France best selling albums ever: Caravane by Raphael (2005)
2005 stands as a truly bizarre year in French music industry. In a negative note, it saw only two million selling albums being released – Reprise Des Négociations by Bénabar and Caravane by Raphael, the first time in over a decade less than three albums made it. What stood as quite strange yet is that both of those albums were released by relatively modest acts, each up to their third album, and each who needed several months to reach even Gold.
It is actually the complete Top 3 best sellers from 2005 that happen to be such unexpected smashes, as the podium is completed by Olivia Ruiz album La Femme Chocolat (which is up to 970,000 copies shipped to date), which was the follow up of an album that failed to make the Top 100 – same as Raphael own debut album.
Raphael smash was more sudden yet as the title song Caravane took France by storm as soon as it was sent to radios. The album was the definitive summer record, being #1 in both August 2005 and August 2006. In total, that’s 13 weeks at the top for this album and 77 out of its first 82 charting inside the Top 15. This stellar run was shut down by the usual 2-year limit rule while Caravane was still ranking as high as #38. After that, it continued being featured inside the Top 10 catalog chart until as late as early 2009.