comes after a historic year for BTS (consisting of RM, Jin, SUGA, j-hope, Jimin, V and Jung Kook) who broke record after record with their multiple album releases.
BTS were omnipresent in 2020, providing a welcome escape from the realities of an unprecedented year for music lovers around the world. MAP OF THE SOUL : 7 was released in February 2020 as one of the most pre-ordered albums of all time, and swiftly went to #1 in more than 20 countries. The Japanese-language MAP OF THE SOUL : 7 ~ THE JOURNEY ~ was released in July 2020, passing 500,000 copies within two days of release and becoming the best-selling album by a male foreign artist ever in that market. August brought the release of the all-conquering single Dynamite, the first time BTS recorded a track fully in English, which became their first ever US #1 single and broke records for opening day streams on YouTube and Spotify. BTS closed their incredible year with the release of BE (Deluxe Edition) in November, a response to the Covid-19 pandemic summed up by the lead single Life Goes On, which secured #1s across three continents.
Frances Moore, Chief Executive, IFPI, said: “BTS are a global phenomenon. They have had another outstanding year, releasing three albums, and continually finding creative and engaging ways to share their story with the world. They truly show the power that music has to bring joy and happiness to people the world over.
“We would like to congratulate RM, Jin, SUGA, j-hope, Jimin, V and Jung Kook and we are excited to see what they have in store next.”
Sources: IFPI, photo BTS Official Twitter