Adele’s latest album ’30’ and The Weeknd’s ‘After Hours‘ single ‘Save Your Tears’ were the world’s best-selling records of 2021.

READ MORE: What’s causing the vinyl delay? “Adele is not the problem”, say music industry insiders

Music industry body the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) has revealed that Adele’s 2021 album sold more than five million copies in two months. It’s also the biggest-selling record on vinyl and CD.

The Weeknd’s ‘Save Your Tears, which was released in 2020, topped the charts in 18 countries and was streamed 2.15billion times. In 2020, The Weekend also had the biggest record of the year with his other ‘After Hours’ single ‘Blinding Lights’.

You can see the rankings below.

Top 10 global singles 2021:

01 The Weeknd – ‘Save Your Tears’ (2.15billion streams)
02 The Kid LAROI, Justin Bieber – ‘ STAY’ (2.07billion streams)
03 Dua Lipa – ‘Levitating’ (1.88billion streams)
04 BTS – ‘Butter’ (1.76billion streams)
05 Olivia Rodrigo – ‘drivers license’ (1.73billion streams)
06 Justin Bieber (ft. Daniel Caesar, Giveon) – ‘Peaches’ (1.72billion streams)
07 The Weeknd – ‘Blinding Lights’ (1.61billion streams)
08 Olivia Rodrigo – ‘good 4 u’ (1.61billion streams)
09 Lil Nas X – ‘MONTERO (Call Me By Your Name)’ (1.60billion streams)
10 Ed Sheeran – ‘Bad Habits’ (1.57billion streams)

Top 10 global albums 2021:

01. Adele – ’30’
02. Olivia Rodrigo – ‘Sour’
03. Justin Bieber – ‘Justice’
04. Ed Sheeran – ‘=’
05. The Weeknd – ‘After Hours’
06. Dua Lipa – ‘Future Nostalgia’
07. The Kid LAROI – F Love (Mix Tape)
08. ABBA – ‘Voyage’
09. Morgan Wallen – ‘Dangerous: The Double Album’
10. Doja Cat – ‘Planet Her’

The three album charts compiled by the IFPI (overall sales, physical sales and vinyl) “reflect the truly global nature of the industry today,” chief executive Frances Moore told the BBC, “with albums by artists from the UK, US, South Korea, Australia, Japan, Canada and Sweden all making appearances”.

Adele’s dominance over all three, she added, “speaks to her unique song-writing talent, her iconic voice and unrelenting global popularity”.

The news follows the recent revelation that UK record sales in 2021 were the highest they’ve been in 30 years, despite widely publicised issues with backlogs and delays.

According to figures released by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) last December, more than five million vinyl records were sold this year, an eight per cent increase on 2020. It marked the 14th year in a row that the format has increased sales, with vinyl records making up 23 per cent of all albums sold in 2021.

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