CSPC: Coldplay Popularity Analysis [UPDATED]

Coldplay

Digital Singles Sales – Part 2
Mylo Xyloto (2011) – 2,772,000 equivalent albums

Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall – 3,400,000
Paradise– 8,850,000
Charlie Brown – 900,000
Princess Of China – 2,480,000
Remaining Songs – 2,850,000

Ghost Stories (2014) – 1,260,000 equivalent albums

Magic – 2,400,000
Midnight– 600,000
A Sky Full Of Stars – 3,800,000
Remaining Songs – 1,600,000

A Head Full Of Dreams (2015) – 990,000 equivalent albums

Adventure Of A Lifetime – 2,350,000
Hymn For The Weekend – 2,300,000
Everglow – 700,000
Remaining Songs – 1,250,000

Orphan Album – 705,000 equivalent albums

Christmas Lights – 1,300,000
Atlas – 500,000
Something Just Like This – 1,800,000
Remaining tracks – 1,100,000

Yellow, Clocks/The Scientist, Speed of Sound, Viva La Vida… it is difficult to maintain a string of insanely popular singles from each album. They weren’t all chart toppers as physical singles sales were purchased almost exclusively by teens in early 00s, but all those singles have been an impressively efficient traction for album sales. With Mylo Xyloto, the unstoppable train that pushed the Coldplay-machine to one more successful era was Paradise. This song sold 3 million copies less than Viva La Vida in the US, but it was just as massive elsewhere, en route for nearly 9 million units sold to date.

Both the lower success of Ghost Stories’ singles as well as the sharp drops of the downloads markets prevented subsequent singles to climb as high as Paradise. Coldplay still recorded at least two 2 million sellers from each era, including two singles from A Head Full Of Dreams, which is now a way more difficult achievement than a few years ago. Their last hit in collaboration with the hyped duo ChainsmokersSomething Just Like This, is on its way to break that 2 million barrier too.

In total, the British Pop / Rock band sold 93 million digital singles. Even if this format is dying, the group is poised to break the 100 million download singles sales.

17 thoughts on “CSPC: Coldplay Popularity Analysis [UPDATED]”

  1. Please update
    1. A Head Full of Dreams is now 3x Platinum in France
    2. In Brazil, A Head Full of Dreams already sold 100,000 copies (at least)
    3. In UK, A Head Full of Dreams has sold 875,000 copies.

    1. Hello Sambuu,

      You need to keep in mind figures you are quoting include a good share of streaming converted to sales. As Streaming figures refer to Worldwide streaming, we need to first remove it from countries were it gets counted to avoid double counting.

      As for later updates of ‘new’ ongoing sales, I’ll not be reflecting them on articles as they are dated. It will create confusion and push people to inflate figures if they read figures updated in Sept 2016 on an article dated for example March 2016. I’ll possibly re-do a CSPC Coldplay article when the total will have significantly changed, but in-between I’ll not be updating this one.

      About sales equivalence logic, I suggest you to read this introduction article.

  2. Hello dear MJD and Hernàn, I am curious to know which artist or group you analyze this week.
    Answer me please, I am very curious !!!

  3. HI MJD

    since you wrote this article.

    A Head Full of Dreams

    UK : 3x Platinum (900,000)
    New Zealand : Platinum (15,000)
    Poland : 2x Platinum (40,000)
    France : 3x Platinum (300,000)

    1. Hello Sambuu,

      You need to take into account that those certifications involve a huge amount (25-50% of the total) of streaming, thus you are double-counting their numbers by sticking with them.

  4. i love Coldplay!
    Caught them last night in concert in Manila.
    What an experience!
    They are are definitely one of the BEST bands out there!
    Kudos!

  5. Thanks for updating Coldplay, you only counted pure album sales in Original album sales ?

    I Have few question

    1. Why you missed some countries ? (Portugal, Denmark, Hungary)
    I know these countries not big as UK or US. But Coldplay is one biggest act of Europe. Maybe you should include

    2. Your first article : Coldplay sold 83M equivalent album units, now 80M. But i think they’re already reached 90M. Because of success of 2016 (A Head Full of Dreams sales + Hymn + Adventure success). At the during Coldplay headlining Super Bowl, big newspapers are saying Coldplay has sold 80M records in worldwide.

    3. How can you determine digital album and singles sales?

    4. You can see this document (As April 2017)

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=0Bx-9l-dnxzImaGQ1bHIyOTNiU3c

    1. Hi Sambuu,

      0) Original album sales is indeed pure album sales – physical copies shipped + downloads. No streaming involved.

      1) The template is fixed, at times I add some countries like South Korea when it brings new information, but for Europe the listed countries are always the same ones for all artists. It doesn’t mean Portugal or Denmark are ignored, if you check the Europe total and add the 10 countries listed, you will see there is additional sales factored in for those unlisted markets.

      2) There is no way they are up to 90m. Please check the comment I posted just before yours which explains the lower figures. Both IFPI figures and Coldplay’s own details prove their sales in various small countries aren’t as big as first expected.

      3) There is no need to estimate download album sales as they are already included in album sales of all countries. Digital singles are estimated just like albums with figures from all the main markets, although details aren’t posted since it would be way too heavy/long to post.

      4) The issue there is the mix of formats. I take off streaming from all albums / singles sales since I add it by itself in one specific category, so you can’t add simply certifications for the other categories. For example, the huge majority of “sales” from last era awards in Italy are due to streaming.

  6. Hi MJD!

    Looking back at this article, I found that you made a calculation mistake. On page 7 of Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends album sales breakdown, you have the Asian total at 520,000 but the markets you’ve listed add up to 580,000.

    By the way, you’ve mentioned in your article that Coldplay adds 3-5 million album sales equivalents per year. Are you sure that’s not an exaggeration? That would mean they’ll break the 100m mark in no more than 7 years! Also, which 2000s’ act has the better catalog showing, Coldplay or Eminem? Both of them have massive streams for their past albums.

  7. Today, I seeing the United World Chart (Global Chart) website reports that “A Head Full of Dreams” (Coldplay) has sold 4,369,000 copies worldwide, but your site claims to have sold 3,450,000 copies worldwide. How is this difference between your site and the other?

  8. Hello Mr. Viera

    I wanted to ask: why do you have Mexican sales of the Viva la Vida album at 85,000 when AMPROFON has certified the album 2x Diamond+4xPlatinum for 1,200,000 copies in the “Full Album Preloaded” caregory?
    Why is the AMPROFON number so high?

    Thanks.

    1. Hi Mauricio!

      I decided to exclude preloaded sales as they aren’t legitimate, they don’t reflect the success of an album / artist. Those awards refer to smartphones sold with the album included on them. Nobody buy a smartphone because of some songs present on it. Allowing those sales would be like arguying the Microsoft Solitaire is the best selling game of all-time just because it features on computers with Windows!

      PS: in Portuguese it’s Vieira rather than Viera 😉

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