France best selling albums ever: Paradize by Indochine (2002)
Certifications perfectly followed the album trajectory as shown below.
16/03/2002: 3-6-7-10-6-6-(Gold)–7-4-*2*-3-4-4-4-5-4-5-5-(Platinum)–6-6-6-7-5-5-3-5-3-4-6-9-14-18-21-25-24-(2xP)-24-27-34-40-38-27-28-31 (04/01/2003) 28-29-33-16-20-10-7-5-10-11-12-12-16-18-20-23-28-37-41-50-54-52-57-56-66-60-47-38-37-35-29-29-17-12-21-20-15-26-42-49-34-52-55-68-76-59-75-78-80-88-(3xP)-97-90 (03/01/2004) 81-93-81-87-86-96-73-54-62-73-54-62-73-64-89 (109 weeks) (Diamond on 20/10/2004)
The case seems simple with certifications coming very late into the chart run, one person not experienced enough would conclude the album sold ‘just’ over a million by the end of 2004.
France is obviously a smaller country than the US. There is far less albums released to track, thus, majors had the habit to do large audits two or three times a year rather than updating a few albums closely followed and ignore others. Below are all Sony Music (label of Indochine) audits from Paradize release to its Diamond certification:
- 16/04/2002 – 12 albums certified, Paradize goes Gold. Shipment over 100,000 ; under 200,000
- 10/07/2002 – 12 albums certified, Paradize goes Double Gold and Platinum. Shipment over 300,000 ; under 600,000
- 05/11/2002 – 20 albums certified, Paradize goes Double Platinum. Shipment over 600,000 ; under 900,000
- 17/12/2002 – 5 albums certified, Paradize is not certified. Shipment under 900,000
- 08/07/2003 – 11 albums certified, Paradize is not certified. Shipment under 900,000
- 17/12/2003 – 23 albums certified, Paradize goes Triple Platinum. Shipment over 900,000 ; under 1,000,000
- 05/05/2004 – 14 albums certified, Paradize is not certified. Shipment under 1,000,000
- 19/10/2004 – 16 albums certified, Paradize goes Diamond. Shipment over 1,000,000
The fact May 5 2004 audit hasn’t push Paradize over a million means it wasn’t much higher in any case when certified Diamond, considering it sold about 50,000 copies between both dates, implying a maximum of 1,05 million copies sold up to its Diamond award. I’m detailing Indochine album example yet as this logic is really important and will bring relevant changes to some albums figures. On the case of Paradize, what is clear is that 3x Platinum award was late by a good two months. Indeed, retail sales alone between 2nd and 3rd Platinum awards exceeding 350,000 copies and 2x Platinum award itself wasn’t issued instantly when the album has hit 600,000 copies sold. Realistically, the album sold 950,000 by its 3x Platinum certification and was truly nearing the million by the 05/05/2004 audit.
The album has been a decent catalog seller. In 2012, a 10 year anniversary entered charts at an impressive #3 overall position. Release to date estimates below:
- by 19/10/2004: 1,040,000, plus 20,000 end of the year
- 2005: 20,000
- 2006: 25,000
- 2007-2008: 15,000
- 2009: 15,000
- 2010: 10,000
- 2011: 10,000
- 2012: 40,000
- 2013-2015: 20,000
- 2/3CD boxes: 10,000
Net shipment as of the end of 2015 is estimated at 1,225,000 copies.
Please note that I’m not adding an extra 15-20,000 copies for additional shipment as the bulk of sales, which happened in 2002-2004, are already estimated using shipment data.
As usual, feel free to comment and / or ask a question!