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Dancember
post Jul 5 2016, 07:32 AM
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The UK's 60 official biggest selling albums of all time revealed

60 years ago this month saw the birth of the Official Albums Chart – the UK’s official weekly snapshot of popularity dedicated to one of the most influential art forms of our time.

The first ever chart, which was published in Record Mirror on 22 July 1956, saw Frank Sinatra’s Songs For Swingin’ Lovers landing in the coveted Number 1 slot. Now, over half a century of vinyl, cassette, CD and download-purchasing later, nearly 1,100 albums have hit the top spot in the UK.

To mark the chart’s historic milestone and kick off July’s month-long anniversary celebrations, OfficialCharts.com can today unveil the 60 biggest selling albums of all time here in Britain, as compiled by the Official Charts Company.

The “60 at 60” list also forms the centrepiece of an in-store retail campaign, which sees Official Charts team up with the three major record labels and outlets including Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Asda, Amazon and Morrisons to promote and sell some of the UK's biggest selling albums this summer.

Topping the all time best sellers list is Queen’s 1981 Greatest Hits, and stands alone as the first and only album to have sold over 6 million copies in the UK (6.1 million sales to date). Queen’s Greatest Hits II also makes it into the Top 10 at Number 10 with almost 4 million albums sold.

"What a great bit of news to wake up to!" Brian May told OfficialCharts.com. The most popular album? Well, I always thought the band showed promise, but this is beyond our boyhood dreams! Thanks folks!"

Roger Taylor added: "Incredible...marvellous...humbling...thank you...I feel good!"

The record is also set for yet another boost later this year as a new double album gatefold vinyl edition hits shops in Autumn.

Meanwhile, ABBA – Gold: Greatest Hits is the UK’s second biggest-selling album of all-time – nearly 5.2 million units have been shifted since its release in 1992.

The best-selling studio album in Britain comes courtesy of The Beatles - Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (3) is also the only other release in history to break the five million UK sales barrier (5.1 million). Click here to look back at The Beatles' full Official Chart history.

Adele’s 2011 phenomenon 21, featuring Someone Like You, remains unmoved at Number 4 while Oasis’ (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? rounds out the Top 5 approaching 4.7 million sales.

The rest of the Top 10 features two entries from Michael Jackson; Thriller and Bad sit at 6 and 9 respectively. Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon (7) is the only record in the Top 10 that has never topped the weekly chart, peaking at Number 2 instead, while Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms lands at Number 8.

With a total of four entries, Robbie Williams makes the most appearances of any individual within the Top 60, counting two of his solo releases (I’ve Been Expecting You at 48 and Swing When You’re Winning at 56) and two Take That best-sellers (Progress at 57 and Never Forget – The Ultimate Collection at 59). Robbie also scored the 1000th Number 1 album back in 2013 with Swings Both Ways.

Take That have a third inclusion on the long list with Beautiful World at Number 34, their first album without Robbie. Also with three entries on the list are Coldplay with their albums A Rush of Blood to the Head (31), X&Y (40)and Parachutes (45). Acts with two albums apiece in the Top 60 include Michael Jackson, Queen, The Beatles, Adele, Dido, ABBA, Paul Simon (including Simon & Garfunkel) and Fleetwood Mac.

Adele’s record-breaking 25 secures all-time placing just seven months after release

While Adele’s 21 might be her personal best overall, it’s her latest offering 25 that causes the biggest disruption to today’s newly-unveiled list, rocketing into the all-time Official Albums Chart Top 30 at Number 27 after just seven months on sale.

25 broke a slew of chart records following its release back in November 2015 when it became the fastest-selling album of all time in the UK, beating Oasis’ Be Here Now to the highest ever first week sales as British shoppers snapped up a staggering 800,000 copies in its opening week.

Not content with stopping there, 25 smashed through the million sales threshold in just 10 days, setting a new land speed record for a million-selling album in Britain, the previous record being held by Oasis’ Be Here Now (17 days) also. It came as little surprise when Adele then went on to hurtle through the 2 million barrier by its 29th day on sale, overtaking title holders Robson & Jerome whose 1995 debut album took 42 days to cover the same ground.

In the time since the all-time Top 60 list was compiled, 25 has proven unstoppable by bulldozing through the 3 million units marker, receiving a 10 x Platinum certification from the BPI.

Ed Sheeran scores first-time entry into the list with X

Another notable new entry to the list is Ed Sheeran, whose second studio album X breaks into the chart at Number 49, giving him his first appearance among Britain’s most-loved LPs of the past 60 years.

An impressive run of form over recent years has seen the Suffolk singer-songwriter notch up nearly 2.6 million sales of 2014 release X. X has spent 13 weeks at Number 1 on the Official Albums Chart and, incredibly, has never left the Top 100 since its release two years ago (Click to look at X's week-by-week run on the Official Chart).

Ed was also the first recipient of the 24ct gold-plated Official Number 1 Album Award when the scheme launched one year ago this week. Ed was presented with the award on stage at Wembley Stadium in July 2015 where he made history by becoming the first solo performer to headline the legendary venue.

Commenting on this list, Official Charts chief executive Martin Talbot said: “In celebration of 60 years of the UK’s Official Album Chart, it is fantastic that we can crown Queen as the kings of the Anniversary Top 60. With seven albums by British acts in the all-time Top 10, and Adele’s 21 now challenging The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper to be the biggest selling studio album of all time, it is a great list for homegrown talent.

"And the fact that Adele’s latest album 25 is riding into the overall Top 30, along with Ed Sheeran’s X, underlines the power of the Official Albums Chart in championing great British talent, young and old. Happy birthday to the UK’s Official Albums Chart!"

The UK's official 60 biggest selling albums of all time are...

POS TITLE ARTIST YEAR HIGH POSN
1 GREATEST HITS QUEEN 1981 1 ~6.1 million
2 GOLD - GREATEST HITS ABBA 1992 1 ~5.2 million
3 SGT PEPPER'S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND BEATLES 1967 1 ~5.1 million
4 21 ADELE 2011 1
5 WHAT'S THE STORY MORNING GLORY OASIS 1995 1 ~4.7 million
6 THRILLER MICHAEL JACKSON 1982 1
7 THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON PINK FLOYD 1973 2
8 BROTHERS IN ARMS DIRE STRAITS 1985 1
9 BAD MICHAEL JACKSON 1987 1
10 GREATEST HITS II QUEEN 1991 1 ~4 million
11 RUMOURS FLEETWOOD MAC 1977 1
12 THE IMMACULATE COLLECTION MADONNA 1990 1
13 BACK TO BLACK AMY WINEHOUSE 2006 1
14 STARS SIMPLY RED 1991 1
15 COME ON OVER SHANIA TWAIN 1997 1
16 LEGEND BOB MARLEY & THE WAILERS 1984 1
17 BACK TO BEDLAM JAMES BLUNT 2004 1
18 URBAN HYMNS VERVE 1997 1
19 BAT OUT OF HELL MEAT LOAF 1977 9
20 1 BEATLES 2000 1
21 BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER SIMON & GARFUNKEL 1970 1
22 DIRTY DANCING ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK 1987 4
23 SPIRIT LEONA LEWIS 2007 1
24 CRAZY LOVE MICHAEL BUBLE 2009 1
25 NO ANGEL DIDO 2000 1
26 WHITE LADDER DAVID GRAY 1998 1
27 25 ADELE 2015 1
28 TALK ON CORNERS CORRS 1997 1
29 SPICE SPICE GIRLS 1996 1
30 THE FAME LADY GAGA 2008 1
31 A RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD COLDPLAY 2002 1
32 LIFE FOR RENT DIDO 2003 1
33 ONLY BY THE NIGHT KINGS OF LEON 2008 1
34 BEAUTIFUL WORLD TAKE THAT 2006 1
35 HOPES AND FEARS KEANE 2004 1
36 THE JOSHUA TREE U2 1987 1
37 THE WAR OF THE WORLDS JEFF WAYNE 1978 5
38 SCISSOR SISTERS SCISSOR SISTERS 2004 1
39 BUT SERIOUSLY PHIL COLLINS 1989 1
40 X&Y COLDPLAY 2005 1
41 JAGGED LITTLE PILL ALANIS MORISSETTE 1995 1
42 TUBULAR BELLS MIKE OLDFIELD 1973 1
43 THE MAN WHO TRAVIS 1999 1
44 TRACY CHAPMAN TRACY CHAPMAN 1988 1
45 PARACHUTES COLDPLAY 2000 1
46 GREATEST HITS ABBA 1975 1
47 GREASE ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK 1977 1
48 I'VE BEEN EXPECTING YOU ROBBIE WILLIAMS 1998 1
49 X ED SHEERAN 2014 1
50 COME AWAY WITH ME NORAH JONES 2002 1
51 GRACELAND PAUL SIMON 1986 1
52 THE SOUND OF MUSIC ORIGINAL CAST RECORDING 1965 1
53 LADIES & GENTLEMEN - THE BEST OF GEORGE MICHAEL 1998 1
54 TANGO IN THE NIGHT FLEETWOOD MAC 1987 1
55 THE MARSHALL MATHERS LP EMINEM 2000 1
56 SWING WHEN YOU'RE WINNING ROBBIE WILLIAMS 2001 1
57 PROGRESS TAKE THAT 2010 1
58 EYES OPEN SNOW PATROL 2006 1
59 NEVER FORGET - THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION TAKE THAT 2005 2
60 AUTOMATIC FOR THE PEOPLE REM 1992 1
2016 Official Charts Company. All rights reserved.

Stay tuned for loads more amazing features, facts and stats on the Official Albums Chart throughout July. Follow @OfficialCharts on Twitter (remember to tell us your #MyFavouriteAlbum and why) and Facebook for the latest updates, and check out the Official Albums Chart Top 100, published on OfficialCharts.com every Friday at 5.45pm.
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🎄cqmerqn🎄
post Jul 5 2016, 07:47 AM
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Thanks. Do you know roughly how much was needed to sell to get a number 60 placing?

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Bjork
post Jul 5 2016, 08:20 AM
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think I read it was 2.3 million something, above 2 million for sure

I own 20 of those in the list
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Colm
post Jul 5 2016, 08:30 AM
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I own 12. The latest addition of which is War of the Worlds which I got on vinyl for 2 on Saturday.
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Rob Spears
post Jul 5 2016, 08:51 AM
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I own 2 - The Fame & The Marshall Mathers LP. biggrin.gif
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Sambuu-Yondon
post Jul 5 2016, 08:54 AM
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31 A RUSH OF BLOOD TO THE HEAD cheer.gif
35 HOPES AND FEARS hic.gif
40 X&Y heart.gif
45 PARACHUTES arrow up.gif
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iHype.
post Jul 5 2016, 09:00 AM
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I have a question. In US they started officially tracking sales with Nielsen Soundscan in 1991. In UK they've always tracked real sales since 1956? Or if not when did they do it? I'm confused at how albums as early as 1967 have sales numbers. ohmy.gif Thought there wasn't technology to properly track sales then?

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Karma
post Jul 5 2016, 09:04 AM
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QUOTE(danG @ Jul 5 2016, 08:32 AM) *
The UK's official 60 biggest selling albums of all time are...

POS TITLE ARTIST YEAR HIGH POSN
23 SPIRIT LEONA LEWIS 2007 1


wub.gif wub.gif wub.gif wub.gif

How long till 21 gets to the #3 spot? dance.gif


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Bjork
post Jul 5 2016, 09:08 AM
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I own these:
4 21 ADELE
5 WHAT'S THE STORY MORNING GLORY OASIS
9 BAD MICHAEL JACKSON
12 THE IMMACULATE COLLECTION MADONNA
13 BACK TO BLACK AMY WINEHOUSE
15 COME ON OVER SHANIA TWAIN
17 BACK TO BEDLAM JAMES BLUNT
18 URBAN HYMNS VERVE
25 NO ANGEL DIDO
26 WHITE LADDER DAVID GRAY
32 LIFE FOR RENT DIDO
36 THE JOSHUA TREE U2
40 X&Y COLDPLAY
41 JAGGED LITTLE PILL ALANIS MORISSETTE
43 THE MAN WHO TRAVIS
44 TRACY CHAPMAN TRACY CHAPMAN
45 PARACHUTES COLDPLAY
53 LADIES & GENTLEMEN - THE BEST OF GEORGE MICHAEL
58 EYES OPEN SNOW PATROL
60 AUTOMATIC FOR THE PEOPLE REM
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liamk97
post Jul 5 2016, 10:12 AM
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Well I *was* going to add a load of known sales and estimates but the list is sales only ffs. mad.gif
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Colm
post Jul 5 2016, 10:40 AM
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QUOTE(liamk97 @ Jul 5 2016, 11:12 AM) *
Well I *was* going to add a load of known sales and estimates but the list is sales only ffs. mad.gif



Why the anger?
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liamk97
post Jul 5 2016, 10:44 AM
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QUOTE(Colm @ Jul 5 2016, 11:40 AM) *
Why the anger?

Because there's now little way of updating estimates for the albums because a lot of them have substantial streams adding to their totals - Ed Sheeran, for instance, has lost over 200k worth of his total.
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Colm
post Jul 5 2016, 10:57 AM
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So I make that 27 3 million sellers!
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JCM20
post Jul 5 2016, 11:00 AM
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The last all-time update in February 2014 didn't feature Jeff Wayne. Not a clue where he would've been before but looks like a number of people have discovered the album in the last two years
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Colm
post Jul 5 2016, 11:04 AM
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QUOTE(JCM20 @ Jul 5 2016, 12:00 PM) *
The last all-time update in February 2014 didn't feature Jeff Wayne. Not a clue where he would've been before but looks like a number of people have discovered the album in the last two years


It hasn't featured in the weekly Top 100 since March 2013 so I can only assume that it was left out of the 2014 and not because it had sold less than Automatic for the People.


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fiesta
post Jul 5 2016, 11:46 AM
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QUOTE(iHype. @ Jul 5 2016, 10:00 AM) *
I have a question. In US they started officially tracking sales with Nielsen Soundscan in 1991. In UK they've always tracked real sales since 1956? Or if not when did they do it? I'm confused at how albums as early as 1967 have sales numbers. ohmy.gif Thought there wasn't technology to properly track sales then?


The OCC have 'over the counter sales' back to February 1994, before that date I think shipment sales have been used from record companies.
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JCM20
post Jul 5 2016, 03:42 PM
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The Immaculate Collection was almost 100,000 behind Back to Black in "Sales" the other day, so either that figure's from too far back or Madonna's experienced an overnight SPIKE in sales!

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liamk97
post Jul 5 2016, 04:22 PM
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QUOTE(JCM20 @ Jul 5 2016, 04:42 PM) *
The Immaculate Collection was almost 100,000 behind Back to Black in "Sales" the other day, so either that figure's from too far back or Madonna's experienced an overnight SPIKE in sales!

The figure I gave for The Immaculate Collection was from late 2014 after True Blue re-charted in the Top 40 thanks to a 99p Google Play offer. I imagine Madonna has sold well on the budget chart since then but Back to Black will probably still be ahead with streams. This is the problem I'm talking about: this list the OCC have given is based on sales-only but a lot of the albums (especially Back to Black) have a good chunk of streams making up their totals so their official totals aren't going to line up with the information given on this list.
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crazy christmas
post Jul 5 2016, 04:40 PM
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Radio 2 will play this chart, top 40 maybe, between 2 and 5 on August Bank Holiday Monday.
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crazy christmas
post Jul 5 2016, 04:52 PM
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I own them all on CD except Dirty Dancing and Sound Of Music. Does anyone have them all?
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