Yearly Most Successful Female Album: The beginning (1960-1982)

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1977 – Linda Ronstadt – Simple Dreams

A confirmed super seller in the US, Ronstadt had one more strong album in Simple Dreams. This 5 weeks #1 album remains one of her highest certified studio sets with a 3xPlatinum award in the US. The growing market overseas also led majors to start promoting their artists more and more in countries like France, Germany and Japan. If this album wasn’t a blockbuster there,it wasn’t unnoticed either and provided it a couple more millions of album sales.

The hit single Blue Bayou from this era remains her signature song. It wasn’t part of her Greatest Hits though since it came out just before, a la The Eagles with Hotel California. Still, her Greatest Hits 2 sold almost 3 millions units, plus more subsequent compilations came out, all of which had in Blue Bayou their strongest element. Simple Dreams is over 8 million equivalent album sales created, a great showing for an artist often regarded as an American-only singer.


1977 was the year of bands with female voices. In Europe, ABBA was everywhere. Boney M was exploding too. In the US, Fleetwood Mac dominated the year like no one else did since the BeatlesYes Sir, I Can Boogie by the Spanish female group Baccara was one of the biggest global smashes of the year. Among solo females, Barbra Streisand and Diana Ross continued to be prolific and successful, although not in the same scale as Ronstadt. In North America, Debby Boone was off to a strong start with a 10-weeks #1 in the Hot 100, You Light Up My Life, the longest running chart topper of the decade. One more promising young artist was Donna Summer with her disco smash I Feel Love.

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For 1970 would Joni Mitchell’s Ladies of the Canyon. not be a contender as it contains her biggest hit “Big Yellow Taxi” which has over 117m streams on so would have a decent share of her compilation sales as compared to Diana’s debut as Ain’t No Mountain High Enough doesn’t even have 50m compared to Diana and Supremes tracks which have many more


Kind of disappointing how low Barbra Streisand stream is today considering how huge she was back then. Yet today even somebody like Cher and Tina Turner and Dolly Parton would outstream her by a significant margin, when I dont think any of those girls are even close to the total CSPC that she managed to produce.


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