The Eagles pass Michael Jackson for the best-selling album of all time
The RIAA confirmed that 'Their Greatest Hits (1971-1975)' has now surpassed even Jackson's 'Thriller' in sales
The Eagles have flown past Michael Jackson’s Thriller to take the record for the best-selling album of all time.
Recording Industry Association of America confirmed to the Associated Press on Monday that the band’s 1976 compilation album, Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975), has been certified 38x platinum, which means sales and streams of the album have reached 38 million copies. That officially puts it ahead of Thriller, which has been certified 33x platinum.
That’s not even the limit of the Eagles’ record-selling dominance. In addition to grabbing the No. 1 spot, the band also has the third-best-selling album of all time: 1977’s Hotel California, which is now 26x 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,” Don Henley said in a statement.
This is the first time RIAA has tallied sales for Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) since 2006, when it was 29x platinum. Since then, there have been some changes in the way the company tallies platinum status. One platinum marker used to be equivalent to selling one million albums, but starting in 2013 the RIAA has incorporated streaming numbers from YouTube, Spotify, and other digital music services into their sales figures. In this context, 1,500 streams of an album is equivalent to one sale. Thriller‘s numbers were updated last year.
Though sometimes mocked in pop culture (most famously in The Big Lebowski), the Eagles have enjoyed a resurgence of interest lately thanks to the two-part documentary series History of the Eagles.