Original Album Sales – Comments
1995 Pies Descalzos – 3,700,000
1998 Dónde Están los Ladrones? – 4,380,000
2001 Laundry Service – 12,630,000
2005 Fijación Oral, Vol. 1 – 3,590,000
2005 Oral Fixation, Vol. 2 – 5,000,000
2009 She Wolf – 1,780,000
2010 Sale el Sol – 2,610,000
2014 Shakira – 860,000
2017 El Dorado – 230,000
At almost 35 million over 9 albums, the average sales of Shakira albums isn’t among the very top ones. Obviously, we can’t ignore five of them where Spanish records yet. An interesting result is that those records haven’t sold that much less than the English ones. At 14,51 million, they stand up well against the 20,27 million units sold by the four English sets.
They are also more stable with all of them except the last one sitting between 2,6 million and 4,5 million units sold. This enables me to point out an element I rarely mentioned, the fact A-League artists have sales much more secured than one-time smash acts or B-League artists. In English-speaking countries or in Asia for example, Shakira belongs to the latter category. As a result, she needs big hits to benefit from the highest level of exposure. In Hispanic countries though, she is an A-League star, meaning she will be promoted at the highest possible scale no matter what. That’s how last Adele album 25 crushed albums from anyone else so effortlessly, because in our day and age she is the only global A-League artist.
We studied Enrique Iglesias previously, finding out his first two Spanish albums from mid-90s sold slightly more than 4 million units, making them some of the biggest Spanish albums ever. Shakira‘s first two did just about the same. Just like him, the turn of the century gave her the opportunity to confirm this status in the world. She did it incredibly well with Laundry Service. While she had various up and downs since, it feels like the Colombian star can still drop a giant smash anytime.