Last week, we predicted that Adele would start 2012 with her 14th (non-consecutive) week at #1 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart, and lo! the prediction came true. Now that the final numbers are in for 2011 (full singles and album sales lists after the jump), Adele’s dominance has never been clearer. Selling 5.82 million copies of 21 during the calendar year 2011, Adele outsold second place holder Michael Bublé‘s Christmas by over 3 million copies, and marked the most sales of any album since 2004 when Usher‘s Confessions sold 7.98 million copies. “Rolling In The Deep” was also at the top of the singles sales list, with 5.81 million copies sold, the first single to ever exceed 5 million paid downloads in a year.
It will be interesting to see what 2012 holds for Adele, given that the singer/songwriter isn’t planning to turn out another album any time soon, and has been quoted as saying she wants to “lay low” for a while, and only release a new album when it’s perfect. Adele was the only artist in 2011 to have Top 10 sales for two singles (“Someone Like You” was #7), and was joined by Lady Gaga as the only other artist to have both a Top 10 sales ranking album and single. Given that Forbes named Lady Gaga the highest earning female artist in 2011, and that she’s set to release another album in 2012 when Adele could quite possibly drop off the radar entirely, could 2012 be Mother Monster’s year to shoot to number one? And if not, who will rise to the top of the pack in Adele’s absence? Will they be able to come close to Adele’s behemoth sales?
2011 was undoubtedly the year of Adele, with the young singer/songwriter proving that she is, indeed, boss of everything. She was on everyone’s “best of 2011″ list from industry observers, to fans, to VH1’s own staff; she cleaned up in Grammy nominations and sold the most digital copies of any song ever with “Rolling In The Deep.” Now Reuters has reported that Adele’s 21 is not only the top selling album of 2011, but it’s the top selling album since 2004! 21 has sold 5 million copies this year, and is the first album to reach over 5 million in sales since Usher‘s Confessions moved 7.9 million copies in 2004. According to Reuters, Adele’s amazing feat has coincided with a three per cent spike in music sales since 2010, which has us thinking that maybe Adele’s awesome success is partly responsible for stimulating the music consumer market. Given the advent of music sharing devices like Spotify, it’s a wonder that people are buying music at all, given the relative ease and inexpensive nature of sharing, and that there are now perfectly legal ways in which to file share. Reuters speculates that agressive sales tactics by artists and retailers has helped move records this year, but we’ve got an inkling that some of the merit can be attributed to the greatness of this year’s music releases, acting as a testament that fans will still spend hard earned dollars on their favorite artists and on high quality music.
Adele Sells Most Albums In A Year Since 2004 [Reuters]
[Photo: Getty Images]
We officially declare 2011 the year of Adele (as if there was even any question in the first place!). Not only has she made the “top” and “best” lists of both critics and the industry, but she’s also been a favorite with audiences globally, dominating the charts and generally just being played and gushed over absolutely everywhere. As if all the Grammy nominations and accolades weren’t enough, Adele has also made the record of most digital sales in a calendar year for “Rolling In The Deep,” selling more than any song in digital history — 5,572,000 copies so far, to be exact! Of course, there’s still a few weeks left in the year, but nothing short of a freak occurrence could topple Adele, as second place holder, LMFAO‘s “Party Rock Anthem” is still way behind the singer-songwriter, having sold (only?) 4,878,000 copies.
Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” Sold More Digital Copies Than Any Song Ever [Idolator]
[Photo: Getty Images]