Adele”s “25” Rules as Nielsen Music’s Top Record of 2015 in U.S.

Adele"s "25" Rules as Nielsen Music's Top Record of 2015 in U.S.












Adele’s 25 successes as 2015’s most popular record in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music, as the data firm reports that the title earned 8.01 million same record units during the year — with a whopping 7.44 million of that in conventional record sales.

The 8.01 million same record units amount is a multi-metrical consumption total, which contains conventional record sales, track equivalent records (TEA) and streaming equivalent records (SEA). The multi-metric rule is also accustomed to compile the weekly Billboard 200 albums chart, which rates the most famous records of the week in the U.S.

Nielsen Music’s 2015 monitoring year ran from Dec. 29, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2015. 

Rank Artist, Name Total Components
1 Adele, 25 8,008,000
2 Taylor Swift, 1989 3,105,000
3 Justin Bieber, Function 2,225,000
4 Ed Sheeran, X 2,206,000
5 The Weeknd, Beauty Behind the Madness 2,045,000
6 Drake, In The Event You Are Reading This It Is Too Late 1,919,000
7 Meghan Trainor, Title 1,795,000
8 Sam Smith, In the Lonesome Hour 1,741,000
9 Sam Hunt, Montevallo 1,378,000
10 Fetty Wap, Fetty Wap 1,295,000
Source: Nielsen Music, for the monitoring interval Dec. 29, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2015.

Taylor Swift’s 1989 is the year’s second-largest record (3.1 million units; 1.99 million in pure record sales), followed by Justin Bieber’s Purpose (2.22 million units; 1.27 million record sales) and Ed Sheeran’s X (2.21 million units; 1.16 million record sales).

The Weeknd’s Beauty Behind the Madness closes 2015 as the No. 5 most popular record (2.04 million units), followed by Drake’s If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (1.92 million units), Meghan Trainor’s Title (1.79 million units), Sam Smith’s In the Lonesome Hour (1.74 million units), Sam Hunt’s Montevallo (1.38 million units) and Fetty Wap’s self-named record (1.29 million units).

A year past, the most famous record of 2014 — in relation to total same record units — was the Frozen soundtrack with 4.47 million units. Swift’s 1989 was the No. 2 set, with 4.40 million units. 

In total for 2015, Nielsen reports that 549.35 million same record units were used up — up 15.2 percent compared to 2014’s draw (476.93 million). The increase is owed to a 93 percent raise in on demand streams (SEA). Pure record sales were down 6 percent — more on that in a moment — while track same records (TEA) dropped by 13 percent. !

SALES STORY: Adele’s 25 ends 2015 as the top selling album (7.44 million), which shouldn’t come as a surprise, as its weekly sales have been record breaking. 25 was released Nov. 20 on XL Recordings/Columbia Records. 

Adele is the first musician to deserve the top selling record of a calendar year three times since Nielsen Music’s first complete year of monitoring in 1992. She led the year end tallies in 2011 and 2012, 21, with her preceding record. In those years, 21 sold 4.41 million and 5.82 million, respectively. 

25 is in addition the second-largest selling record by a girl of a calendar year in Nielsen Music history. Among titles by girls, only Britney Spears 'Oops!… I Did It Again' sold more in a year, when it changed 7.89 million in 2000.

25 sold a whopping 7.44 million copies in only six weeks on sale, as the title was released on Nov. 20. 

Taylor Swift’s 1989, which was 2014’s top selling record (3.66 million sold that year), continued to perform strongly in 2015: it’s the No. 2 best selling set of the year, with 1.99 million sold. 

1989 and 25 are two of the seven million-selling records of 2015 — four more than were realized in 2014.

Rank Artist, Name Whole Sales
1 Adele, 25 7,441,000
2 Taylor Swift, 1989 1,993,000
3 Justin Bieber, Objective 1,269,000
4 Ed Sheeran, X 1,162,000
5 Drake, In The Event You Are Reading This It Is Too Late 1,142,000
6 Sam Smith, In the Lonesome Hour 1,018,000
7 Meghan Trainor, Title 1,007,000
8 The Weeknd, Beauty Behind the Madness 862,000
9 Soundtrack, Fifty Shades of Grey 861,000
10 Luke Bryan, Kill the Lights 851,000
Source: Nielsen Music, for the monitoring interval Dec. 29, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2015.

Following 25 and 1989 on 2015’s year end best selling records list is Justin Bieber’s Goal (1.27 million), Ed Sheeran’s X (1.16 million), Drake’s If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (1.14 million), Sam Smith’s In the Lonesome Hour (1.02 million) and Meghan Trainor’s Title (1.01 million). !

Rounding out the year’s top 10 best sellers are: The Weeknd’s Beauty Behind the Madness (862,000), the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack (861,000) and Luke Bryan’s Kill the Lights (851,000).

Total record sales — real and digital joined — fell by 6 percent in 2015 to 241.39 million (down from 257.02 million in 2014). 25 ’s remarkable sales amount helped facilitate the continuing downward fall in sales quantity. Without 25’s 7.44 million sales, record sales would have fell by 9 percent instead of 6 percent. 25’s sales loomed so big, it represented 3.1 percent of total record sales in 2015.

Comparably, overall record sales eroded 8 percent in 2013, 11 percent in 2014, and 4 percent in the year 2012.

The Year in Pop 2015: Taylor Swift, '1989' and 'Uptown Funk!' Rule as Top Artist, Album and Song

& lsquo;25’ RULES DIGITAL RECORD SALES, ALSO: Digital record sales also dropped in 2015, for the 3rd time, by 3 percent (103.33 million versus 106.47 million in 2014). Digital record sales also fell in 2013 and 2014.

The top selling digital record of 2015 is Adele’s 25 with 2.31 million — the most downloads sold of any digital record in a calendar year, and the first time an album has sold more than 2 million downloads in a calendar year. The preceding biggest selling digital record in a calendar year was Adele’s 21, when it moved 1.8 million in 2011. !

21 and 25 are the Nos. 1 and 3 top selling digital records of all time, with 3.21 million and 2.31 million downloads sold, respectively. Taylor Swift’s 1989 is in second place, with 2.35 million. !

PHONOGRAPH RECORD GROOVES: Phonograph Record record sales continued to boom, as they were up by 30 percent to 11.92 million sold in 2015 (up from 9.19 million in 2014) for the 10th straight year of increase.

Phonograph Record record sales represented 5 percent of all records sold in the U.S. in 2015. !

The top selling vinyl LP of 2015 is Adele’s 25, sold . copies with 116,000 Since Nielsen started tracking sales in 1991 (well following the phonograph record structure failed in the 1980s), 25 is the biggest selling vinyl record in a calendar year.

& lsquo;FUNK’ LEADS DIGITAL TUNE SALES: In relation to digital tune download sales, the settings dropped by 12 percent in 2015 to 964.76 million sold (down from 1.1 billion in 2014). Nielsen started monitoring tune download sales in the summer of 2003, soon after Apple’s iTunes Music Store

The top selling digital tune of 2015 is Mark Ronson’s “Uptown Funk!” featuring Bruno Mars, with 5.53 million sold. To compare, 2014’s best seller was Pharrell Williams’ “Joyful” with 6.45 million.

Rank Artist, Name Whole Sales
1 Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars, Uptown Funk! 5,529,000
2 Ed Sheeran, Thinking Out Loud 3,976,000
3 Wiz Khalifa featuring Charlie Puth, See You Again 3,801,000
4 Adele, Hello 3,712,000
5 Maroon 5, Sugar 3,343,000
6 Walk the Moon, Shut Up and Dance 2,986,000
7 Fetty Wap, Snare Queen 2,730,000
8 OMI, Cheerleader 2,698,000
9 The Weekend, The Hills 2,586,000
10 Taylor Swift featuring Kendrick Lamar, Bad Blood 2,580,000
Source: Nielsen Music, for the monitoring interval Dec. 29, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2015.

As for the remainder of 2015’s top 10 selling download tunes: Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” is runnerup (3.98 million), followed by Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again,” featuring Charlie Puth (3.8 million) and Adele’s “Hello” (3.71 million).

Maroon 5’s “Sugar” is the No. 5 sell (3.34 million), Walk the Moon’s “Shut Up and Dancing” is No. 6 (2.99 million) and Fetty Wap’s “Snare Queen” is No. 7 (2.73 million). OMI’s “Cheerleader” is No. 8 (2.7 million), The Weeknd’s “The Hills” is No. 9 (2.59 million) and Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood,” featuring Kendrick Lamar, rounds out the year’s top 10 best sellers at No. 10 (2.58 million).

In total, 61 tunes sold at least a million downloads in 2015 (down from 82 in 2014 and 106 in 2013). Seventeen went at least two million in 2015 (down from 25 in 2014 and 38 in 2013). !

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