France Album Sales: Mylène Farmer

L’Autre (1991) Era

March 1991. It has been less than a year since the last single aimed to promote En Concert was released when the new one Désenchantée came out. No need to say the single and its parent album L’Autre were heavily anticipated. The single lasted an impressive 9 weeks at #1 while L’Autre on its side dominated the Album ranking during an incredible 20 weeks.

One may say end of story as numbers speak for themselves. As explained on the detailed article about this album yet, the album had no competition at all during its long run at the top and sold less than what’s suggested by those positions. This era was still flawless. Each subsequent single – Regrets #3, Je T’Aime Mélancolie #3, Beyond My Control #8 – went Top 10 and the album remained relevant until mid-1992. Shipping 350,000 units within’ three weeks, it shifted 825,000 copies by the end of 1991, 1,15 million by May 1992 and 1,25 million by the end of 1992.

For all artists with a strong fanbase who collect all their favorite artists items, the target of labels is to issue as many records as possible. In France, there is two artists enjoying way more active collectable items purchasers than anyone else, Johnny Hallyday and Mylène Farmer. The impact on the latter was the 1992 release of Dance Remix, a collection of remixes as it is made clear by the package title. Promoted by #9 single Que Mon Coeur Lâche, the set wasn’t eligible for the main album chart. By 1992, the Compilation chart, which encapsulate both multi-artists compilations as well as greatest hits type packages, had been created. The remix album charted at #3 there during the holiday season behind best of albums from Joe Cocker and Police. Its late 2xGold certification, 200,000 units by April 1994 do not mean the level was reached at that time. Indeed, Polydor did no audit at all in 1992 / 1993 until certifying all best of type albums on May 25 1994, an audit on which was included Dance Remix.

The interesting point is that most of those Polydor compilations certified in April 1994 were exactly those who competed into charts against Mylène Farmer album. Below is this list of records with their ranking on 1992 Christmas frame:

  • #3 PoliceGreatest Hits – Platinum: 300,000
  • #4 Mylène Farmer – Dance Remix – 2xGold: 200,000
  • #5 Bee GeesSuccess Story – 2xGold: 200,000
  • #6 SupertrampThe Very Best Of – Gold: 100,000

The Bee Gees set was released one month earlier during which it was #2 so it hasn’t necessarily sold less than Dance Remix. Supertramp record was released the exact same week and charted lower all along but not by much. Sales by April 1994 certification can be estimated on 230,000 units for Mylène Farmer package.

Top 3 Most Streamed Tracks on Spotify
  1. Désenchantée – 2,239,000
  2. Je T’Aime Mélancolie – 293,000
  3. Regrets – 267,000

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