Justin Timberlake's '20/20' 2013's Best-Selling Album, 'Blurred Lines' Top Song
This story first appeared on Billboard.com.
Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience and Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" finish 2013 as the year's top selling album and song in the United States, respectively, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Timberlake's 20/20, which was released on March 19, sold 2.43 million in 2013 and is the only album that sold more than 2 million copies this past year.
The 2013 sales tracking year began on Dec. 31, 2012 ended on Dec. 29, 2013.
20/20 is also the smallest-selling year-end No. 1 album since SoundScan began tracking music sales in 1991. Previously, the SoundScan-era low was set in 2008, when Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III was the top seller, with 2.87 million. (20/20 and Tha Carter III are the only year-end SoundScan No. 1 albums to finish a year with less than 3 million.)
A year ago, the top selling album of 2012 was Adele's 21, with 4.41 million sold in 2012. "21" also reigned in 2011 as the top selling release, with 5.82 million that year.
2013's second-biggest selling album is Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP 2, with 1.73 million. It's the sixth time Eminem has placed an album among a year's top 10 sellers. In 2010, he owned the No. 1 album of the year with Recovery (3.41 million), while he was also the champ of 2002 with The Eminem Show (7.61 million). He also finished among the top 10 in 2009 (No. 9 with Relapse), 2004 (No. 3 with Encore) and 2000 (No. 2 with The Marshall Mathers LP).
Luke Bryan's Crash My Party is 2013's third-biggest album, with 1.52 million sold. It's the highest-ranked year-end album by a male country artist since 1992, when Billy Ray Cyrus' Some Gave All and Garth Brooks' Ropin' the Wind finished as that year's Nos. 1 and 2 albums (4.83 million and 4.10 million, respectively).
Crash My Party was one of two No. 1 albums for Bryan in 2013 on the weekly Billboard 200 chart. It followed his compilation Spring Break… Here to Party, which also debuted at No. 1 in March. It finishes 2013 as the No. 39 overall seller, with 543,000.
Imagine Dragons' Night Visions is 2013's fourth-biggest album, with 1.4 million sold in the year. The set was released in 2012, and sold 417,000 that year (making it the No. 61 album of 2012).
Night Visions is also the top selling rock album of 2013, while Timberlake's set is the best selling R&B/hip-hop set. The Marshall Mathers LP 2 is naturally the biggest rap album of 2013, while Bryan's Crash is the year's best selling country release.
"Night Visions" is also the highest-ranked album on the year-end best sellers list that did not hit No. 1 on the weekly Billboard 200 chart. It debuted and peaked at No. 2.
Bruno Mars' Unorthodox Jukebox is No. 5 on the year-end list, with just under 1.40 million, while Florida Georgia Line's Here's to the Good Times is No. 6 with 1.35 million. Both albums were released in 2012. Mars' set sold 480,000 in 2012 (making it the No. 47 album of that year) while Here's to the Good Times sold 181,000 in 2012.
Drake's Nothing Was the Same is the No. 7 album of 2013, with 1.34 million, while Beyonce's self-titled album is ranked at No. 8 with 1.3 million. Beyonce is also the youngest title among the top 10 albums of 2013, having only been released on Dec. 14.
Beyonce is also 2013's best selling album by a woman. The next-highest ranked leading lady is Katy Perry, with "PRISM," at No. 14 for the year (969,000).
Blake Shelton's Based On a True Story is the No. 9 seller of 2013 (1.11 million), while Beyonce's husband -- Jay Z -- is No. 10 with Magna Carta…Holy Grail (1.1 million). This is the first time in the SoundScan era that a husband and wife have both separately placed albums among the top 10 sellers in a calendar year.
During the 52 weeks that ended Dec. 29, overall album sales in the U.S. fell by 8 percent to 289.41 million from 315.96 million in 2012.
Physical CD sales were down 14 percent in 2012 while digital album downloads were also down -- for the first time -- by less than 1 percent to 117.58 million. (2012 marked the best year for album downloads, with 117.68 million.)
SoundScan began tracking digital sales in 2003.
41 percent of all albums sold in 2013 were downloads -- up from 37 percent in 2012 (and 31 percent in 2011). The top selling digital album of 2013 was The 20/20 Experience, with 1.03 million. It is the only album sell a million downloads in 2013.
For the sixth straight year, more vinyl albums were sold than in any other year since SoundScan launched in 1991. In 2013, 6.1 million vinyl LPs were sold -- up 33 percent compared to 2012's haul of 4.55 million. 64 percent of all vinyl albums sold in 2012 were purchased at an independent music store (3 percent less than compared to indie stores' share in 2012). Notably -- and not surprisingly -- 75 percent of all vinyl albums sold in 2013 were rock albums.
The top selling vinyl album of 2013 was Daft Punk's Random Access Memories, having sold 49,000 last year. Vampire Weekend's Modern Vampires of the City was in second place with 34,000. (A year ago, the top selling vinyl album was Jack White's Blunderbuss with 34,000 LPs sold.)
As for digital songs, 2013 was the first year that download sales declined. 1.26 billion songs were sold last year -- down 6 percent compared to the record of 1.34 billion sold in 2012. SoundScan began tracking song download sales in the summer of 2003, shortly after Apple's iTunes Music Store launched in April of that year.
Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines," featuring Pharrell and T.I., was 2013's top selling song, with 6.5 million sold. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "Thrift Shop," featuring Wanz, was the year's second-biggest song, with 6.15 million.
They were the only two songs to sell more than 6 million in 2013, and are among the only 26 cuts to have moved more than 6 million in history. (The biggest selling digital song ever remains the Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling," with 8.44 million.)
Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive" was the year's third biggest song (5.5 million), followed by Florida Georgia Line's "Cruise" (4.69 million) and Lorde's "Royals" (4.42 million).
Katy Perry's "Roar" is No. 6 with 4.41 million, while P!nk's "Just Give Me a Reason," featuring Nate Ruess, is No. 7 with 4.32 million.
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis' "Can't Hold Us" finishes the year at No. 8 with 4.26 million, while Bruno Mars' "When I Was Your Man" is No. 9 with 3.93 million. Rihanna's "Stay," featuring Mikky Ekko, closes out the top 10 with 3.85 million.
A total of 106 songs sold more than 1 million downloads in 2013 -- down from the 108 that did it in 2012 (and 112 in 2011). 38 moved 2 million in 2013 (vs. 41 in 2012 and 38 in 2011).