You wouldn’t think it’s possible, but Ed Sheeran has in fact managed to break the UK’s charting system. It’s through no fault of his own of course but looking at the UK singles charts right now is quite amusing.
Mr Sheeran dropped his third album on the 3rd March this year, and whether you’re a fan of his music or not, you can’t deny he’s a genuine guy that deserves every bit of success he gets. However, it seems our singles charting system can’t handle it. You may or may not be aware that since 2014, streaming services such as Spotify make a contribution towards charting systems – to be precise, 150 plays on a song counts as one sale. With someone as huge as Ed Sheeran, you can imagine this is a mess just waiting to happen.
The amount of people listening to the 26-year-old musician’s newest album means that every single one of those tracks has landed itself a top 20 charting position. Quite unfair, considering only two songs from the album – Shape of You and Castle on the Hill – are officially singles. Many people, inclding Ed himself, are calling for the UK charts system to be rethought to stop these types of situations continuing. Every time a massively well known musician or band makes a release, this will no doubt happen again. When you think about it, using streams as “sales” isn’t a smart move, as people never stop listening to music. These songs will never give way to new charting artists if continued like this.
Do you think that making amends to the charting system is needed? Or do you think we should just leave it and accept it? Personally, I don’t think a song should chart as a single unless it actually is an official single. Makes much more sense.