A week-long build-up of events and activities celebrating the UK’s love of the album, supported by BBC Music and with backing across the music community, has been announced for 13 October 2018. Artists will be involved, leading the national conversation around the format as it evolves, marking the 70th anniversary of the album.
All sectors of the British music community have come together with BBC Music to proudly announce a new annual event – the first-ever National Album Day on Saturday, 13th October 2018.
National Album Day will mark the culmination of a week-long series of events and activity around the country that will celebrate all aspects of the UK’s love of the album – new releases and classic recordings across all genres of music. It will also pay tribute to the sleeve artwork that contributes to the album’s iconic appeal. This inaugural event comes in a year that coincides with the 70th anniversary of the album.
Planned activity will include dedicated BBC Music programming and editorial support; retail events and artist personal appearances; Classic Album Sundays LP playbacks and artist interviews/fan Q&As; and online listening parties. A social media campaign (@AlbumDayUK/#NationalAlbumDay) will invite people to nominate and share the album that has most inspired them; and at 3.33pm on 13th October – National Album Day – fans, stores, radio stations and public spaces will be invited to play their favourite album in full.
Leading the ‘national conversation’ will be the artists and producers who give expression to the album as a conceptual body of work, and help to define the format’s purpose and meaning. Numerous musicians are giving National Album Day their backing, while others will be confirmed in due course.
National Album Day is delighted to announce Paloma Faith – Sony Music/RCA recording artist, as one of its first artist ambassadors, who says: “I vividly remember being excited by so many classic albums as I was growing up, like Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On, Dylan’s Freewheelin’, and Erykah Badu’s Mama’s Gun, although, if I had to pick one, the album that most inspired me was Tracy Chapman’s self-titled debut. It featured the incredibly powerful Why? – a song that has become a real anthem for me not least as it was the first to bring home the emotional power of lyrics. The way we engage with music may be changing, but for me the album remains the ultimate expression of the songwriter’s craft.”
National Album Day is announced at a time when demand for albums remains strong, underlining the format’s cultural and commercial significance and its enduring appeal at the heart of British recorded music. In 2017 135m albums, or their equivalent, were either purchased, downloaded or streamed, a rise of 9.5 per cent on the previous year. 4.1m of these were on vinyl – the highest level since the start of the 1990’s. The BPI estimates that a staggering 5 billion albums have been sold in the UK since the format’s advent in 1948.
“The album is, for me, not only a soundtrack to a moment of your life, but also a chance to take a break from it.” – Aurora
More information on how to participate is available here.