CSPC: Eagles Popularity Analysis

The Eagles

40 years ago the success of the Eagles‘ fifth album titled Hotel California was so massive that the industry was looking for new words to define it. Along with Stevie Wonder‘s Songs In The Key of Life, Fleetwood Mac‘s Rumours and Frampton Comes Alive!, it sold over6 million units during its first year. While the RIAA had introduced the Platinum Award some months earlier, these industry gorillas opened the door for multi-Platinum discs that would arrive in 1984 for the first time.

By then the Eagles had already split although they only released one more studio album, 1979’s The Long Run, since their global breakthrough. Their former members Joe Walsh, Don Henley and Glenn Frey were successfully going solo. This brief period of success shouldn’t be enough to make this band one of the all-time greats. The Eagles are inevitable in every Classic Rock bands list though. The song Hotel California is an absolute classic, but in various countries there is nothing else from them that is popular. Just one song doesn’t transform an average act into a giant rock band, the Animals and Derek & the Dominos can confirm that. What’s the truth then? How does Hotel California stand against the biggest albums of all-time? How many units has Their Greatest Hits 1971-75 sold, the album that was long the front runner in terms of Platinum awards in the US?

As usual, I’ll be using the Commensurate Sales to Popularity Concept in order to relevantly gauge their results. This concept will not only bring you sales information for all Eagles‘ albums, physical and download singles, as well as audio and video streaming, but it will also determine their true popularity. If you are not yet familiar with the CSPC method, the next page explains it with a short video. I fully recommend watching the video before getting into the sales figures. Of course, if you are a regular visitor feel free to skip the video and get into the figures.

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i dont wanna sound redundant, but how on earth can their album outdo Thriller. It sells doesnt sell more and Michael’s streams on all platforms are multiple times bigger then theirs and they count more since streaming is getting equal weighting in the RIAA than sales from what I know.


I will leave it up to the experts on this site, but the RIAA’s fascination/obsession with The Eagles seems a bit suspect to me. I never see The Eagles albums in the Top 100 on iTunes, or anywhere near the top on Spotify, their Youtube videos are barely viewed. I would like a detailed analysis how Hotel California shot up 10 million albums since 2006, and how Greatest Hits went from 29 million in 2006 to 38 million in 2018. That’s a huge jump for an older album that is nowhere to be seen on online digital platforms. Nelson Soundscan… Read more »


Exactly. Thriller outstreams Greatest hits easily on Spotify 3 to 1 but we are supposed to believe GH is ahead of Thriller by 5 million units? Here’s the current streaming numbers for Thriller and GH: WBSS 49 869144 BBM 12 580 637 GIM 30943114 Thriller 135 803 854 Beat it 243 963 367 Billie Jean 401252 104 Human Nature 43 597 2012 PYT 114 426 988 Lady in my life 12 639 786 1 045 076 206 Take it Easy 101 447 814 Witchy Woman 16 438 094 Lying Eyes 30 072 831 Already Gone 12 933 760 Desperado 42… Read more »

Donald Miller

Those increases will put the Eagles at least even with AC/DC overall.

Tom Riise

The Eagles Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975 is now certified 38 times platinum in the US.
Hotel California also got certified 26 times platinum.




Chart performance and streaming numbers do not support these certifications. It’s bogus. How could Greatest hits sell 9 million units since 2006 when Thriller outstreams it and during the same period GH was not even in the TOP 50 on the year end catalog chart except in 2016. Adele sold less than 400 000 of 21 in 2015 and with that it was the best selling catalog album of that year. Eagles was not even in the Top 50. Year end Top 50 catalog chart 2006 2007 2008 2009 Thriller No 2 2010 Thriller No 7 2011 2012 2013 Thriller… Read more »


Holy crap……..is that accurate???? I saw it on RIAA. That’s a HUGE update we need


Pictures of the two Eagles album sleeves are disappeared. On The Border (1974) and One Of These Nights (1975). Or at least I can’t see them. 🙂


As a side note: Song ‘Hotel California’ is based on/or stolen from a Jethro Tull song ‘We Used To Know’. Ian Anderson a frontman of Jethro Tull said once in interview: The Eagles used to be the opening act for Jethro Tull back in around 1970, when we used to play ‘We Used To Know’. And a year or so later they came out with Hotel California. I noticed the fact that they were very similar. So, if the Eagles decide to give me the royalties from Hotel California, I want you to know I’m going to take you all… Read more »


Really? I found only a little similar between two song.

Geoffrey H.

Would be interesting to see Elton John next.


I’ve heard Garth Brooks got a lot of his awards for shipments in the U.S., not for sales.
Curious to see what his actual sales are…………instead of all the unsold albums that went in the discount rack like a dented can of beans (to quote Billy Joel “The Entertainer” loosely)


Cant believe their album sales in the US beat Michael Jackson and Madonna album sales by a long shot.


Eagles have a very american classic rock n’ roll sound, in my opinion is most successful type of music in US, fans of this type of music in the US are usually very loyal. Aerosmith, Van Halen and Journey are anothers bands that have a very American Rock n’ roll sound and they sold GAZILLIONS of records in US.
Btw, I realized that the US is a country that follows trends, Michael Jackson and Madonna went out of style very fast, while in the rest of the world they continued to sell VERY well.


Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR) is THE epitome of american classic rock n’ roll. And maybe the Grateful Dead, too.


This. Pop acts dont last very long in the US. If they want a long and successful catalog its best if the work ww.


That’s not even remotely true. Michael sold well for years and his music is still downloaded and streamed. The difference is the Eagles, and many rock and country artists, lend more to an American audience. Michael made a name for himself as a solo artist when rock music was huge in the ‘70s. Michael’s six adult studios albums outsold the Eagles globally. That’s not counting his childhood solo work with Motown, compilations, or posthumous records. He probably gives them real competition even in the US if you are only looking at studio albums. Please don’t compare Michael and Madonna. People… Read more »


Michael Jackson and Madonna are definitely comparable. Michael was super2 huge, but he released very few albums. Madonna was not nearly as big as Michael at her peak, but she definitely have more longevity than Michael and she beat all other rock stars except for the Beatles and Elvis. Madonna started her career, far weaker than Michael. But she has catch up with him. Stop trying to discredit her achievement. Let us not even forget the fact that Madonna is still alive and she is the queen of reinvention. Who knows she might have another comeback in the coming years,… Read more »


I wasn’t trying to discredit Madonna. She’s obviously successful; the numbers speak for themselves. Perhaps it was a poor choice of words to say they aren’t comparable, but I stand by the statement that her career doesn’t match his just because she beat others. That’s not an insult. He’s always had a longer reach. What you mentioned about him having fewer albums is exactly my point. His music made a bigger splash and continues to sell. That distinction isn’t just between him and Madonna, it’s him and everyone. That doesn’t take away from her status as the “queen of reinvention.”… Read more »


Unlike female best-seller, major of pop, band and male almost rocker


When you compare how many – the number – major albums MJ released to the Eagles or Elvis or Garth Brooks or Barbara, in average sales, MJ RULES.

MJ aka Sony (Motown) has not released GHs comps and reeditions of yet released albums, and re-released GHs and various compilations of yet released albums and greatest hits…., you see the point?

Lets count just officials releases….

Most of people do know most of MJs hits, most of people do not know most of the Eagles songs, and we have to take it worldwide, the US market is not the whole world….


Really impressive numbers! I’m wondering whether they sold more albums (and overall) than Creedence Clearwater Revival ? And, thanks again for the great work MJD!