CSPC: Bruce Springsteen Popularity Analysis

Bruce Springsteen

Full Length related record Sales

It sounds fairly logical to add together weighted sales of one era – studio album, physical singles, downloads, streams – to get the full picture of an album’s popularity. For older releases though, they also generate sales of various live, music videos and compilation albums.

All those packaging-only records do not create value, they exploit the value originating from the parent studio album of each of its tracks instead. Inevitably, when such compilations are issued, this downgrades catalog sales of the original LP. Thus, to perfectly gauge the worth of these releases, we need to re-assign sales proportionally to its contribution of all the compilations which feature its songs. The following table explains this method.

Remaining Long Format – Part 1 – Compilations 1

How to understand this table? If you check for example the Greatest Hits compilation line, those figures mean it sold 15,350,000 units worldwide. The second statistics column means all versions of all the songs included on this package add for 586,000 equivalent album sales from streams of all types.

The second part on the right of the table shows how many equivalent streams are coming from each original album, plus the share it represents on the overall package. Thus, streaming figures tell us songs from The River are responsible for 18% of Greatest Hits track list attractiveness. This means it generated 2,719,000 of its 15,350,000 album sales and so forth for the other records.

A pattern appears from the distribution of sales of those four releases. Born in the U.S.A. is the main appeal provider of the singer-songwriter catalog while both Born to Run and The River complete the leading trio.

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Innocent Eyes

You know me too well haha 😉

Well, I must admit that I found that 9xP cert. a bit fishy at first, particularly since it came so soon after the 4xP. I thought though that it may have been due to unaudited sales (a bit like how John Farnham’s Whispering Jack jumped from 17 to 24x Plat. from 1997 to 2006).

But your explanation does make sense and would perhaps explain why Greatest Hits has never been re-certified in the 2017 audit when Sony even updated his singles certs.

Innocent Eyes

Fantastic job MJD!

I was wondering though. Didn’t you make a slight mistake for Greatest Hits in Australia? You have it at 420,000 units but it was certified 9 x Platinum in 2009 (630,000 units). Given it’s been a solid catalog seller Down Under, I would expect it to be very close to 770,000 units.

What do you think?

Anon.

This is very off-topic sorry, but what is your opinion on the new trend of claiming Chinese sales?

Like here
https://www.ukmix.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=121586&p=6501788&hilit=china#p6501788
https://www.ukmix.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=24&t=121586&p=6517071&hilit=china#p6517071

Are those real and reliable sales? Seems sketchy.

borderwolf

Hi! You wrote “With some 2,2 million album sales in Norway, he is also the all-time leader of the country among non-Scandinavian acts.”
Do you have a list of Best Selling “non-Scandinavian acts” in Norway?

borderwolf

Mmmhhhh… I can never to cheat you!
Ahahah! 🙂

In any case, great job, my friend!

Trond Grønvold

You’re doing a great job.
Love reading this kind of articles.

But, why don’t you post Norwegian stats??

Dan

One King, one Prince, one King of Pop, one Voice, one The Boss and one Queen.

Brianna

Hey MJD,

Along with successful male artists, are you planning on studying Garth brooks? I’m pretty sure he has the most diamond certified albums in the US. It would be interesting to see how the country singer performed worldwide

Raffi

Hey MJD! Great Job on this analysis of The Boss! I always wanted to know how big Born In The USA was since it produced 7 Top 10 hits in the US! Regarding that 1984 album, I expected album sales in the US higher (20m+). 16m is similar to what Prince sold there with Pruple Rain, right? Its sales outside that market, most notably Europe, is fantastic though! I never expected 8m+ in that continent! It did wonders in Oceania as well! Speaking of Europe, I’m positively surprised by how well Springsteen did there! Almost 50m+ albums sold is higher… Read more »

Gary Hudson

This is interesting as far as it goes, and represents a lot of hard work, but it’s not a measure of popularity, as claimed. It’s a sales chart, which does an admirable job of weighing the value of different formats, but there are other factors determining popularity, many of them subjective: for example, many people who bought Born in the USA believing (in a misguided Reagan/Mondale way) that it was tub-thumping patriotism rather than a more nuanced critique (!) don’t like Bruce any more because of his politics. The biggest factor missing from this analysis though is live ticket sales.… Read more »

Kurt m

Springsteen is 3rd in box office, behind only the Rolling Stones and possibly U2. Springsteen total concert gross is approximately $1.8 billion , not including over $100 million from broadway.

Yog

Please do prince.

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