Aretha Reigns! Queen of Soul Posthumously Soars on Multiple Billboard Charts

Posted August 23, 2018 by J Matthew Cobb in News

All hail the Queen of Soul. It looks like Aretha Franklin is extending her reign on multiple music charts this week

Aretha reigns!

On this week, a week after the passing of Aretha Franklin, Billboard rolled out the metrics for their charts and ultimately revealed the real Queen of hearts.

This week, the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin posted major jumps on the Billboard 200 and Top Gospel Albums chart. Her back catalog is also enjoying major jumps, including 30 Greatest Hits, originally released in 1985 on Atlantic. Apparently, it was the go-to album on digital/streaming platforms and was the first to experience a major spike level of purchases and streaming with over 35,000 equivalent album units earned. According to Nielsen Music, this will Franklin’s highest charted album in 46 years.

Two versions of her best-selling Amazing Grace album landed at numbers 1 and 3 on the Billboard Hot Gospel Albums chart. Nielsen reports those numbers to be upwards to 2,000 equivalent album units. 1972’s Amazing Grace, already certified double platinum by the RIAA, remains the highest-selling album in all of Aretha’s catalog and one of the best-selling gospel albums of all time.

And over at the Artist 100, a chart launched in July 2014 measuring artist activity across a plethora of data including music consumption, radio airplay, streaming, album/track sales and social media interactions, Franklin roared in at number four. Travis Scott, Nicki Minaj and Drake occupied the top three spots. It’s a new peak for Franklin considering her last entry on the chart was back in November 2014, charting at number 68.

All chart reflections for the late R&B-pop legend will definitely be much higher next week since the data here only reflects the metrics when public learned of “gravely ill” reports and her passing on Thursday.

In other “queenly” chart-topping news, it looks like Nicki Minaj might have to take second place for her newest album, Queen. It took a back seat to Travis Scott’s Astroworld, which continues its reign at number one on the Billboard 200 in week two of the album’s release and selling 205,000 album-equivalent units. Minaj’s fourth set only sold 185,000 album-equivalent sales (78,000 being physical-pure unit sales). Yeah, much of the blame, according to critics, is the failure of the released singles and them not having real commercial power.

About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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