Eagles hits album overtakes Michael Jackson′s ′Thriller′ in US all-time sales | News | DW | 20.08.2018
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Eagles hits album overtakes Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' in US all-time sales

The Eagles' greatest hits album has surpassed the late Michael Jackson's "Thriller" as the best-selling album of all-time in the US. The country-rock band has sold more than 150 million albums and continues to tour.

The Eagles (Imago/UnitedArchives)

The Eagles from left to right: Bernie Leadon, Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Randy Meisner and Don Felder

The Eagles' greatest hits compilation, called "Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975," has overtaken Michael Jackson's 1982 "Thriller" as the best-selling album of all-time in the United States, the Record Industry Association of America announced on Monday.

The 1976 album, which includes rock classics such as "Take It Easy" and "Witchy Woman," has sold more than 38 million units, 5 million more than "Thriller," the RIAA said. The figures include disc and streaming sales, according to Rolling Stone magazine.

"We are grateful for our families, our management, our crew, the people at radio and, most of all, the loyal fans who have stuck with us through the ups and downs of 46 years. It's been quite a ride," Don Henley, 71, the country-rock band's lead singer and co-founder, said in a statement carried by Rolling Stone.

The compilation was overtaken by "Thriller" in 2009 after Jackson's death caused a surge in sales. The late pop star's hit album is still the best selling album worldwide, estimated to have sold 47.3 million copies. 

Michael Jackson's Thriller

Michael Jackson's Thriller

Two in the top three

"Hotel California," the Eagles' 1976 album of the same name, ranked third with 26 million in sales.

"Congratulations to the Eagles, who now claim the jaw-dropping feat of writing and recording two of the top three albums in music history," Cary Sherman, the chief executive of RIAA, said in a statement. "Both of these transcendent albums have impressively stood the test of time, only gaining more currency and popularity as the years have passed, much like the Eagles themselves."

The RIAA is a trade organization that has been analyzing and updating music sales figures in the US. It has been awarding gold and platinum certifications for albums for 60 years.

The Eagles were formed in Los Angeles by Henlely and Glenn Frey in 1971 and are the highest selling band in US history. They broke up in 1980, but reunited in 1994 and were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.

Frey died in 2016, but the band still tours with Henley, Frey's son Deacon and country star Vince Gill. They are scheduled to start a three-month tour in the US starting on September 8.

dv/jm (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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