Elvis Presley Best Selling Solo Artist In U.S. History

With a large crowd of fans gathering to celebrate Elvis Presley’s birthday, RCA Records and BMG Strategic Marketing Group, both part of BMG, with the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced at a ceremony on the grounds of Graceland Mansion this morning that Elvis Presley now stands as the best selling solo artist in U.S. history. "Elvis Presley, quite simply, is an American icon," said RIAA Chairman and CEO Mitch Bainwol. “As such an important musical, historical and cultural figure, we’re thrilled to be able to make this announcement. We will continue to work closely with BMG to make sure that there will be more exciting news about the Elvis Presley catalog in the near future," concluded Bainwol. “It is incredibly gratifying to have the certifications to back up what many have long held as an article of faith, that Elvis is the best selling solo artist in U.S. history,” said Joe DiMuro, Executive Vice President, BMG Strategic Marketing Group. “I’d like to thank the RIAA and our team who worked tirelessly to complete this audit and help secure Elvis’ historic achievement.” In August 2002, it was announced that the Presley catalog finally passed the previously elusive 100 million sales mark. And now during this recent audit, 15 titles were either being certified for the first time or upgraded from previously audited sales levels, his overall album sales total climbed to 117.5 million. In all, seven new Gold records were added to his overall tally including “Almost In Love,” “C’mon Everybody,” “Double Dynamite,” “Elvis Sings Hits From His Movies, Vol. 1,” “Frankie & Johnny,” “I Got Lucky” and his 1956 release “Love Me Tender.” Four of these titles (“Almost In Love,” “Double Dynamite,” “Elvis Sings Hits From His Movies, Vol. 1” and “Frankie & Johnny”) were also certified Platinum for sales in excess of one million copies. There were four additional Platinum awards for “Flaming Star,” “From Nashville To Memphis,” “Let’s Be Friends,” and “Separate Ways.” Additionally, four new multi-Platinum certifications included “Burning Love and Hits From His Movies, Vol. 2” (two million), “The Top Ten Hits” (four million), “You’ll Never Walk Alone” (three million) and "Elvis' Christmas Album" which remains the best selling title in the Elvis Presley catalog with certified sales of more than nine million copies. Also, contributing to his overall sales total was the recently released “2nd TO NONE,” a collection of Elvis Presley singles that follows up 2002’s “ELV1S: 30 #1 HITS,” which was certified both Gold and Platinum in November 2003 for sales of more than one million copies. In all, Elvis Presley has received 97 Gold Records, 55 of which have been certified Platinum, and 25 have gone on to multi-Platinum status. His highest certified album is "Elvis' Christmas Album" which has been certified for the sale of more than seven million copies. He has also received more Gold and Platinum singles than any artist in history with 51 Gold singles, 27 of which have been certified Platinum with seven being certified multi-Platinum. Gelfand, Rennert & Feldman audit all certification requests for the RIAA’s Gold and Platinum award program.
Source: EPE - Elvis Presley Enterprises / Updated: Jan 8, 2004 
Elvis Presley on: eBay, iTunes, Amazon, Sheetmusic


Timmy (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 16, 2004report abuse
I agree with Apachee!! Elvis shouldn't even be mentioned in the same breath as the beatles. There is no way that they have more sales than Elvis. One trip to Graceland and the Trophy Room proves that!! The Gold & Platinum records are mind boggling. And to think he just was presented 15 more!! Elvis is THE King and always will be. Long live The King!
Apachee (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 16, 2004report abuse
The Christmas album that sold 9 million plus, is the 1970 package.
CD King (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 16, 2004report abuse
Elvis the Best Selling Artist in History, you mean only now they know this? This is old hat new. In 1985 Elvis was supposed to have sold 1 Billion Records. by now, it should be more than 2 BILLION. What a poty that RIAA's statistic are completely OUT-Of_DATE.
Steve Grayson (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 13, 2004report abuse
This is great . only elvis can do this .- Elvis record ./ music sales have been selling like hot cakes all thru his career. Long May He Reign . Long Live Elvis ....///...
From An Avid Fan.
Apachee (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 13, 2004report abuse
We knew this years ago before GB was around. RIAA has been asleep at the wheel for many years. They keep digging and they will see that he has out sold the beatles. I think the beatles may be close, but not at the top. But for me this is not breaking news. This has been know by elvis fans all over the world.
Tigerman-GB (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 10, 2004report abuse
I think they mean the 1957 Christmas album thats been around for 47 years. Great news about the recognition, now lets get after them pesky Beatles.
corey3rd (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Which Christmas record are we talking about? Imagine what the actual sales of the Christmas album would be if they hadn't put it out in a dozen forms. Why would anyone buy "the Christmas Record" when they can buy "If Everyday Was Christmas" with twice the music for the same price?
the RIAA's website has 9 million listed as the total.
Mike M (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Why do we complain when people "press" etc get things wrong when in an article on our web site you give out different info. At one point you give sale figures for Chritmas Album of 9 million then in same article you say 7 million. If I am reading it wrong sorry. Happy New Year to you and everyone. MEP
Patrick68 (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Jean Michel, the media is not talking about this at all! USA Today, especially has ignored the news. I bet that if this was Beatles news then every darn paper in America would be talking about it. Maybe they will mention it when Elvis overtakes the Beatles!
jean michel (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Great! And that's only the "certified tip" of the iceberg.
It seems the BMG & the RIAA are still working on certifying and upgrading other titles.I guess the next step now is to officially take over the Beatles as US all categories/all time best seller. Can anyone in the US tell us if the news is well spread in the media (TV chanels , newspapers , mags...). I guess this kind of -free- promotion could easily boost the sales of both E1 & E2 plus the whole catalog in general.
Pharamond (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
There is still a long way to go because the real sales figures in the USA must be much higher, but it is a beginning. I am very glad Elvis finally is on top where he shoud have been all these years.
joemin (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
RIAA has the Christmas Album as 9 million, but last week it was at 6 million, so I suspect it should be 7 million now. Either way, it is great news. BMG have done great work since taking over RCA, I hope they keep it going. The good news of course is that there are more sales records already found but not yet included, and E1 and E2 are very, very close to adding abother platinum each. THe recent albums, Today, Tommorow and Forever, Close Up and 50 Greatest hits will surely all add to the total before long. I predict he will be over 125 million by this time next year!!
Pedro Nuno (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
The announcement, that was made, was obvious to all of us! But it is absolutely fantastic, since it represent more 14.5 millions records certified, and tell us that BMG/RCA is finaly doing it's homework! But i do not understand one point: What is the real number of "Elvis' Christmas Album" sales? Ist it over 9 millions?, or over 7 millions? LOng live the King.
Patrick68 (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Well let's say this about Garth Brooks, in 2001 when he released his last cd, he admitted that ELVIS was the #1 selling artist ever, and that Capitol his record company, was at the time promoting him as the #1 selling artist ever was just doing that for promotion. Elvis #1...Geez we knew that since 1977!
corey3rd (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
What's amazing is that Elvis has 97 different albums that have sold 500,000 or more. Who could have predicted that Double Dynamite would finally go plat? Perhaps BMG is finally trying to figure out what was pressed and shipped during 77-78. Garth Brooks gave up the ghost after putting out barely a dozen records.
gribz (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
Gee. no brainer. I never thought otherwise. Elvis was always the number one artist.
theenemyway (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
This is good news, but I don't think any of us ever believed all the hoo-haw about Garth Brooks being the top selling solo artist in U.S. history. Nothing against Garth, but we're talking about THE KING here!
leannrimesfreak (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
That's Great News!!I hope that BMG will promote the Christmas Album so It can reach Daimond.Elvis is number #1
bandit64 (profilecontact) wrote on Jan 9, 2004report abuse
So awesome!! Congrats Elvis!!

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