The Best-Selling Album Of 2009 Is Actually A Compilation From 2003

noah | August 26, 2009 6:00 pm

Buried in this week’s Billboard 200 wrapup (the No. 1 record, Reba McEntire’s Keep On Loving You, somehow managed to sell 96,000 copies! Woo?) is a little note about the race for the best-selling album of 2009, which up until this week was led by country cutie-pie Taylor Swift and her second album Fearless. No matter how youthful and ebuillent she might be, though, she apparently can’t compete with a dead guy. (OK, so this particular person might be a special case.) Yes, Michael Jackson’s Number Ones is now the best-selling album of 2009, having moved 1,619,000 copies over the course of the past eight-ish months. Fearless is lagging by approximately 11,000 copies. This week, Number Ones moved 68,000 copies, a 15% decline in overall sales but still enough to make it the catalog-inclusive Comprehensive Chart’s No. 2 for the week (eek!); Fearless, meanwhile, sold 34,000 units, and was No. 8 on the Billboard 200, which doesn’t count moldy old records like Jackson’s 2003 hits compilation. This should certainly shape up to be an interesting race to the 2009 finish line, what with Jackson’s hits-flogging concert film set to drop in October—just before the holiday shopping season starts—and Swift presumably still being able to promote her album with singles and promotional appearances on the Video Music Awards, the American Music Awards, and other televised entertainments. But if Number Ones does finish the year at, for lack of a better term, No. 1, will Billboard relent on its “no old albums allowed” policy for its charts? Honestly, in this time of ever-declining retail outlets for music and Americans’ even-more-quickly declining appetite for caring about what record companies have been up to recently, turning the Comprehensive Chart into the real big board seems like the best way to accurately reflect the national mood. (And if nothing else, having him end the year at No. 1 will certainly put that absurd rumor about him maybe being alive to rest.) Reba McEntire Nets Second No. 1 on Billboard 200 [Billboard]