Adele has made history after her album 21 topped US sales for a second year running. Adele and 21‘s success marks the first time a single album has been top-seller for two consecutive years since Nielsen began recording album sales data in 1991.
The London-born songstress has beaten out competition from country-star Taylor Swift, whose album Red finished second. Adele’s 21 sold 4.41 million units in the United States in 2012. That compares with 3.11 million sales for Swift’s Red. In 2011, 21 sold 5.82 million units.
Keith Caulfield, associate director of charts at Billboard, told Reuters:
“It’s a sort of a once-in-a-lifetime album. Only a few of these albums come along in history. It’s really the right combination of artistry and hit singles. She really crossed over from pop to Latin to adult contemporary to dance. Young and old consumers bought it, and because of its mixture of fans, she was able to sell it as well as she did.”
It’s not only album sales that Adele is dominating. She also has the most sung karaoke song of 2012 and was named “Entertainer of the Year” by the Associated Press. With hits such as “Rolling in the Deep” and “Someone Like You,” the album also won Adele six Grammy Awards.
Nielsen revealed album sales across the music industry are less healthy than Adele’s and Swift’s success suggests. Sales fell 4 percent in 2012 (to 315.96 million albums), following an unusual 3 percent rise in 2011. However, Caulfield argues this was not a cause for concern:
“ was a fluke. A year gain in album sales is a mega achievement. It’s the way the market works now, people buy songs and not albums.”
You can watch the video for Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” below. Are you one of the millions who snapped up the singer’s album?