Related BBC sites

Page last updated at 10:26 GMT, Thursday, 16 April 2009 11:26 UK
British acts shine in US charts

Sima Kotecha
Newsbeat's US reporter

Coldplay picked up three Grammy Awards at this year's ceremony

What do Leona Lewis, Estelle and Duffy have in common? The obvious answer is they're all female British singers.

But the three of them have also been enjoying success in America, something many British artists struggle to do.

They've each sold over a million records in the States and had albums in the top ten there last year.

And acts from the UK are now generally taking a bigger chunk of the US music sales pie.

In 2008, one in ten albums bought in the States was by a British artist, according to the British Phonographic industry (BPI) which represents the UK music business.

Chairman Tony Wadsworth said: "UK artists are getting better at working the American market.

Leona Lewis
Leona's single Bleeding Love was the most downloaded in the US

"If you do crack America, it has a knock on effect everywhere else in the world.

"It's almost like you have an extra layer of credibility."

But it hasn't always been that way.

In 2000 and 2001, less than two percent of the top 100 albums in America, were from the UK.

April 2002 wasn't a good month for the Brits either.

It was the first time since 1953, that there were no British artists in the US singles charts.

And then a few years ago, Sting's album was the only British one in the US charts.

Some believe it's taken time for many Americans to acquire a taste for music that isn't from their own country.

"I wasn't into that style," argues American music fan Mary Cantrey.

"British music sounds different but Amy Winehouse changed my opinion, she's phenomenal."

With big profile music awards like the Grammys being dominated by British stars, it's almost impossible for them to go unnoticed.

This year, Adele, Duffy, and Estelle were winners.

Duffy has sold over a million records in the US

Coldplay also made headlines by taking home three awards, including one for best song of the year.

And Leona Lewis has made a name for herself Stateside.

Her track Bleeding Love was the most downloaded single in America last year.

UK acts such as Arctic Monkeys are also enjoying a US fan base.

They've got a video of themselves hanging out with P.Diddy at his mansion on their website.

The good news then is the Brits are continuing to do well in America.

But the question is will it stay that way?

Musical fans have a long history of being fickle.

After all the history of rock n roll is littered with the bones of people who got buried by that dodgy second album or that follow up single that flopped.

Duffy's dream night at the Brits
Thursday, 19 February 2009, 08:06 GMT |  Music
Coldplay return to the studio
Thursday, 2 April 2009, 11:36 GMT |  Music
Kasabian confirmed for London gig
Thursday, 16 April 2009, 07:55 GMT |  Music
Arctic Monkeys finish third album
Wednesday, 15 April 2009, 11:19 GMT |  Music
Jack Penate announces new tour
Wednesday, 15 April 2009, 14:12 GMT |  Music
Big Weekend registration opens
Wednesday, 15 April 2009, 07:53 GMT |  Music
The Enemy: 'Not a band of the people'
Wednesday, 15 April 2009, 10:08 GMT |  Music


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2017 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific