Harry Styles is No. 1 with record total vinyl sales

Is 500,000 the new million?

As a shortcut to successfully selling albums in the age of streaming, this may now be the case. The latest release to hit this adjusted milestone is Harry Styles’ “Harry’s House,” which saw the equivalent of 521,500 sales in the US over the past week, thanks to strong streaming numbers and the most big vinyl take in three decades.

For years, moving a million copies of an album in a week was a coveted achievement for any hit release. Since the 1990s, it has been done at least 20 timesby artists like Adele, Whitney Houston, ‘N Sync, Eminem and Taylor Swift.

But streaming has upended the music industry’s calculations, and the prospect of selling a million copies of an album – or even getting a million “equivalent sales units”, a new yardstick that integrates old-fashioned purchases and streaming clicks – has largely disappeared from the market. strategy book. No track has recorded a million sales in a single week since Swift’s ‘Reputation’ nearly five years ago, and in the past 18 months only four albums – including ‘Harry’s House’ – have topped 500 000.

“Harry’s House” had about as good an opening as any album can have now, with 247 million streams and 330,000 copies sold as a full package, according to tracking service Luminate. It had the best opening of any album since Adele’s “30,” which landed six months ago with 839,000. (Even Adele, whose previous album, “25,” started with nearly 3 $.4 million in 2015, could no longer reach seven figures.)

Styles’ streaming numbers were strong, but less robust than Bad Bunny and Kendrick Lamar’s recent album totals. Where “Harry’s House” really shone was the vinyl. It moved 182,000 copies in LP format, more than any album sold in a single week since at least 1991, when Luminate’s predecessor SoundScan began keeping reliable sales data.

As a billboard Noted, vinyl sales alone would have been enough to propel “Harry’s House” to No. 1. Each of Styles’ three solo albums, which rose to fame in British boy band One Direction, opened at number one. Styles’ song “As It Was” also returned to No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 singles chart, landing its fourth time at the top.

Also this week, several recent charts are holding up: Bad Bunny’s “Un Verano Sin Ti” is No. 2, “Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers,” is No. 3, and Future’s “I Never Liked You” is No. 4.

Country singer-songwriter Zach Bryan’s “American Heartbreak” — his first major-label album after two self-released recordings — opens at No. 5. Morgan Wallen’s “Dangerous: The Double Album” is No. 6, the 72-week-long album breaks out of the Top 5 for the first time since December.

Jack L. Goldstein