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Published on November 25th, 2015 | by Alan Cross

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Weekly Music Sales Report and Analysis: 25 November 2015

How many years have I been doing this now? And how many weeks have things been dismal? Most of them–but not this week.

With Black Friday bearing down on everyone, there are six new releases debuting in the Canadian Top 10, pushing overall album sales are up 26% over last week. Don’t get too excited, though, because year-to-date album sales remain down 3% over the same period in 2014. (That will no doubt change next week when we get the Adele sales results, but I’m getting ahead my myself.)

Physical CD sales are down 9% year-to-date over 2014 with digital album sales pulling ahead of last year by 4%.  Digital track sales are still at -4% for the year, but that’s an improvement over this time last week.

To the surprise of zero people, Purpose from Justin Bieber debuted at #1 in Canada with a healthy sales total of 77,000 units, This is the best one-week today since Taylor Swift’s 1989 sold 107,000 units in its first week of release in November 2014. And it’s also Bieber’s personal highest one-week sales total, moving well beyond the 57,000 units sold in the first week of Believe‘s lifetime in 2012.

One Direction’s Made In The A.M. debuts at #2 with 44,000 units sold. Johnny Reid’s What Love Is All About shows up at #3with 15,000 units, followed by Kevin Bazinet’s Talk To Me (#5, 8,000 units) and Logic’s Incredible True Story (#6, 4,800).

“Hello” from Adele remains the most-downloaded digital track across the country, selling another 40,000 copies, pushing it to seventh place on the list of the biggest sellers of the year in just four weeks of release. It’s also the most-streamed song in Canada with 4.7 million listens. Keep in mind that it’s the only song currently being streamed from 25.

Moving to the US, Canadians continue to dominate the album charts this quarter with Justin Bieber debuting at #1 with 522,000 units, outdistancing #2 One Direction by more than 100K. After that, we have Logic (#3, 118,000), Church in These Streets from Jeezy (#4, 98,000), I’m Coming Over from Chris Young (#4, 57,000), Trans-Siberian Orchestra (#6, 46,000) and Kirk Franklin (#8, 33,000).

For downloads, it’s–shock!–“Hello” with 327,000 fresh sales, which is down substantially but not unexpected now that the album is out. And “Hello” is also the biggest streamer with 34 million listens.

I’d also like to point out that seven of the ten most-streamed songs in America this week are by Canadians. Four are from Bieber, two are from Drake and one comes from The Weeknd.

Wait until next week. The numbers for 25 are gonna be crazy.

All figures courtesy Nielsen SoundScan.




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About the Author

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.


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