CSPC: U2 Popularity Analysis

U2

U2 are without any doubt one of the biggest groups of all time after almost 4 decades together. They are a great study case as they have been pretty much the greatest selling band ever since they formed.

Their success can be explained in several different ways. As seen with Metallica, U2 seem to be a case of an act being at the right time and the right place to capitalize the best possible conditions, including huge market’s size for the most important part of their career, that is from 1987 to 2000, plus a great level of airplay and praise from the critics. All resulted, of course, in massive sales.

But not everything was easy for them. On the contrary, they were a bit of a slow burner, getting bigger and bigger with every new release until they finally broke all barriers of success in 1987 with The Joshua Tree, their biggest classic album, after a string of albums that added great sales little by little. It was quite a progressive highway to stardom, which means that the band needed to be patient.

Whichever way you look at it, the Irish group are an incredible act to fully examine, and more now when they seem not to be at their peak and they aren’t equally talked about as in previous years. A CSPC analysis on their whole catalogue sounds like a great journey!

As a reminder for users who are not yet familiar with the CSPC idea you do not need to worry, it is quite simple as it only consists in merging every format sales an artist has been getting and attributing them to respective studio albums. We will start by focusing on raw data, setting how much each album sold. Then, we will check sales of each track from those albums on each format – physical, digital and streaming – and weight them to value those figures on a par with album sales. To complete the study, we will study sales of the all compilations, live albums and music videos they dropped. Once all the raw data is set, we will only need to apply appropriate weighting to get the overall picture of the classic band’s career results.

Said that, let’s get into their deep discography and see the results!

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Smiley

What are the chances that U2 will break through the 500 ASR barrier in the near future?

This is obviously dependent on how well they are doing compared to Michael Jackson as the bench mark?

MJD

Hi Smiley!

It depends on many factors so it’s difficult to tell. They grow about 2.7 million streams a day compared to Jackson’s 4.5 million. With features, the gap is a bit higher. Since Jackson does so on the back of a shorter discography, it means both his CSPC and equivalent discography sales are climbing fairly faster, so I wouldn’t expect U2 to get closer to him on ASR, at least not without new albums.

blah

Hi was wondering if I could please get a breakdown of the best of 1980-1990 album country by country, like it is done for the studio albums . Thanks

ojd

this needs an update with a biggest tracks page

Matrix

Update U2’s CSPC with “Songs of Experience” album released 2017!

Matrix

Give us CSPC for another famous irish rock star…………..VAN MORRISON!

Joe

And here i would love to see biggest tracks list. It would be great if you can do it like it is for RHCP or Metallica with Stones, Zeppelin, U2.

Anthony Blanchard

Hi Joe! Here is their top 20: 1. 1987 – U2 – With Or Without You [The Joshua Tree] – 23,430,000 2. 1983 – U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday [War] – 16,800,000 3. 2000 – U2 – Beautiful Day [All That You Can’t Leave Behind] – 14,770,000 4. 1991 – U2 – One [Achtung Baby] – 14,750,000 5. 1987 – U2 – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For [The Joshua Tree] – 13,420,000 6. 1984 – U2 – Pride (in The Name Of Love) [The Unforgettable Fire] – 7,740,000 7. 1983 – U2 – New Year’s Day [War]… Read more »

Joe

Great! Huge thx! 🙂 All I need now is Santana, Clapton, Van Halen, ZZ Top and Jimi Hendrix 😀 but I know it is a lot of work to do to get this happen. But anyway- do you think those acts are going to be included this year? Or i need to wait a little more? 🙂

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