In 1948, for Columbia, classical music was the main destination of new longplaying records. However, when first album charts started in 1955 in America and 1 year later in UK, it was clear that pop music will be dominant.
The first Number 1 albums in US and UK,respectively, were:
- 28.05.1955 – US album chart – „Crazy Otto” [Decca, honky-tonk piano];
- 28.07.1956 – UK album chart – Frank Sinatra – „Songs For Swingin’ Lovers” [Capitol].
OK, in the middle of 2023 year we can look at UK and US album charts from quite a long perspective. It is good to know the lists of longest rivers and highest mountains… And it could be also interesting to create all time lists of top artists and albums. I believe it is different with albums than with singles. I mean sales figures are the most important for singles. So, how many millions of records were sold.
However, in order to measure somehow the long term importance of albums and artists one has much better tool – WEEKS ON CHART. So, how long the respective albums find their buyers.
Taking into consideration the whole period from the 50s till 30.06.2023 and adding weeks on charts, totally, you will find below the 10 top artists and albums ever in UK and US, respectively:
|9||The Rolling Stones||2030|
|1||Abba's Gold – Greatest Hits||1110|
|2||Bob Marley & The Wailers' Legend||1088|
|3||Queen's Greatest Hits||1056|
|4||Fleetwood Mac's Rumours||999|
|5||Oasis' [What's The Story] Morning Glory?||599|
|6||Michael Jackson's Number Ones||586|
|7||Eminem's Curtain Call: The Hits||572|
|8||Pink Floyd's The Dark Side Of The Moon||561|
|9||Amy Winehouse's Back To Black||535|
|10||Meat Loaf's Bat Out Of Hell||530|
|1||Pink Floyd's The Dark Side Of The Moon||980|
|2||Bob Marley & The Wailers' Legend||788|
|3||Journey's Greatest Hits||766|
|5||Creedence Clearwater Revival's Chronicle||663|
|6||Eminem's Curtain Call: The Hits||636|
|7||Guns N' Roses' Greatest Hits||630|
|8||Bruno Mars' Doo-Wops & Hoologans||628|
|10||Michael Jackson's Thriller||578|
British fans have their Official Charts and American ones – Billboard 200. And what about European non-British fans? We are closer to UK chart, however, Billboard 200 cannot be neglected, absolutely. And that’s my „invention” – total weeks on British chart are corrected with a half of weeks on Billboard 200. Why a half? In order to reduce dominance of Billboard 200. I mean US chart includes 200 albums, whereas UK chart – 100 albums only.
Results? Well, thanks to American Queen-scepticism […] Queen is landing on my list at Number 3 „only”. And Number 1 are still The Beatles and Elvis Presley is No. 2, which perfectly illustrates their importance in the history of pop music! On the other hand, thanks to dominating British preferences, „Journey’s Greatest Hits” [nothing against…] are No. 42 „only” on my list… Again, an American Abba-scepticism makes their „Gold – Greatest Hits” No. 4 „only” on my list. These are just a few examples of advantages of those my „clever” lists…
So, top 10 artists and albums ever – from point of view of non-British European fan – are:
Top 10 Artists (UK + 1/2 US)
Top 10 Albums (UK + 1/2 US)
|1||Bob Marley & The Wailers' Legend||1482|
|2||Queen's Greatest Hits||1330|
|3||Fleetwood Mac's Rumours||1266|
|4||Abba's Gold – Greatest Hits||1249|
|5||Pink Floyd's The Dark Side Of The Moon||1051|
|6||Eminem's Curtain Call: The Hits||890|
|8||Guns N'Roses' Greatest Hits||710|
|9||Michael Jackson's Number Ones||697|
|10||The Beatles - „1”||694|
For more – see below! You will find there also, written by small digits, exact number of weeks on UK and US chart, respectively, for each artist and album. OK, the US figures should be obviously multiplied by 2.
By the way, I think my lists of all time should be interesting for all worldwide fans located closer to UK than US. And, obviously, having no their own representative charts in their countries.