Michael Jackson Music Dominates Billboard Charts, 800K Albums Sold
On the day the world said goodbye to Michael Jackson, his legacy continues to shine on Billboard’s charts, a testament to his lasting musical legacy and impact.
Based on preliminary sales numbers from Nielsen SoundScan, Jackson’s catalog of solo albums sold a whopping 800,000 copies in the U.S. in the tracking week that ended at the close of business on Sunday (July 5) night. That’s an increase of 90% compared to the previous week, when his combined albums sold 422,000.
A jump in sales was expected, since this was the first full week of sales since Jackson’s passing on June 25. Additionally, after most physical retailers swiftly sold out of available Jackson albums, Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group were able to replenish brick-and-mortar stores with CDs last week to meet customer demand.
In turn, physical albums accounted for 82% of Jackson’s sales last week — 656,000 physical albums versus 144,000 download albums. In the week previous, when Jackson’s albums moved a total of 422,000, physical albums accounted for 43% of that sum (181,000) while digital albums made up the other 57% (241,000).
When SoundScan’s charts are released in the morning on Wednesday, July 8, Jackson’s “Number Ones” collection will be the top selling album in the United States, with 339,000 (up 215%) and will also be No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Comprehensive Albums chart. “Thriller” will be No. 2 with 187,000 (up 86%) while the third place set will be the newly released “Now 31” various artists compilation, which will start with 169,000.
Jackson will also again dominate the Top Pop Catalog Albums chart. It tallies albums that are more than 18 months old, have fallen below No. 100 on the Billboard 200 and don’t have a current radio single. Catalog albums are ineligible to appear on The Billboard 200 chart though they can chart on the Top Comprehensive Albums chart.
Last week, Jackson had a record eight albums out of the top 10 on the Top Pop Catalog Albums chart, while a Jackson 5 compilation also found its way into the upper tier. This week, the entire top 10 is all-Jackson, all the time. He alone has albums at Nos. 1-6 and Nos. 8-10 while a Jackson 5 title (“The Ultimate Collection”) resides at No. 7.
On Billboard’s Hot Digital Songs chart, Jackson will hold down five out of the top 10 slots, with “Man in the Mirror” leading as his top selling digital download song of the week (159,000; down 3%). Overall, it ranks as the second-best selling song of the week, next to the Black Eyed Peas’ “I Gotta Feeling” (215,000; up 6%).
Jackson’s total song download sales this week — including his works with the Jackson 5 and the Jacksons — stand at 2.2 million downloads. Last week, the collected total was 2.6 million