The death of music icon Prince has brought a focus to his catalog in a way seen only with the biggest of artists.
The scope of Prince’s sales surge from his passing in April until today can only be compared to what was seen after the death of Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson. Dozens of his albums returned to the Billboard 200 and two have sold in such large numbers that they have made the top ten albums of 2016 as we approach the mid-year point.
The Very Best of Prince has now sold 774,000 copies in 2016, making it the fifth best seller of the year. Since its release in 2001, the album has moved 2,600,000 units.
The soundtrack of Purple Rain has also been a big seller with 433,000 copies this year. The album, which is at number 9 on the mid-year list, has sold 3,500,000 copies since its release in 1984.
Also on the mid-year list, at number 10, is David Bowie’s Blackstar. Released just days before his death, the album has moved 430,000 copies.
To date, only three albums have sold more than one million copies in 2016 which is actually an increase from two years ago when the Frozen soundtrack was the only set to exceed that number until Taylor Swift’s late-year release 1989.
The top ten albums of 2016 as of June 10:
1. 25 – Adele (1.54 million)
2. Views – Drake (1.43 million)
3. Lemonade – Beyonce (1.29 million)
4. Purpose – Justin Bieber (800,000)
5. The Very Best of Prince – Prince (774,000)
6. Traveler – Chris Stapleton (769,000)
7. ANTI – Rihanna (709,000)
8. Blurryface – twenty one pilots (536,000)
9. Purple Rain – Prince (433,000)
10. Blackstar – David Bowie (430,000)
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