We continue our roundup of the biggest chart stories of 2018. Here's part one if you missed it!
Movies dominated the chart
There’s no business like showbusiness, and Hollywood certainly did plenty of business in the Official Chart throughout 2018. Motion picture cast recordings were huge news this year, with three topping the chart. Biggest of all was The Greatest Showman’s epic soundtrack, which racked up 22 (non-consecutive) weeks at Number 1 and didn't leave the Top 5 for the whole year. The album’s flagship single, Keala Settle’s This Is Me was also was the most downloaded song of 2018. But it didn’t end there: Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again managed five weeks at the top and A Star is Born notched up two.
Spice Girls return (again)
Possibly the worst kept secret of the year was finally revealed in November when four of the Spice Girls announced a new UK and Ireland tour. Victoria Beckham has had enough of being Posh so she’ll be sitting this one out, but luckily Geri, Mel B, Mel C and Emma are keeping the flag flying.
Kicking off in Dublin, the tour will take in eight cities across 13 dates and acts rumoured to be making a special appearance onstage with the remaining foursome include Katy Perry. Jess Glynne will be supporting the band on all their dates. Speaking of Jess…
Jess and Rita are record breakers
Jess Glynne made a big return in 2018 and subsequently smashed her own record for the most Number 1 singles by a British female solo artist, racking up her seventh chart-topper with I’ll Be There in June. Rita, a previous holder of that very same chart record, got one all to herself when Let You Love Me became her 13th Top 10 single in October – she now has more Top 10s than any other British female solo star. She’s got the most Top 5s too, with nine, a record she shares with… yes, you guessed it: Jess Glynne. Read more on female artists with the most Top 10 singles here.
It’s five years since Beyoncé left us gobsmacked when she dropped her fifth, self-titled, album without so much of a word, and in 2018 she did it again, this time as one half of The Carters, with husband Jay-Z. Their surprise album Everything Is Love dropped with lead single APES**T and a groundbreaking video filmed entirely in famous French museum the Louvre. More surprise releases included Eminem’s Number 1 album Kamikaze, and Ariana Grande casually chucking all-new single thank u, next on streaming services and racing straight to the top and staying there for weeks.
Now That’s What I Call a Milestone!
There are big birthdays, and there are huge birthdays. The iconic Now series hit the century this year, releasing its 100th edition. In a change from the usual format, to celebrate reaching triple digits, Now 100 was both a collection of contemporary hits and a celebration of the biggest songs from Now’s 35-year history. Among the classics included on the second disc were: Spice Girls’ Wannabe, Kylie’s Can’t Get You Out of my Head, Robbie Williams’ Angels, and Bon Jovi’s Livin’ on a Prayer (see the full tracklisting here). Altogether now: “Whooooooooaaaaah! We’re halfway there!” Here’s to the next 100.
Three Lions roared again
You would think the national obsession was Brexit, but thankfully the World Cup came along to remind us that, for England at least, everything stops for football. As the England football team limbered up for their first World cup semi final since 1990, and twenty-two years after the song’s original release, Baddiel, Skinner, and the Lightning Seeds’ optimistic football chant Three Lions returned to Number 1 – its fourth stint at the top. Sadly, England came fourth in the World Cup, but as Frank Skinner said on being told he was back at Number 1: "I must say, as consolation prizes go..."
What were your favourite music moments of 2018? Tell us in the comments below: