CSPC: Fleetwood Mac Popularity Analysis

Itunes

Digital Singles Sales

No need to say Fleetwood Mac hey-days weren’t marked by digital sales as iTunes was launched more than 15 years after the band last successful album. The question then is how enduring is the appeal of their past hits. Since Rumours and their compilations are impressive catalog sellers, it comes as no surprise to see their digital sales being pretty healthy too.

Moving more than 17 million digital singles in the US alone, the group is up to 32 million singles sold overall. Incredibly, Rumours songs are responsible for almost half of that tally. Their leading hit is 1977 single Go Your Own Way although several songs follow it quite closely.

As a reminder, the weighting is done with a 10 to 1,5 ratio between one album and one digital single.

Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac (1968) – 60,000 equivalent albums

All tracks – 400,000

Mr. Wonderful (1968) – 53,000 equivalent albums

All tracks – 350,000

Then Play On (1969) – 15,000 equivalent albums

All tracks – 100,000

Kiln House (1970) – 3,000 equivalent albums

All tracks – 20,000

Future Games (1971) – 0 equivalent albums

Not available digitally.

Bare Trees (1972) – 0 equivalent albums

Not available digitally.

Penguin (1973) – 0 equivalent albums

Not available digitally.

Mystery To Me (1973) – 0 equivalent albums

Not available digitally.

Heroes Are Hard To Find (1974) – 8,000 equivalent albums

Not available digitally except Angel, 50,000.

Fleetwood Mac (1975) – 825,000 equivalent albums

Over My Head – 200,000
Rhiannon – 1,500,000
Say You Love Me – 300,000
Landslide – 2,900,000
Remaining Tracks – 600,000

Rumours (1977) – 2,250,000 equivalent albums

Go Your Own Way – 4,400,000
Don’t Stop – 1,000,000
Dreams – 3,100,000
You Make Loving Fun – 700,000
The Chain – 2,100,000
Songbird – 700,000
Never Going Back Again – 1,200,000
Second Hand News – 500,000
Gold Dust Woman – 400,000
I Don’t Want To Know – 200,000
Oh Daddy – 200,000
Remaining Tracks – 500,000

Tusk (1979) – 240,000  equivalent albums

Tusk – 400,000
Sara – 650,000
Think About Me – 75,000
Sisters Of The Moon – 75,000
Remaining Tracks – 400,000

Mirage (1982) – 188,000  equivalent albums

Hold Me – 200,000
Gypsy – 800,000
Love In Store – 50,000
Oh Diane – 50,000
Remaining Tracks – 150,000

Tango In The Night (1987) – 810,000  equivalent albums

Big Love – 400,000
Seven Wonders – 500,000
Little Lies – 1,300,000
Family Man – 100,000
Everywhere – 2,700,000
Remaining Tracks – 400,000

Behind The Mask (1990) – 15,000  equivalent albums

All Tracks – 100,000

Time (1995) – 8,000  equivalent albums

All Tracks – 50,000

Say You Will (2003) – 75,000  equivalent albums

All Tracks – 500,000

Orphan Album – 255,000  equivalent albums

Black Magic Woman – 250,000
Need Your Love So Bad – 100,000
Albatross – 400,000
Man Of The World – 75,000
Oh Well – 50,000
The Green Manalashi – 25,000
As Long As You Follow – 100,000
Remaining Tracks – 700,000

20 thoughts on “CSPC: Fleetwood Mac Popularity Analysis”

  1. Nice work again MJD! Quite a big number for a band who is often considered a one-album wonder!

    By the way, MJD, you made a slight (probably irrelevant) mistakes on page 20. Firstly, the release year for Tango in the Night says 1977, but it should be 1987. Moreover, on Orphan albums, those singles add up to 4,3m, so the album equivalent should be 1,29m, 60K less than what you’ve typed.

    Looking forward for your next post!

    1. Hi Raffi!

      The typo of the year is fixed, on the Orphan Album calculation I have put 1,23 million, missing the “Remaining Singles” 200,000 units from the cum, now fixed!

      Your help is highly appreciated Raffi, it is very welcome to have someone enabling me to always correct all typos in such a detailed way that may stay here and there.

      Thanks again!

  2. Hi dear MJD !!!

    Your articles and your detailed analysis are always fantastic, even for Fleetwood Mac, really compliments, I visit your site every day to see if there are new artists analyzed, I hope you analyze as soon as the Fab Four (The Beatles), I’m a big fan of the four legendary musicians from Liverpool !!!

    1. Hello Anthony!

      The ones The Beatles, Michael Jackson and Elvis Presley are definitely in the pipe. Giving their importance yet, I’m building their statistics over a long period, studying everything as deeply as possible. The Liverpool band will likely be the first to come out from those mega selling artists yet!

      1. Hi dear MJD !!!

        Thank you for answering me. I also believe that The Beatles are still the first artists to have sold more records than all, in fact, in your old website that was “fan of music” you show in your graph that six albums of The Beatles were present in the top 100 best-selling albums of all time.
        Albums that were present The Beatles 1, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Abbey Road, 1962-1966 (The Red Album), 1967-1970 (The Blue Album), The Beatles (White Album).
        I hope that by the end of October you realize CSPC analysis of the Fab Four (The Beatles) !!!

    1. Hello Teresa,

      Sadly this is a fact pretty undeniable. In English-speaking countries, Fleetwood Mac is the most popular of the three bands but all are just as well known as everybody know them. In other areas yet, Fleetwood Mac are not even close. As an example, I’m from France, while everyone know ABBA or Police it is highly unlikely that 10% of the population know Fleetwood Mac, the real number is likely from 1% to 5% of awareness among the general public. This situation is the same in most European countries – almost all except German-based language countries like Germany or Netherlands – and even truer in Latin America or in Asia. In those places, billions of people knowing ABBA but not Fleetwood Mac.

      This lower overall awareness about the band just make their sales all the more impressive. Seeing Rumours destroying albums like Led Zeppelin IV, The Joshua Tree, Appetite For Destruction or Nevermind is a real trademark of its unlimited attractiveness.

      1. Highly unlikely? Well, what is your study based on? Lol! I’m not putting down Abba or The Police but cmon? I don’t even know the names of the people in Abba! I bet all these countries have heard of let’s say for instance, STEVIE NICKS? Just saying. Then they would of course associate her with the band Fleetwood Mac.

        1. Errr I’m also from France and most people definately don’t know who Fleetwood Mac are, let alone Stevie Nicks. Everybody knows Abba and The Police though.

        2. Teresa,

          On your next trip to a non-English speaking country, just feel free to ask who “Fleetwood Mac” are, most people won’t be able to answer you. I posted this analysis in Chartsinfrance website, that is the main charts-related music forum of the country, and most comments were how impressive their sales are considering they never heard about this group. This is France, one of the top 5 markets in the World. Just think about Asian or Latin American countries.

          Obviously Stevie Nicks is completely unknown in most countries of the world. As an example, her last album 24 Karat Gold went Top 10 in the US, Top 20 in UK / Australia, but then in countries like France, Italy, Spain or Mexico it failed to enter charts, even on its debut week with fans pre-orders and all the set wasn’t able to get into Top 100/200 rankings of those countries. Once again, while it may seem hard to believe from someone in the US / UK, the general public awareness outside English speaking countries is very low for Fleetwood Mac.

          1. I am from Argentina. ABBA was super massive here. My mother was a big fan in the 70s (she bought some albums)… If I ask her about Fleedwood Mac… she would say: “What is that?”
            MJD is completely right about that.

  3. Hi Guillaume!
    Can you please post the detail per country for Fleetwood Mac’s Greatest Hits?
    Thank you very much in advance!
    Tony

    1. Hi Anthony!

      Sure, the breakdown below:

      America
      – US – 10,200,000
      – Canada – 1,100,000
      Asia
      – Japan – 225,000
      Oceania
      – Australia – 825,000
      – New Zealand – 175,000
      Europe – 4,970,000
      – UK – 1,875,000
      – France – 300,000
      – Germany – 925,000
      – Italy – 225,000
      – Spain – 250,000
      – Sweden – 150,000
      – Netherland – 325,000
      – Switzerland – 75,000
      – Austria – 30,000
      World – 19,300,000

  4. I was wondering where you got some of this sales data. Some albums, like Fleetwood Mac (1968), Penguin, Heroes are Hard to Find, Fleetwood Mac (1975), Tusk, and Mirage seem to have higher sales than expected. You list Heroes at 1,000,000 units in the US, yet it hasn’t received a certification.

    1. Hi Sinny!

      As you must know certifications aren’t automatic. This is even more true for Fleetwood Mac with the messy changes of label along the years. If I would stop myself at RIAA numbers, then all studies would be useless, we would go by RIAA massively flawed all-time lists.

      Using your example, Heroes performed way bigger than Mistery to Me during their respective promotional campaigns, peaking at #34 against #67. This latter album went Gold as early as in 1976. In 1975 Heroes re-entered charts on the back of Fleetwood Mac album success. There is no doubt it crossed half a million units at some point between 1975 and 1977. With the utterly massive smash of Rumours, their catalog undoubtedly enjoyed great sales for a few years. Bare Trees for example, which sold less upon release than Heroes too and wasn’t as strong in 1975 catalog sales too still made it past 1 million by 1988.

      It is clear that Heroes hasn’t sold much post-LP era and since Reprise has been ignoring it for decades they aren’t going to certify it. Still, it has clearly sold well past Gold criteria with the most realistic estimate to date on 1 million units.

  5. Hi MJD,
    Guardians of the Galaxy has propelled Chains to popularity and the volume 2 mix tape album is still selling great. Just wondering how u going to credit it to Fleetwood? Like if e album sells 500k, how much album eq u gg to credit to them?

    1. Hi Jeff!

      Compilations / Soundtrack that aren’t related to one specific artist do not count towards their tally. Elseway, all ‘Now’ compilations among others would need to be considered too. The Chain will benefit from this exposure to increase its downloads and streams while the band best of packages are doing well right now thanks to the movie, so Fleetwood Mac are gaining still within’ their own catalog.

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