Opponents of this kind of move will point out that 1, YouTube plays of a single song from an album is hardly akin to the experience of buying and listening to a full LP. Previously, on-demand streams did the job. In late , Billboard updated its historic Billboard chart so that it took into account streams for the first time. Seventeen titles, encompassing albums from dozens of music labels and spanning many genres, are included in the inaugural certifications for the newly expanded Album Award. First awarded to LP recordings but expanded to a number of formats over time to include cassette tapes, CDs, digital tracks, digital albums, ringtones, and streams, nearly 30, certifications have been awarded by the RIAA during the last 58 years. Music Business Worldwide. By Tim Ingham.
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Irish musician Hozier has shared a live clip of himself performing his blues-tinged tune "To Be Alone," the fifth track from his self-titled album. Watch it above via his YouTube channel. Directed by Maurice Linnane and shot in Wicklow, Ireland, the video sees Andrew Hozier-Byrne, otherwise known as Hozier, sitting in an open field and finger-picking the song.
It was released on his debut extended play EP and later his self-titled debut album The song was released as his debut single in as a free download. Hozier, a struggling musician at the time of its writing, wrote and recorded the song in the attic of his parents' home in Bray, County Wicklow, Ireland. A mid-tempo soul song, its lyrics use religious terminology to describe a romantic relationship. The song first caught the attention of independent label Rubyworks , where producer Rob Kirwan overdubbed the original demo with live instruments. The music video contributed to the song's widespread popularity. In , the song achieved widespread global popularity, topping the charts in 12 countries and reaching the top 10 in 21 other territories. Aided by music platforms Shazam and Spotify to become a rock radio hit in the US, the song spent 23 consecutive weeks at the top of the Hot Rock Songs chart, tied with Imagine Dragons ' " Radioactive " as the longest-running number-one in its chart-history at the time , later crossing over to the all-genre Billboard Hot , where it peaked at number two in December
It's true that his video for "Take Me to Church" garnered more than , views within the first week of its posting and is reaching well past 10 million views today. And it's also true that this sort of impact may have helped to put Hozier on the map; he was whisked onto radio charts and into the ears and hearts of tastemakers everywhere shortly thereafter. However, I hesitate to give YouTube too much credit in this phenomenal rise to success, as this video is simply the byproduct of something much, much larger. Hozier's music is that of substance. He taps directly into the reality surrounding issues that matter, wraps it up in poignant lyrics and delivers it in the smoothest sonic package you can imagine. Hozier deftly moves from topic to topic in his debut album and casts light on problems, both personal and public, that are universally shared. The single, "Take Me to Church" grapples very directly with gay rights, while "To Be Alone" pleads for an antidote to rape culture.