France Album Sales: Madonna
When you check some charts from 30 years ago, you don’t expect to see many relevant artists in 2016 on it. In May, 17, 1986, the greatest era of Madonna’s career started as True Blue’s lead single Live To Tell debuted on the French Singles chart. If she was already a big selling pop star before that, this album has put her on the throne, a throne she has yet to leave since.
Her Top 10 hits are countless, so are her #1 albums and her Gold certifications. Great chart histories are positive but do not always reveal huge sales. So, where does Madonna stand among France’s best selling artists hierarchy and how much has her catalog sold as of now? It is time to review the impressive discography of the American superstar. Please be aware all Spotify figures refer to worldwide streaming as they only aim to display which albums still have strong catalog hits right now. Let’s go!
Very nice wok.
You have information about japan charts.
I remenber good positions osaka hot 100, tokio hot 100.
But never found about oricon internationally chart.
Do you have?
I have 526 Oricon PDF files covering every kind of data going as deep as 1980, and also comprensive Oricon rankings from late 60s to date on Excel. The PDF files can’t be searched though so it is a bit of a nightmare to go through them, especially since they are written in Japanese! Most documents are sorted by date so if you want me to look for Madonna for a given week, I can try it.
I would love to read it. 😊
I completely agree about Hard Candy. It was the turning point (or maybe even of no return), not American Life. From the cover with her fingers touching her left cheek and box – it was creepy.
The greatest mystery for me is Immaculate Collection in Billboard 200. It entered the chart a month after ther release and peaked at #2 three months after the release. Why?
Hi Anna, 3 things: 1) The Billboard date refers to the publication date of the magazine. An album released on day 1 have its first week of sales completed on day 7, the process of charts implementation brought us to ~day 10 and then time to write / produce / deliver the magazine, albums were entering charts with a “publication date” nearly 1 month after arriving to the market. That’s the only reason why TIC entered “a month after the release” as in reality it entered the first chart published after its release. 2) Soundscan, the body scanning accurately sales… Read more »
Thank you. Is it the only Diamond US album that weren’t #1 on Billboard 200? Funny it was at at first behind Vanilla Ice and then behind Mariah Carey.
Many albums went Diamond in the US without hitting #1 – in fact, Patsy Cline’s Greatest Hits went Diamond without ever entering the Billboard 200!!
I was just wondering. How does “Ray of Light” managed to be so successful in Europe when you consider most of her singles did terribly on the European charts. It seems like this album does not reflect the conventional belief that strong singles = strong album sales. It is the case in America though, as the album only managed to sell 4-5 million, which isnt really that big for Madonna standard. I hope you could explain to me how it ended being such a strong seller. Thank you in advance.
Frozen was a huge hit in Europe, blocked at #2 for several weeks almost everywhere due to My Heart Will Go On only. Not only that, it was seen as a much more mature song than her previous material, which led many consumers go by the album rather than singles when the following ones came out. Factor in the massive market in Europe by 1998 (in most countries, about 3 times bigger than in mid 80s) and you get a 7-million seller!
Do Janet Jackson’s too please 🙂
All the best
Angel was no single in France, only in a few markets like the USA. In France we did have Crazy for you during the summer which has been one of her least successful album.
Into the Groove was huge and managed to get into the French top 10 as soon as it was released, a very rare achievement at that time.
Hello again FM, During the 80s, labels were defining a list of singles to track in order to build the weekly ranking. Time to time, they were delaying the addition of a song in order to create a higher entry. It happened with several singles, most notably Kaoma hit La Lambada for which Sony tried to create a #1 debut by delaying various weeks its inclusion on charts. When they finally did, it appeared they did so too early as the song debuted at #3 before topping the ranking from its second week. Into The Groove was an other example… Read more »
Hi MJD, do you have an official page in facebook? It would be easier to follow you there. Thanks!
The website has a Twitter page since the beginning and a Facebook page has now been created. Links at the right top and bottom. All publications will be posted on each social media!
Actually there were no additional single for Hard Candy in France, after summer, until the release in December of Miles Away, without a video. About 6 months separated the 2 singles and that killed off the album which had managed to remain within the TOP 100 all along the first singles career runs.
France got the same singles as other countries – 4 Minutes, Give It 2 Me and Miles Away. In fact, Give It 2 Me was not available on physical format which is why it hasn’t chart, but it was fully promoted on radios and TVs and charted for as much as 20 weeks in the Digital chart from April to September, peaking at #11 and being #44 in the 2008 Year End Chart with close to 30,000 downloads. This single was fully responsible for the album stability during the summer.
What a great job! Thank you for this! Madonna for me is a unique album seller. I am happy that after 30+ years her NEW album “Rebel Heart” managed to sell 55.000 in France and 1.000.000 worldwide… I mean that 1 million for 2016 is a great number! Also I should add that Rebel Heart sold 1million WORLDWIDE and the sales are spread WORLDWIDE. For example Celine’s latest album might have sold 1 million but the 800k are from France and Canada. (I am exaggerating a little bit but I want you to understand my point of view). I am… Read more »
i dont think flop is the right word. u cant compare sales of ray of light to mdna or sales of true blue to rebel heart. the industry is different albums dont sell like they used to. sure some of her albums have underperformed a bit but all have made the best seller list world wide for the year they were released . great article though
Hello Kieron, I’m afraid to say it is pretty much the opposite, e.g. the likes MDNA / Rebel Heart are not bad sellers due to the bad market, instead they charted OK-ish thanks to the market. The overall collapse of sales is not equal to all type of consumers, regular buyers left the game to get into streaming, fans still pick up proper albums just like older public (the average age of CD buyers in 2015 is 48!). Thus, The flop of those latter Madonna albums don’t look as big as they really are since the overall weakness of regular… Read more »
Spotify figures don’t include all the streams. You have left out almost all Immaculate Collection- and Celebration-collection albums’ streams. For example Papa Don’t Preach’s total streams are 11,63 M ( True Blue-album: 4,02 M, Immaculate Collection-album:0,87 M, Celebration-album 6,74 M) or Like A Prayer’s total streams are 45,25 M (Like A Prayer-album: 15,93 M, Immaculate Collection-album: 0,93 M and Celebration- album 28,39 M). And so on and so on.
Of course you are correct! I voluntarily leave out live versions and remixes on most of those studies because they are pretty meaningless in the usage of streaming and add in heavy work that is thus inefficient, but Madonna songs streams have never been merged unlike most artists. I now added all studio/compilation versions together. Thanks again!