BEST POP ARTISTS OF ALL TIME: THE MOST SELLING ARTISTS
Over the years, numerous artists have entered and exited the scene. Making a mark in the music industry is a formidable task, especially achieving the status of being among the greatest of all time and consistently influencing successive generations of music enthusiasts.
Exceptional artists such as The Beatles, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, and Madonna are truly unparalleled in their impact!
THE MOST SELLING ARTISTS
The Beatles (More than 600 Million Units)
Let’s wrap it up with The Beatles, a band hailing from Liverpool that boasts the highest reported sales of around 600 million units.
John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, and George Harrison played key roles in the ‘British Invasion’ during the 1960s, when English media and culture gained widespread popularity in the U.S., leaving a lasting impact on American music.
The band produced a total of 13 studio albums, starting with their 1963 debut, “Please Please Me,” and concluding with their final release, “Past Masters,” in 1988, when they eventually disbanded.
Elvis Presley (600 Million Units)
Elvis Presley, with an estimated 600 million units sold, was another legendary artist who left us prematurely.
Known as the ‘King of Rock and Roll,’ Elvis was a massive pop culture sensation, transcending racial divides, particularly during the turbulent 1960s in the United States. His discography includes approximately 24 albums, starting with his eponymous debut in 1956 and concluding with “Moody Blue” in 1977.
Michael Jackson (350 Million Units)
We can’t forget the King of Pop in this lineup. Before his unexpected passing in 2009, Michael Jackson achieved around 300-350 million units in claimed sales across his ten studio albums.
“Thriller,” his sixth LP, stands out as a masterpiece of pop music, showcasing his ability to transcend racial barriers.
Elton John (250 Million Units)
Sir Elton John, along with his enduring creative partner Bernie Taupin, has produced a grand total of 13 albums from “Empty Sky” in 1969 to “Wonderful Crazy Night” in 2016. Across their extensive career, this dynamic duo achieved an impressive 250-300 million units in sales.
Elton John’s impact on the British music scene was so significant that in 1998, Queen Elizabeth II knighted him in recognition of his “services to music and charitable contributions.”
Madonna (300 Million Units)
Madonna, born in 1958, stands out as one of the few artists who have seamlessly spanned across decades. The influential singer made her debut in 1983 with “Madonna: The First Album,” and her most recent work, “Madame X,” hit the shelves in 2019.
Known for her fearless approach, Madonna frequently courts controversy by delving into taboo subjects, including social and religious themes, making her one of the most outspoken artists in the industry. With an estimated 275-300 million units in sales, Madonna’s impact on the music scene is truly enduring.
Rihanna (200 Million Units)
While it may seem like ages since Rihanna dropped new music, with her latest albums as “Anti” hitting the shelves in 2016, she remains a bona fide pop sensation.
Her status as one of the most prominent “sex symbols” was significantly boosted by her albums “Music of the Sun” (2005) and “A Girl Like Me” (2006).
Beyond her musical endeavors, Bad Gal RiRi has made a significant mark in the beauty industry with her cosmetics brand and fashion line, “Fenty Beauty.” With an estimated 200 million units in sales, Rihanna’s influence extends well beyond the realm of music.
Taylor Swift (200 Million Units)
Taylor Swift‘s exceptional songwriting talent is truly unique. At the age of 17, she made a notable entrance into the country music scene with her self-titled debut album, and since then, she has continuously explored and evolved across various genres. From the pop-centric “1989” to the trap-influenced “Reputation,” Swift’s musical journey showcases her versatility.
Notably, her influence extends beyond the impressive sales figure of around 200 million units, as evidenced by her recent release, the ninth album titled “Evermore.” Swift’s ability to navigate and experiment with different genres has solidified her status as a dynamic and enduring figure in the music industry.
Mariah Carey (200 Million Units)
It’s a misconception to claim that Mariah Carey’s financial success solely comes from shopping malls playing “All I Want For Christmas Is You” during the holiday season.
Before artists like Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears gained fame, Carey dominated the 1990s with six platinum-certified albums. Notably, “Music Box” (1993), “Merry Christmas” (1994), and “Daydream” (1995) enjoyed consecutive successes, establishing Carey’s reign during that era.
Whitney Houston (170 Million Units)
The late Whitney Houston remains an iconic figure whose breakthrough in the 1980s paved the way for numerous African-American women to follow in her footsteps. Her self-titled debut album, certified platinum at least 13 times, stands as one of the highest-selling albums of all time.
Tragically, Houston passed away in 2012, but her enduring impact on the music industry was recognized when she was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2020. With an estimated 170-200 million units in sales, Whitney Houston’s legacy continues to influence and inspire.
Celine Dion (170 Million Units)
Celine Dion boasts two diamond-certified albums in her discography: “Falling Into You” (1996) and “Let’s Talk About Love” (1997), the latter featuring the iconic Titanic soundtrack, “My Heart Will Go On.”
Notably, a diamond certification signifies that an album has shipped over ten million copies. In the case of “double-diamond certification,” the album has sold over 20 million copies, and so forth. Dion’s impressive sales figures reflect the widespread appeal and enduring popularity of her music.