ABBA :: Charts & Sales History

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Postby Benny » Thu May 17, 2012 6:07 pm

Italy is indeed a country where Abba's success was very moderate. It's the only big record market I can think of where they didn't have neither a number one single nor a number one album. In fact, only three of their songs reached the Italian top 10 with "SOS" being their biggest hit, peaking at number 2. Their studio albums struggled on the album chart (neither "Arrival", "The Album" nor "Super Trouper" made the top 10, for example). "Gold" is their most successful album ever with a number two peak.

Abba performed on Italian TV only once, in September 1975. Apparently they weren't treated nicely there (they had to wait for hours until they could perform, the dressing room was very small etc.) and that's why they decided never to go back to Italy again. So a lack of promotion is certainly one reason behind the moderate success.

Italian sales for "Gold" are a mystery, apparently it was certified for sales of 200.000 but some people believe it sold as much as 800.000 copies.
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Postby HUR » Thu May 17, 2012 6:55 pm

I think you took that from a Billboard article in 1999, where it was listed as quadruple gold in Italy. But before 1994, 100,000 copies were needed for an album to go gold and 200,000 to reach platinum status. If their record company were using that criteria, that would mean it was on 400,000 copies then. It may not not have sold 800,000 copies by now, but more than that, if true.
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Postby Benny » Thu May 17, 2012 8:59 pm

HUR, thanks you for your reply! I found the following information regarding the sales of "Gold" in the "Italian certifications" thread (mostly estimations):

- 250.000 copies sold in 1992
- 50.500 copies sold in 2008
- 41.942 copies in 2009
- it received a gold certification (30.000 copies) in 2010 for sales since 2009.

A sales total of 400.000 copies until 1999 using the quadruple gold certification from Billboard with gold equalling 100.000 copies (before 1994) could be realistic. Add (almost) 100.000 copies sold in 2008 & 2009 and we have a total of half a million copies. I don't think that it sold that much between 2000 and 2007, people were buying "The Definitive Collection" instead (it reached number 10 in late 2001). So I guess the Italian sales total for "Gold" is between 500k and 600k (not 800k, that number is way too high).
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Postby jszmiles » Fri May 18, 2012 11:34 am

By Lauren Kreisler

Swedish superstars ABBA have further underlined their position as musical legends, with their Gold album becoming only the third 5-million-seller in UK chart history. According to latest Official Charts Company sales data, the quartet’s Gold - Greatest Hits has passed the 5 million mark in the past week.

The achievement puts the album alongside alongside Queen’s Greatest Hits and The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band as one of only three albums to reach such an elevated sales level.

Gold - Greatest Hits marks 20 years since its initial release this October, having racked up eight weeks at Number 1 since it was first released in 1992. ABBA are one of the all-time great singles artists, having racked up nine Number 1s and another 10 Top 10s in the UK’s Official Singles Chart, since their debut hit Waterloo in 1974.

Official Charts Company managing director Martin Talbot says, “This is another incredible record in a career of extraordinary achievements for ABBA, who are unquestionably one of British music fans’ all-time favourite acts. Over the past 20 years, one in every five households has bought a copy of Gold, which is a truly remarkable statistic.

“ABBA are true chart superstars here in the UK – and this latest record adds to their legendary status.”

ABBA’s landmark has been reached after Adele’s 21 broke into the all-time UK Official Albums Chart Top 5 for the first time last month, behind Oasis’s What’s The Story Morning Glory. The two albums are among a list of five other albums to have sold more than 4m copies in the UK, the others being Pink Floyd's The Dark Side Of The Moon, Dire Straits’ Brothers In Arms and Michael Jackson’s Thriller.

ABBA Gold is just 46,000 copies behind The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper's.

The UK’s Official Biggest Selling Albums of all-time Top 10
01 GREATEST HITS (1981) - QUEEN
02 SGT PEPPER’S LONELY HEART’S CLUB BAND (1967) - THE BEATLES
03 GOLD - GREATEST HITS (1992) - ABBA
04 WHAT’S THE STORY MORNING GLORY (1995) - OASIS
05 21 (2011) – ADELE
06 THRILLER (1982) - MICHAEL JACKSON
07 BROTHERS IN ARMS (1985) - DIRE STRAITS
08 THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON (1973) - PINK FLOYD
09 BAD (1987) - MICHAEL JACKSON
10 GREATEST HITS II (1991) - QUEEN

© 2012 the Official Charts Company. All rights reserved.
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Postby zeus555 » Fri May 18, 2012 12:54 pm

In the UK, The Official Charts Company has just announced that
'ABBA Gold' has become only the 3rd Album to reach 5 Million UK
Sales:,

LINK:,

http://www.officialcharts.com/chart-new ... club-1400/

UK ‘GOLD - GREATEST HITS’ UK CHART TRIVIA


And here is some Chart Data that I've compiled about this.

1) This 1992 Album has now become only the 3rd Album to reach 5 Million Sales, in the UK.

2) Only ‘Greatest Hits’, by Queen, (1981), & ‘Sgt Pepper….’, by The Beatles, have sold more UK copies.

3) TOP 75 WEEKS

It has also spent more time in the Top 75 than any other Album - 449 Weeks.

4) TOP 100 WEEKS

And more Weeks in the Top 100 than any other Album - 648 Weeks.

5) TOP 10 WEEKS

It has spent more Weeks in the Top 10 than any other ABBA Album - 58 Weeks.

6) No.1 YEARS

It has had 5 ‘Runs’ at No.1, for a Total of 8 Weeks. Whilst that is not a UK Chart Record, the fact that it had 3 of those ‘Runs’, several years apart, & in separate Chart Runs, is.

A) It first went to No.1 in October 1992

B) Then in April 1999 - 6 Years & 6 Months later. (As well as returning to No.1 - twice - in May 1999).

C) Then in August 2008 - 9 Years & 3 Months later. (You start this ‘Span’ in May 1999 - not in April 1999).

7) 13 YEARS IN THE ANNUAL UK TOP 100 BEST SELLING ALBUMS

It is one of very few Albums to appear in the UK’s Annual Top 100 Albums for as many as
13 Years:,

1992 - 12th, 1993 - 36th, 1994 - 63rd, 1995 - 80th, 1996 - 87th, 1997 - 100th, 1998 - 55th,

1999 - 4th 2000 - 41st, 2004 - 47th, 2008 - 19th, 2009 - 54th, 2010 - 90th

8) SEPTEMBER 2012 - 20th ANNIVERSARY OF ‘GOLD’

September of this Year is the 20th Anniversary of ‘Gold’ being released in the UK.
(Released on Monday 21st September 1992. Entered, (at No.1), in the Chart of W/E 3rd October 1992).

ABBA TRIVIA - AS A GROUP

A) 2012 is the 40th Anniversary of ABBA forming - 1972

B) And the 30th Anniversary of them splitting up - 1982

C) They are the biggest Non-UK/Non-USA Act, in UK Chart History.
(Beating even Kylie Minogue, (Australia), & Celine Dion, (Canada).

D) They have spent more Weeks at No.1, in the UK Singles & Albums Chart combined
- 88 Weeks - than all but 2 Acts - The Beatles - 243 Weeks, & Elvis Presley - 143 Weeks.

E) Their 114 Top 10 UK Singles Chart Weeks, & 224 Top 10 UK Albums Chart Weeks,
are the most by any Group, since The Beatles split up, in 1970.

F) ABBA & LED ZEPPELIN hold the UK Chart Record, for the ‘Most Consecutive No.1 Albums. Both Acts had 8 No.1 Albums in a row. Led Zeppelin from 1970 to 1979, & ABBA from 1976 to 1982. Ironically, the 8th No.1 Album by Led Zeppelin, (‘In Through The Out Door’), was recorded at ABBA’s Polar Studios, in Sweden - 1978.


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Postby Benny » Fri May 18, 2012 4:43 pm

Fantastic news from the UK :D!
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Postby HUR » Fri May 18, 2012 6:45 pm

Amazing accolade.

Benny wrote:HUR, thanks you for your reply! I found the following information regarding the sales of "Gold" in the "Italian certifications" thread (mostly estimations):

- 250.000 copies sold in 1992
- 50.500 copies sold in 2008
- 41.942 copies in 2009
- it received a gold certification (30.000 copies) in 2010 for sales since 2009.

A sales total of 400.000 copies until 1999 using the quadruple gold certification from Billboard with gold equalling 100.000 copies (before 1994) could be realistic. Add (almost) 100.000 copies sold in 2008 & 2009 and we have a total of half a million copies. I don't think that it sold that much between 2000 and 2007, people were buying "The Definitive Collection" instead (it reached number 10 in late 2001). So I guess the Italian sales total for "Gold" is between 500k and 600k (not 800k, that number is way too high).
Agreed. However, I think it is definitely more than 600,000 (500,000 is probably too conservative). Also, while I think 800,000 copies is rather high, it shouldn't be ruled out altogether. I remember seeing some Abba's sales somewhere, not sure where. It is true it may be their smallerst market, but they did have some decent successes.
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Postby Benny » Sun May 20, 2012 8:17 pm

UK Album Chart:
53 (82) Abba - 18 Hits

Number 53 is the album's highest position in the UK since November 2008 :D

The same cover of the "Dancing Queen" single from 1976 has been chosen for "The Essential Collection" which will be released in Germany on the 25th of May:

Image
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Postby zeus555 » Mon May 21, 2012 10:22 am

I think that 'The Essential Collection' will need
a lot of promotion in Germany. The 2 CD version was
high as No.44, in the Amazon, (German), Top 100, last
night, but it is now at No.116, & the 2 CD + DVD version
is near the lower end of the Top 200. The DVD is in the 4000's.

Alan Jones, ('Music Week'), has mentioned 'Gold' in his Monday Sales
Report, regarding the current UK Album Chart:,

"ABBA's Gold: Greatest Hits has become the third album to sell upwards of
five million copies. Climbing 112-110, the album sold 1,009 copies last
week, raising its career tally to a staggering 5,002,685. Only Queen's
Greatest Hits and The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band have
sold more copies".

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Postby arab » Mon May 21, 2012 2:40 pm

^
Incredible total sales!
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 9:29 am

Abba's Sales are fantastic - :D

I am also glad to see that the Abba worldwide Chart list is being updated again (After a year of being dormant) I just wished Trent would get rid of the claims made for Costa Rica (they are so wrong) and put Denmark's Abba Charts in it's place, as at least we know a lot more for Denmark than we do Costa Rica - Also it seems that Abba had good on-going sucess in Chile so it would be great to see how they did there.

Intresting that Trent has added the follwing informtion about Abba sales in France

Waterloo - Gold - sales reported to be 417,000
Fernando - Gold - sales reported to be 602,000
Money, Money, Money - Gold - sales reported to be 550,000
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! - Gold - sales reported to be 583,000
Super Trouper - Gold - sales reported to be 392,000

Total Abba sales in France are listed as 5,476,000 singles and 3,109,423 albums. So Abba sold less than a third LP'S and Singles in France than they did in England despite both countries having roughly the same size populations. :-?

What these single sales do tell us that Fernando was a massive seller in nearly every country and it also seems to be the country where MMM and GGG sold the most copies.
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Postby innocenteyes » Sat May 26, 2012 9:35 am

^ It would've been interesting to have total sales for I Do x5 in France given it was one of their biggest hits here.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 12:39 pm

I am not too sure I do x 5 was one of Abba's biggest hits in france -as it only made number 14 on the sales chart - and was only the 60th best selling single of 1975 in their end of year sales chart.

The thing that I find intresting about I do x 5 - is that this song was a big hit for Abba around Europe and even made the American top 20 (albeit after SOS had been released there) but it is generally thought that SOS saved Abba's career -I think that this is only true in the UK as I do X 5 made number 1 in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Switzerland, number 6 in Germany and was a top five hit in many countries - so after the flop (Mostly) of So Long - it was I do x 5 to the rescue.

I reckon it sold about a million (at least) around the world and although it has not aged as well as a lot of Abba's other singles, it was ,for its day, experimental. :D
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Postby innocenteyes » Sat May 26, 2012 1:15 pm

prici900 wrote:I am not too sure I do x 5 was one of Abba's biggest hits in france
Perhaps it's not reflected in chart positions but if you ask french people, who were around in the 1970 when ABBA were big, about their biggest hits, I Do would come right after Money x3, Gimme x3 and Fernando.

I don't think that the younger generation will be very familiar with this song very well but 50-60 year old people definately know about I Do x5.

I've never understood why it was excluded from ABBA Gold as it's one of their biggest hits worldwide (bar in the UK and Ireland).
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Postby kevin1989 » Sat May 26, 2012 1:38 pm

I don't agree. Personally, most of the people I know who were there when ABBA were together don't seem to remember as well about I dox5 than other songs. I admit most of them know the song, but it's not the first one nor the second nor the third that comes to their mind when talking about the ABBA songs they remember of.

Still, I do x5 is one one of ABBA's biggest selling single in France - it supposedly sold just over 300,000 copies. It probably didn't peak very high on the chart, but it may have had a long chart run explaining why its sales are so high.

For people who want to know more about ABBA's chart success in France, you should have a look at this site: http://www.top-france.fr/ It is still under construction but the data provided seem to be very accurate, coming from the most serious sources!

Oh and as for ABBA Gold, I guess I do x5 isn't featured because the tracklist is mainly based on ABBA's chart history in the UK. I do x5 and Summer Night City should have been featured, even though I figure that they didn't want to put Summer Night City as they were never really happy with how this song turned out to be.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 3:04 pm

I have just looked at France's sales chart and - yep it did have a long chart run compared to other Abba Chart hits in france - it was on the chart for 14 weeks - I seem to remember that Look-in (Old teenage magazine) stating that I do x 5 got a silver award - which would give it sales of 125,000+. Of course I would love to know that it sold 300,00 as I am all for proving Abba's sales.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 3:20 pm

Abba in Denmark -

I love finding new information about Abba's chart and sales sucess - I have the following infomation for some of Abba's sucess in Denmark - if any one eles can add to this it would be great.

The charts in Denmark were a combined singles and Albums chart (I hate that it reduces Abba's chance of having a number 1) - the information I have from the offical chart site only gose up to the 13th week in 1977 - all informtion after that is from various books/websites.

Singles -

1973 - Ring ring - number 1 (1 week).
1973- Love isn't easy - number 21
1974 - Waterloo - number 1 (2 weeks).
1974 - Ring ring (remix) number 3.
1974 - Honey Honey - number 10
1975 - So long - Number 8
1975 - I do x 5 - number 4
1975 - SOS - number 7
1976 - Fernando - number 2
1976 - Dancing queen - number 1 (8 weeks)
1976 - Money x 3 - number 9
the information after this is patchy for example I do not know if Knowing me knowing you was realeased in Denmark. The other infortion I have is as follows:
1978 - Summer night city - number 1
1979 - Chiquitita - number 1
1979 - Gimme x 3 - number 1

As for thier Lp's I have the following:

1973-Ring Ring - Number 3 (HOORAY)
1974-Waterloo - number 2
1975-Abba - Number 1 (5 weeks)
1976-Greatest hits - number 1 (6 weeks)
1976 - Arrival - number 1 (21 weeks +) said to have sold a massive 225,000

All very good for such a small but loyal market.
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Postby wolfmother » Sat May 26, 2012 3:25 pm

innocenteyes wrote:
prici900 wrote:I am not too sure I do x 5 was one of Abba's biggest hits in france
Perhaps it's not reflected in chart positions but if you ask french people, who were around in the 1970 when ABBA were big, about their biggest hits, I Do would come right after Money x3, Gimme x3 and Fernando.

I don't think that the younger generation will be very familiar with this song very well but 50-60 year old people definately know about I Do x5.

I've never understood why it was excluded from ABBA Gold as it's one of their biggest hits worldwide (bar in the UK and Ireland).
Not exactly true, it is far from being their most familiar track in France, even among those who were around in the 70's. It at least comes right after "Dancing Queen","Fernando", "Waterloo", "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!", "Money, Money, Money", "The winner takes it all" and "Take a chance on me" and possibly "Super trouper" too.
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Postby innocenteyes » Sat May 26, 2012 3:28 pm

kevin1989 wrote:I admit most of them know the song, but it's not the first one nor the second nor the third that comes to their mind when talking about the ABBA songs they remember of.
Perhaps the fourth then, as I just stated in my post lol.
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Postby wolfmother » Sat May 26, 2012 3:35 pm

prici900 wrote:Abba's Sales are fantastic - :D

I am also glad to see that the Abba worldwide Chart list is being updated again (After a year of being dormant).

Intresting that Trent has added the follwing informtion about Abba sales in France

Waterloo - Gold - sales reported to be 417,000
Fernando - Gold - sales reported to be 602,000
Money, Money, Money - Gold - sales reported to be 550,000
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! - Gold - sales reported to be 583,000
Super Trouper - Gold - sales reported to be 392,000

Total Abba sales in France are listed as 5,476,000 singles and 3,109,423 albums. So Abba sold less than a third LP'S and Singles in France than they did in England despite both countries having roughly the same size populations. :-?

What these single sales do tell us that Fernando was a massive seller in nearly every country and it also seems to be the country where MMM and GGG sold the most copies.
ABBA single sales in France are more than respectful, they are fantastic, not many non-french speaking artist can claim such high sales.
On the other hand their album sales are desappointing but there not bad at all, plus many budget albums for the group have been produced and I'm not sure if they have been included in those estimations, plus budget album sales numbers are hard to estimate anyway. We have to remember that the album market wasn't particulary strong in France back then, no album sold as much as the top sellers did in the UK. Singles were on the other end quite huge.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 4:21 pm

Yeah the UK was quite unique in that both LP & singles sales were big.

Please don't misunderstand what I am getting at when I make my posts - I believe that Abba were consistantly sucessful in most countries where records were sold - in that they are one of the few acts to have a level of success in most countries.

Abba's success (like Queen, the Bee Gees and the Beatles) was down to the talented members of the group not down to the talents of outsiders.

Every time I hear of new sales figures I get excited (Sad I know) but it all adds to the picture of just how many records Abba sold, be it a career total of 3 million in a small markert (probably 3 million more than some acts will sell in their own countries) or the bigger markets - I have no more intrest in the UK sales than I do from those Sales in Finland or Norway.

BTW here are some more sales figures for Denmark -

The Defintive collection - 50,000
Abba Gold - 300,000+
Forever Gold (160,000)

Thats half a million LP's sold from just 3 Albums -and with Denmark having a population of some 2 million - Amazing.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 4:29 pm

OOps that should say Denmark has a population of over 5 million - not 2 million.

I have one more sales figure:

1975 Abba LP - 200,000.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 4:41 pm

innocenteyes wrote "I've never understood why it was excluded from ABBA Gold as it's one of their biggest hits worldwide (bar in the UK and Ireland)".

If gold was based on Abba's best selling singles around the world 1 do x 5 would replace lay all your love on me or Thank you for the music and Ring Ring would also make Gold I think.

To be honest I would love I have a dream not to have made Gold and have had Eagle on there but Hey Ho - I bet we all have our own versions of Gold in mind. :P
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 5:04 pm

Abba Sales in Hong kong - see website LP'S ONLY -

IFPI Hong Kong Sales Awards?
it seems the year is when the sales award was awared:

Gold disks for: 10,000 LP'S
1977 Abba Best of Abba Polydor
1980 Abba Voulez Vous PolyGram
1981 Abba Greatest Hits II PolyGram
1983 Abba The Visitors PolyGram


Platinum disk for: 20,000 LP'S
1977 Abba Greatest Hits Polydor
1977 Abba Abba Arrival Polydor
1979 Abba Abba - The Album PolyGram
1979 Abba The Very Best of Abba PolyGram
1981 Abba Super Trouper PolyGram


Hong Kong had a population of just over 4 million by the end of the 1970's and Abba got a sales award for every year that there are records for so far at least 140,000 records sold from the certifications above. 1976 - 1983.
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Postby prici900 » Sat May 26, 2012 5:18 pm

Israel - population in the 1970's was about 4 million +

I would love to know more about Abba's sucess in this country as I heard that they were extremely popular here -

What I do know is that GGG made number 1 in 1979

and Gold sold 20,000+ to get a Platinum award

Silver - for Arrival which I believe is some 5,000+

Gold award for- Abba - The Album - some 10,000
Gold award for - Super Trouper some 10,000

So a little information - I hope I can get more to follow.
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