NEW YORK, N.Y. – The Eagles’ greatest hits album has moonwalked past Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” to become history’s bestselling album of all-time in the U.S.
The Recording Industry Association of America told The Associated Press on Monday that the Eagles’ album — “Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975” — is now certified 38x platinum, which means sales and streams of the album have reached 38 million copies.
The album was released in 1976 and pushes Jackson’s “Thriller,” which is 33x platinum, to second place.
RIAA also said that the Eagles’ “Hotel California,” released in 1977, is now 26x platinum and makes it the third bestselling album of all-time.
The last time RIAA tallied sales for the Eagles’ greatest hits album was in 2006, when it said it was 29x platinum. Sales and streams for “Thriller” were last updated last year.
“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 said in a statement.
RIAA’s platinum status was once equivalent to selling one million albums or songs, but in 2013 the company began incorporating streaming from YouTube, Spotify and other digital music services to determine certification for albums and songs.
Now 1,500 streams of an album is equivalent to an album sale. Also, 10 song downloads = 1 album sale.
The Eagles, who formed in Los Angeles in the early 1970s, mastered the mix of rock ‘n’ roll and country music, and the band’s hits — including “Hotel California” and “Take It Easy — became part of the soundtrack of that decade. They broke up in 1980, coming back together 14 years later with Henley and Glenn Frey being the only remaining original members. Frey died in 2016, but the Grammy-winning band remains on tour.
The band was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 and received the Kennedy Center Honor in 2016.