Monday, 25 April 2016

Japanese Music Industry Sees 1st Rise in 3 Years

The Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) released its "The Recording Industry in Japan 2016" report for the year 2015 on April 8.

Audio Sales

According to the report, the combined revenue acquired through sales of audio records (CD/analogue disc) and music videos (DVD/Blu-ray Disc) increased by 1% in 2015 compared to the previous year for a total of 301.5 billion yen (about US$2.697 billion). This is the first time the industry has had a positive gain in sales in three years.
Paid digital music distribution rose in sales by 8% compared to 2014, with a total revenue of 47.1 billion yen (US$421.3 million). According the RIAJ, the reason for the increase is because of paid music streaming services, which dominated one-fourth of all of the digital sales. The sales of physical single CDs dropped by 8% for a total of 19 billion yen (US$169.9 million), but the sale of physical album CDs rose by 10% for a total of 9.2 billion yen (US$82.3 million).
13,813 combined single CDs and albums were released in 2015; a record high. In comparison, 10,533 single CDs and albums were released in 2014.

Anime Sales

2015 also saw the release of 550 anime-related CD singles and 472 anime-related albums for a total of 1,022 music releases for the anime industry. This is the largest number of anime-related music releases ever released in a single year. In comparison, 828 releases were made in 2014, while 832 were made in 2013.


Male idol band Arashi won the Artist of the Year award for Japanese artist, while The Beatles won for Western artist. This is the third time Arashi has won the award. Tohoshinki (One Piece theme song artists) won Best Asian Artist.
Arashi's album Japonism also won the Album Award for 2015 in the Japan artist category, and also ranked on top in the industry's Best 5 Album rankings for Japanese artists. Dreams Come True's (One Piece: Episode of Chopper - The Miracle Winter Cherry Blossom) album DREAMS COME TRUE THE BEST! Watashi no Dorikamu also ranked at #5 in the same category.
The Love Live! School idol project album μ's Best Album Best Live! Collection II album was deemed Animation Album of the Year.
In the singles category, AKB48 took the Single of the Year award with their "Boku-tachi wa Tatakawanai" (We Will Not Fight) release. All singles in the Best 5 Singles category for 2015 were AKB48 releases, except number five, which belonged to their rival unit Nogizaka46. Kana Nishino's (Soul Eater) song "Torisetsu" was awarded as Song of the Year by Download, while Leo Ieiri's (Dragon Ball Kai) "Kimi ga Kureta Natsu" (The Summer You Gave Me) song ranked at number one in the "Best 5 Song by Download" category.
The RIAJ does release the yearly report in English, but it has not yet updated with the 2016 report

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