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The Eagles' 'Greatest Hits' Supplants 'Thriller' As The Top-Selling Album Of All Time...Again

The Eagles' 'Greatest Hits' Supplants 'Thriller' As The Top-Selling Album Of All Time...Again

Forty-two years after its release in 1976, the Eagles album “Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975” has become the best-selling album of all time.

What Happened

This week, the Eagles album officially passed Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” in total sales, according to the Recording Industry Association of America.

“Their Greatest Hits” is now certified 38 times platinum, meaning it has sold 38 million copies. For some perspective, that number is roughly in line with the entire population of the Eagles’ home native state of California.

“Thriller,” which was released in 1982, is certified 33 times platinum.

“We are grateful for our families, our management, our crew, the people at radio and, most of all, the loyal fans who have stuck with us through the ups and downs of 46 years. It's been quite a ride,” Eagles member Don Henley said in a statement.

How It Happened

The RIAA tweaked the formula it uses to calculate record sales in 2013 due to the changing landscape of the music industry. The association now counts 1,500 album streams on digital streaming services such as Spotify Technology SA (NYSE: SPOT) and Pandora Media Inc (NYSE: P) as equivalent to one album sale. Ten song downloads are also counted as a single album sale.

Not Their First Time

According to Billboard, “Their Greatest Hits” was previously the top-selling album of all time for nearly 10 years prior to being leapfrogged by “Thriller” in the aftermath of Jackson’s death in 2009.

According to the RIAA website, the Eagles album “Hotel California” is now the third best-selling album of all time as well with a 26 times platinum certification. Billy Joel’s “Greatest Hits Volume I & Volume II” and Led Zeppelin’s “Led Zeppelin IV” roud out the top five with 23 times platinum certifications.

Related Links:

5 Most Expensive Vinyl Records Ever Sold

Vinyl Records Are Popular Again, So Sony Wants Back In After 30 Years

Photo credit: Steve Alexander, Flickr

Posted-In: Michael Jackson Recording Industry Association of America The EaglesNews Best of Benzinga


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