CSPC: Alicia Keys Popularity Analysis

Alicia Keys Career CSPC Results

Alicia Keys Real Picture With Mine

So, after checking all figures, how many overall album sales equivalent each Alicia Keys album achieved? Well, at this point we barely need to do the addition of all figures defined all over this article!

In the following table, all categories display figures that way, e.g. in equivalent album sales. For example, As I Am singles released in digital format sold the equivalent of 2,130,000 albums – 14,200,000 downloads with a 10 to 1,5 weighting.

As a reminder:

  • Studio Album: sales of the original album
  • Other Releases: sales of compilations generated thanks to the album
  • Physical Singles: sales of physical singles from the album (ratio 3/10)
  • Download Singles: sales of digital singles from the album (ratio 1,5/10)
  • Streaming: equivalent album sales of all the album tracks (ratio 1/1500)

This is it! For regular Chartmasters.org readers, you may be surprised at the relatively low increases from pure studio album sales to total CSPC sales. That result is mostly due to the absence of relevant other releases like strong selling compilations. While digital singles may be worth it, by themselves they aren’t strong enough to impact significantly totals of a strong album sellers.

In spite of a decreasing spiral, it is hard to highlight a precise breaking point in Alicia Keys’ popularity. Once again we can conclude on how the artist has never really disappointed her target audience of urban music followers, but instead that general public interest in that kind of music vanished year after year. No breaking point at least until Here that stands for now at a mere 8% of its predecessor’s total. The album is still quite new but things aren’t looking good.

Apart from the evolution of her popularity, we can point out the high figures of each albums on their own. The first three albums average 11,5 million equivalent album sales, not that far from, say, the average of 15 million from the first three Coldplay albums from the same period. This tops the 10 million average of Maroon 5 first three sets. This confirms Alicia Keys status among the very best sellers of the 00s. Her consistency must also be noticed. If all her albums decreased their predecessors performances, she went from 14,9 million to 5,9 million over four albums while Norah Jones for example started at 26,3 million but was down to 2,5 million by her fourth release.

In total, Alicia Keys sold 47,3 million equivalent albums. Already below artists that started years after her like Justin Bieber, Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga or even Drake, this is still a very solid tally, especially for a non-Pop/Rock artist.

Do not forget to check our amazing lists posted inside the CSPC: Data Collector which includes the full listing of all CSPC results compiled so far to better gauge her position in the history of the music industry.

As usual, feel free to comment and / or ask a question!

Sources: IFPI, Spotify, Chartmasters.org.

8 thoughts on “CSPC: Alicia Keys Popularity Analysis”

  1. Job well done again MJD! Glad you did an analysis on one of my favourite R&B artists!

    While Alicia might be under artists that debuted after her, you’re right that her total is impressive for a R&B act. Moreover, you cannot deny her consistency over the 00s. Sure, her last 2 albums are a little disappointing success wise, but that still doesn’t takes away what she has accomplished.

    I hope you will do an analysis on other R&B artists as well so we can compare them. They’ll probably be under pop/rock acts, but it’s nice to see a comparison between R&B acts like Brandy, Aaliyah, Monica etc. The only R&B acts of the 00s i can think of that can rival pop acts are Usher and Beyonce, so i hope you can do an analysis on them two.

    Finally, looking forward for your analysis on Whitney Houston and David Bowie. Interested to see how Nippy rivals both Celine and Madonna. Of course, i hope you will do one for Mariah as well, so the Big 4 will be complete.

    Keep up the good work!

  2. Hi dear MJD !!!

    congratulations for the site and also for CSPC analyisis of Alicia Keys.
    Then after Alicia Keys I think you will analyze the Rolling Stones, I guessed right?

  3. By the way, MJD, do you mind posting Alicia’s Unplugged album album sales breakdown? I know it’s not a big seller, but i would really appreciate it if you posted your breakdown for it. Thanks!

  4. Hi everyone!

    Here are the 10 Alicia’s tracks that have generated the most sales:

    1 2001 Fallin’ [Songs in A Minor] – 9,620,000
    2 2004 If I Ain’t Got You [The Diary of Alicia Keys] – 7,160,000
    3 2007 No One [As I Am] – 4,560,000
    4 2012 Girl On Fire [Girl on Fire] – 1,900,000
    5 2009 Empire State Of Mind (Part II) Broken Down [The Element of Freedom] – 1,730,000
    6 2001 A Woman’s Worth [Songs in A Minor] – 1,570,000
    7 2009 Empire State Of Mind [Orphan] – 1,360,000
    8 2009 Try Sleeping With A Broken Heart [The Element of Freedom] – 1,230,000
    9 2004 You Don’t Know My Name [The Diary of Alicia Keys] – 1,010,000
    10 2007 Like You’ll Never See Me Again [As I Am] – 690,000

    The first 5 tracks come from 5 different albums, that confirms what Guillaume wrote in the article: there is one big hit per album, and several good successes.

    “Empire State of Mind” is only #7. It is because this track is not in an album by Alicia Keys. So it do not generate studio album sales for her.

    If you have any questions / remarks, do not hesitate to let a comment!

  5. Hi, MJD.

    Really enjoyed this breakdown. I’d really like you to do one for Usher next, since he’s another R&B icon experiencing a downward trajectory like Alicia.

    Also, would your sales figure report be considered legitimate enough to be used as a citation for entries such as Wikipedia? Your work really serves as a great source to reference, especially considering how long it takes other music publications to announce updates on sales figures.

    Thanks, and keep going!

    1. Hello Noah!

      No doubt I’ll be working on Usher at some point as Confessions belongs to the most successful albums of the 00s!

      I don’t doubt my figures are way more accurate than the huge majority of the information available on Wikipedia, it is up to them to decide if my website is legitimate enough to be used as a source though!

  6. Hi MJD! I’ve been checking the RIAA website and wanted to ask you about Alicia Key’s single sales.

    RIAA: Gold (500,000) digital

    My Boo-1,900,000
    RIAA: Gold (500,000) digital
    Platinum (1,000,000) Mastertones
    Only 400,000 for the rest of the world, when it was Top 10/20 in several countries?

    Could you explain this please? And if it isn’t too much trouble, do you have any Soundscan sales for Alicia Key’s singles sales? Please and thank you!

    1. Hi Raffi!

      The RIAA first introduced digital certifications in 2004 when the market was just getting started. Thus, they have set criteria in line with that market – 100,000 units for Gold and 200,000 units for Platinum. Those levels remained true until the end of July 2006 when they were removed, adjusting all them to standard levels of 500,000 and 1 million units.

      Up to date, the RIAA database is still displaying those old entries with the automatic amount, e.g. 500,000 and 1 million units, but records like Karma and My Boo got awarded as per former criterias only.

      When I get home I’ll check for detailed information that I have.

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