CSPC: Johnny Hallyday Popularity Analysis

RIP Johnny Hallyday

Digital Singles Sales – Songs over 15,000

01 – Je Te Promets – 140,000
02 – L’envie – 120,000
03 – Quelque Chose De Tennessee – 75,000
04 – Requiem pour un fou – 65,000
05 – Diego Libre Dans Sa Tête – 60,000
06 – Que Je T’Aime – 60,000
07 – Vivre Pour Le Meilleur – 60,000
08 – Allumer Le Feu – 55,000
09 – Marie – 45,000
10 – Le pénitencier – 45,000
11 – Sang Pour Sang – 45,000
12 – Gabrielle – 35,000
13 – Laura – 35,000
14 – J’ai Oublié De Vivre – 30,000
15 – J’oublierai Ton Nom – 25,000
16 – La Musique Que J’aime – 25,000
17 – Retiens La Nuit – 25,000
18 – Ma Gueule – 20,000
19 – Noir c’est noir – 15,000
20 – Mon plus beau Noël – 15,000
21 – Un Jour Viendra – 15,000
22 – Derrière L’Amour – 15,000

Barely Top 20 among his highest selling physical singles, Je Te Promets is the leading force in his catalog currently. The track has moved 140,000 digital units since the introduction of iTunes in France way back in 2005. Please keep in mind that this figure excludes sales following Johnny‘s passing that saw this track shoot to #1 for two weeks.

The case of L’Envie is even more extreme. Tied at #84 among the singer’s top selling hits upon release, it is the second strongest catalog seller of his catalog in the digital area. Incredibly enough for a singer who released 52 12-inch albums plus 11 10-inch LPs, his two most remembered songs are both included on his 1986 effort Gang. This shows one more time the golden touch of Jean-Jacques Goldman, the author of those two hits. As if it wasn’t enough, both Laura and J’oublierai Ton Nom, at #13 and #15 in this ranking, belong to the same studio album.

At #3 comes Quelque Chose De Tennessee from Gang‘s predecessor, Rock’n’Roll Attitude. The immense popularity from songs of those two albums explains why their 2CD package Paroles d’Hommes sold upwards of 400,000 units in 1995. The song is only his 45th top selling physical single, showing how much the market had already moved onto albums at the time. One more song by Michel Berger, Diego Libre Dans Sa Tête, features inside the Top 5 although failing to be a part of Johnny‘s personal Top 100 physical singles. This single, written for France Gall in 1981, was covered and released after a rendition from Johnny live in 1990. It was added as an extra track of Rock’n’roll Attitude in the Paroles d’Hommes set which thus included 4 out of the 5 best tunes of the singer.

The remaining songs inside the Top 10 like Requiem pour un fou, Que Je T’Aime, Marie and Allumer Le Feu were big both upon release as physical singles and as catalog download tracks. There is at least one song from each decade going from the 60s to the 00s inside the Top 9 which perfectly summarizes how massive the rocker remained all along his career.

Elsewhere songs like J’ai un problèmeOh ! Ma jolie Sarah and Noël interdit, are all among his Top 10 physical sellers, although they haven’t retained much popularity up to now.

In total, the singer sold over 1,4 million units, a tremendous tally considering that the French market never got into legal downloads.

4 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Nathan Abramson

I counted 10 million less. Are you counting EP’s as singles?


I’ve read that Mon pays c’est l’amour has already sold 890,000 (!!!) copies in France in the weeks since its release. Of course, given the circumstances and Johnny Hallyday’s stature that doesn’t actually feel too surprising, but comprehensively speaking, how do you see it performing in the long-run compared to the rest of his discography? Also, do you have a ballpark figure of how much his CSPC results may have increased in the year since his passing?


Thank you! I wasn’t aware of all the TV promotion, that does sound a bit ridiculous haha.
If he sold that much in 2 weeks, he must have totally crushed his own record of highest first-week sales in France, which is fantastic but it seems like it would be impossible for that to happen if he were still alive.


I’ve just gone through it, too quickly, but I’m going to look at it more carefully. That’s already the best level of Johnny sales research I’ve ever seen. This is a titanic job and must be difficult, as there is so much missing data. I am fairly familiar with Johnny’s career and have read quite a few books, some of which contain first-hand accounts. His artistic directors, record company heads. Everyone agrees that some times were more difficult. 66/67,74/75,81/84. Concerts were not always full and the hits were rarer. Outside, from what I’ve seen, it’s not always reflected in your… Read more »


France Gall has died. I believe she’s among those who had the most successful french songs abroad in the 60’s, isn’t she ?


Je vous suis très reconnaissant pour la qualité de votre travail. Fan de Johnny depuis toujours, je savais qu’il cumulait des chiffres de ventes impressionnants. Pouvoir précisément connaître les chiffres de tous ses opus est incroyable……… Grâce à vous, certains peuvent mesurer l’impact de cette immense star qui restera gravé à jamais dans notre cœur…..