Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Top 10 Best-Selling Albums of All Time

I love lists and rankings; here are the best selling LPs of all time. The margin by which Thriller leads is astounding. I had thought Rumours was higher on the list. Phantom of the Opera surprised me. Interestingly, only 6 of the 11 are traditional albums.


Will Luther said...

I wonder what the list would look like if we divided albums sold by gdp per capita in the year it was released.

Would this be a more accurate measure?

Matt E. Ryan said...

Is the implication that these albums sold well because of prosperous economic times? An interesting premise...though I think an interesting way to look at this would be to measure substitutes for music at the given time as a measure of traction in the market. If there were less entertainment alternatives, we'd expect more albums to be sold. I don't think anything is kicking Thriller from the top spot, though...it's got more than twice the second place album?!

I also think what could help some of these are the changes in music delivery. For example, Thriller came out right before CDs became prominent. Anyone who likes that album would have presumably bought it twice-- once for the tape, once for the CD. Not sure how much of an impact that would have across the board, however.

It's a worldwide measure, too, for what it's worth.

mathmomma said...

How will MP3 downloads affect future "album" rankings since store album/CD sales are very low?

Anonymous said...

perfectsubstitute.blogspot.com; You saved my day again.