Population: 126,880,000 (2015 estimate)
13,378,584 live in Tokyo, Japan’s capital city – the Greater Tokyo area is the most populous metropolitan area in the world
GDP (PPP 2015 estimate) per capita: USD$38,216
Japan is the second biggest music market in the world, with a retail value of USD $2,627.9 million (IFPI 2014). 78% of recorded music sales are physical and 17% are digital. The market share of physical music sales in relation to all sales is the largest in the world.
In 2014, the production value of physical and digital music sales decreased 5% to ca.2,5 billion USD, according to a RIAJ (Recording Industry Association of Japan) 2015 report. The value of vinyl production increased by 66% in 2014, although the total amount of units sold remains small (ca. 400,000 units).
Arguably, one of the main reasons Japan still retains a relatively strong recorded music market is a result of the 2012 Copyright Act that enacted penalties including imprisonment and fines for illegal downloading, uploading and even viewing of copyrighted material.
According to the Oricon 2014 music market report, J-Pop (Japanese pop) is the country’s most popular genre, accounting for 73.2% of total music sales (http://www.musicman.net.com/business/43498.html). Of the remainder, Anime soundtrack account for 9.7%, international music (known as YOGAKU) 8.4%, Jazz and Classical 4.6% and Enka (Japanese traditional/country music) 4.1% of total sales.
When looking at 2014, Japanese music accounted for 84% of all music sales compared to 16% for international artists. Because of cultural reasons – including language barriers – and the fact that international artists seldom perform in Japan, it can be challenging for international artists to connect with Japanese fans.