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Sam Smith is best-selling British artist in America

Sam Smith has been named the best-selling British artist in America in 2014, ahead of boyband One Direction.

New figures released by the British Phonographic Institute (BPI) show one in eight albums bought in the U.S. in 2014 were recorded by U.K. stars, and Smith's Grammy Award-winning In the Lonely Hour was named the highest-selling offering by a British artist.

Smith's feat placed him ahead of Britain's other big export, One Direction, who came in second with their album Four, while other notable mentions include Ed Sheeran and Coldplay.

BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor says, "British artists well and truly flew the flag in the world's biggest and most competitive music market last year. The sensational achievements of Sam Smith, Ed Sheeran, One Direction and the entire 'Class of 2014' demonstrate once again that the U.K.'s music industry is a world-beater."

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