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Mariah Carey brit billion

BRIT Billion Award revealed with Mariah Carey, Lewis Capaldi, and AJ Tracey among recipients

04 May 2023, 10:17 | Written by Tyler Damara Kelly

The brand new BRIT Billion award from BPI – the voice of independent and major record labels across the UK – highlights the landmark of one billion UK streams.

From the multi-decade-spanning success of global icons ABBA, Coldplay, Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, the impact of contemporary and pioneering rap and hip-hop talent AJ Tracey and Headie One, to the chart-dominating reign of pop artists and singer-songwriters such as Anne-Marie, Ellie Goulding, George Ezra, Lewis Capaldi, RAYE, Rita Ora and Sam Smith, the BRIT Billion award marks their achievement in hitting this significant milestone.

BRIT-nominated singer Anne-Marie has become one of the UK’s most popular artists through her consistent chart success, and recent move into TV, as one of the coaches for BBC One’s The Voice UK, whilst Lewis Capaldi has endeared himself to countless fans since the release of his debut album Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent - the biggest selling UK album of both 2019 and 2020. Of his award, Capaldi says: "Am so buzzing to be one of the first artists ever to be given a "BRIT Billion" award! Never in a million years did I think any of this stuff would happen but now it is I will gladly accept each and every award, you have my address.”

AJ Tracey first hit the UK’s Official Charts in 2017 and since then has enjoyed both critical and commercial acclaim for his music, becoming one of the most streamed rappers in the UK. “It’s a real honour to have been given one of the first ever BRIT Billion awards. I do this all for you guys, so thank you for listening. New album on the way. Stay locked!," he says.

The BRIT Billion award, which, like the existing BRIT Certified scheme and its iconic Platinum, Silver and Gold tiers, is verified using Official Charts data - and represents the first significant upgrade to the certifications programme since April 2018, when it was rebranded from the BPI Awards to the BRIT Certified Awards. BRIT Billion also marks 50 years of the BPI and the 50th anniversary of the certifications programme, which was created by the BPI in 1973.

This will be the first time in its five-decade history that the certifications scheme officially recognises an artist’s combined success across multiple projects. The One Billion career total will include tracks an artist has appeared on either as the principal performer or as a featured artist, as credited by the Official Charts.

The introduction of BRIT Billion reflects the extent to which streaming has transformed the music landscape for artists and fans alike over the past decade – more than 85% of the UK’s recorded music consumption now takes place through streaming, and in 2022 there were a record 160 billion audio streams in the UK in total. Many artists now measure success in the tens and hundreds of millions of streams each year in the UK alone, but a growing number are also surpassing the billion threshold, creating the need for a prestigious new award to mark and celebrate their outstanding achievement.

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