2018 has seen some major chart milestones achieved by the likes of Little Mix, Ariana Grande and Drake. OfficialCharts.com takes a look back at the year in music and gives honouree nods as they reveal the chart stars and chart achievements of 2018.
Ariana Grande: All Time Most Streams in a week
Ariana Grande surprise-released thank u, next in November and became one of only four tracks to debut at Number 1 on the Official Singles Chart in 2018. It wasn’t until its fifth week at the top of the charts that it notched up a massive 14.9 million streams in a week, aided by 7.9 million from its music video. It’s the highest number of plays in a week in UK chart history, overtaking Ed Sheeran’s Shape of You, which racked up 14.2 million streams in a single week in 2017.
Take That: Fastest Selling Artist Album of the Year
The trio's reimagined greatest hits charged to the top of the charts with 106,000 combined sales to claim the highest opening week figure for an artist album in 2018. It’s Take That’s eighth Number 1 album and their first since 2014's III.
Take That told OfficialCharts.com “We want to say a massive thank you to all our fans for making Odyssey an Official Albums Chart Number 1.”
Jess Glynne: Most Number 1 singles of a British Solo Female
At the start of 2018, Jess Glynne was tying with Cheryl for the most Number 1 singles by a British female soloist but she’s well and truly raced ahead this year. In March, she topped the chart with Rudimental, Macklemore and Dan Caplen on These Days and then in June she hit the top spot with I’ll Be There, the first release from her second album, Always In Between, which also topped the charts. Jess now has seven UK Number 1 singles.
Jess told OfficialCharts.com: "I’m speechless! I find it incredibly insane that I hold a record for the most Number 1s for a British female. It’s insane to think I’ve achieved that so early in my career. It’s not just me on all those songs – I have to thank everybody I’ve collaborated with.”
George Ezra: Song of The Summer
It was one of the hottest summers on record in Britain and it was soundtracked by singer-songwriter George Ezra, who scored the song of the summer with his track Shotgun. Data tracking UK sales and streams from 1st June to 31st August revealed that George’s sun-soaked singalong was the biggest track of the season. It was George’s first UK chart topping single reaching the coveted Number 1 in July.
George told OfficialCharts.com: "Thank you very much to all of you that have come and seen us live, played the song, shared it with your friends and family and sung along with us. It's been an amazing summer."
Dave & Fredo: Only British acts to debut at Number 1 in 2018
In October, British rapper Dave debuted at the top of the Official Singles Chart with the Fredo featuring track Funky Friday; one of only four tracks to do so in 2018 and the only one from British acts. A significant result for the British rap genre as highlighted by SB.TV founder Jamal Edwards who told OfficialCharts.com: "I feel very fortunate to be alive and living in this age where stuff like this is happening. It's a very monumental time for British music and this is definitely one of these moments that we will remember for a very long time. I've seen Dave & Fredo's rise from the ground up and I feel like there's so much more to come, very exciting indeed. Making history for real!"
Dave told OfficialCharts.com: “I’m speechless right now. I just want to say thank you to everyone that’s helped us get this Number 1. I can’t even explain to you how grateful I am."
Drake: Most Top 40 UK singles in 2018
It’s been another massive year for Drake on the Official Charts. He started 2018 with the straight-to-Number 1 single God’s Plan in February, scored a second Number 1 in April with Nice For What and a third in July with In My Feelings; more Number 1 singles than any other act this year. On top of that he’s had another five Top 40 hits as lead artist on the Official Singles Chart taking his total to 8. That’s not to mention he’s also guested on a further five hits including Bad Bunny’s MIA and French Montana’s No Stylist.
Little Mix: First girl band to score five Top 5 studio albums in the UK
With the release of their fifth studio album, LM5, Little Mix cemented their status in girl band history as the first girl group to have five Top 5 studio albums on the Official Albums Chart. LM5 debuted at 3 in November and sees them achieving a feat yet to be matched by Spice Girls, All Saints, Destiny’s Child or Girls Aloud. They’ve also seen their fourth album Glory Days become their most successful to date, scoring over one million combined sales.
Arctic Monkeys: Fastest-selling vinyl album for 25 years
In May 2018, Sheffield’s Arctic Monkeys not only boasted a sixth consecutive chart topping album, but also claimed the fastest-selling vinyl album of the last quarter of a century. Available on black, silver and gold LP variants, the album was the fastest-selling vinyl of the last 25 years, shifting 24,500 copies in just seven days.
The Greatest Showman – Motion Picture Cast Recording: Most weeks at Number 1 on the Album Chart
Spending nearly half of the year at Number 1 on the Albums Chart, The Greatest Showman Motion Picture Cast Recording has occupied the top spot no less than 23 weeks of 2018^. The smash hit musical starring Hugh Jackman, Zac Efron, Michelle Williams and a whole host of talented actors and performers first hit the top spot in January and has held off fierce competition from the likes of Justin Timberlake, Snow Patrol, Kanye West and Camila Cabello. The cast recording has not left the Top 5 during the entirety of 2018.
[^Based on charts up to and including week 51]
The 1975: Biggest Selling Album on cassette
In Dec 2018, The 1975’s third album landed in the Number 1 spot of the Official Album Chart securing them a third consecutive Number 1. The 1975 are the first British band since Arctic Monkeys to debut at Number 1 with their first three albums. Their current album A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships has the honour of being the biggest selling album on cassette of the year.*
Celebrating the news with OfficialCharts.com, the band said:
“Thank you for making A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships the Number 1 album in the UK - we appreciate it so much. Thank you.”
[*Based on sales up to and including week 51]
Kylie Minogue: Celebrates 30 years in Music with another Number 1 album
2018 has been a Golden year for Kylie Minogue, not only did she turn 50 but she also celebrated 30 years of Official Charts hits by scoring her sixth Number 1 album, Golden, in April. Her debut album, Kylie, topped the chart in 1988 and she’s racked up more than 50 Top 40 hits and 23 Top 40 albums. She recently announced that she’ll be playing the ‘Legends Slot’ at next year’s Glastonbury Festival.
Kylie told OfficialCharts.com in April: “I don’t know where to start… Thank you to everybody who has been involved in getting Golden to Number 1. I am so overwhelmed, happy, proud, emotional and very, very thankful and grateful. Much love and many, many, many thanks.”
Sheku - : Youngest Cellist to score at Top 20 Album
At just 18 years of age, Sheku became the youngest cellist to break into the Official Albums Chart Top 20 with his debut album Inspiration. The teenage cellist, who was crowned BBC Young Musician in 2016, recorded with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and debuted at 18 on the Official Albums Chart in February and at Number 1 on the Classical Albums Chart.
Celebrating the news, Sheku told OfficialCharts.com: "As a classical cellist, I can’t quite believe I’ve made the Top 20 in the Official Albums Chart with my first ever album!
"It has been an amazing experience and I’m very grateful to everyone who’s supported me. I hope the pieces on this album inspire others the way they’ve inspired me."