Destroying Myths: related to Elvis Presley

Memphis Tennessee Elvis Presley Graceland mansion estate in 2015 Home furniture awards rooms Music vintage old


It’s often the first step of studies about Presley‘s sales, to check existing similar studies. One has to be careful about them since they are strongly biased more often than not. They are also compiled by fans with no background in similar researches which can only lead to misunderstood data and flawed views. I may remind that what’s true for Presley is also true for every other major selling artist. The Beatles haven’t sold 1 billion either, Michael Jackson‘s Thriller is nowhere near 109 million pure sales just like Britney Spears hasn’t sold 105 million albums, just to point out some of the most frequent myths repeated here and there.

The second notable conclusion from this article is the fact that Presley‘s catalog is now fully up to date as far as RIAA certifications of physical singles and albums are concerned. After the 18 awards that were validated in March 2018, it is now impossible to point out a single album that still requires an update. We can also notice that formerly missing or disqualified sales have been included through the years. There is still some albums subject to these rules, like post-1972 Camden LPs, but they are unlikely to be high enough to be recertified even if all their sales were eligible.

Now that we explained most historical RIAA rules that impacted the King’s awards since his debut, you can entirely understand them. We will use this opportunity in our next article to publish a detailed breakdown of the real number of albums certified in the US by the RIAA with various additional parameters and annotations. Stay tuned!


Sources: RIAA, Billboard, Discogs, RCA, EIN, Ernst Jorgensen, elvispresleyshop, elvisoncd.

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Let me get this right, Chartmasters have managed to get all the sales records for those that RIAA were unable to confirm since the 50s?, the figures won’t include the sales from independent outlets since his death or bootleg albums especially during the 70s, this figures are just an estimation, we will never know the actual figures for sure


I would also add that articles on Elvis over the last 10 years have been biased, Billboard does not even record his stats prior to 2018 so how can we ever believe the figures given with accuracy. Will these figures be released to other websites such as wikipedia? My guess is no as no-one actually knows the actual figures with certainty…


I could’nt find Elvis US singles sold.


Regarding Soundscan, Billboard’s method of tracking album sales (and not the RIAA’s), Soundscan is not available in every store that sells recordings. It has never been used in Wal Mart, so there are sales missed through that avenue. That presented problems as Wal Mart became the store authorized to sell albums by the Eagles or Garth Brooks. When the Eagles released their album “Long Road Out of Eden,” Billboard had to mend its rules so the Eagles’ album was able to be the number one album in Billboard. Sales through online outlets such as Amazon and Barnes and Noble also… Read more »

Vernon Smith

Elvis actual sales info, sans the joke that the riaa actually is….ttps://