Taylor Swift sets a jaw-dropping new sales record, and it’s making history

By Jim Lawson on April 29, 2024

Taylor Swift’s “The Tortured Poets Department” had already broken many records on its way to what was a certain number one debut on the Billboard 200 album chart. Now it’s racked up the highest sales week in nine years.

The album takes the top spot on the chart with 2.61 million equivalent album units earned. That’s the largest amount of equivalent album units since 2015, when Adele blasted in with 3.482 million units of her album “25.”

Taylor Swift sets a jaw-dropping new sales record, and It's making history.
Courtesy of Republic Records

Of those 2.61 million units, 1.914 million copies came from traditional album sales, meaning digital downloads, CDs, vinyl and cassettes, as opposed to streaming. That gives “Tortured Poets” the third-largest sales week in the modern era, which Billboard dates to 1991, the beginning of electronic sales tracking.

The only two albums that have sold more in a single week are Adele’s “25,” with 3.378 million, and NSYNC’s “No Strings Attached” with 2.416 million.

What’s more, Swift now ties Jay-Z for the solo artist with the most number albums on the Billboard 200 chart, both have 14. Only The Beatles have more, with 19.

Taylor responded to the massive numbers by writing on Instagram, “My mind is blown. I’m completely floored by the love you’ve shown this album. 2.6 million ARE YOU ACTUALLY SERIOUS?? Thank you for listening, streaming, and welcoming ‘Tortured Poets’ into your life. Feeling completely overwhelmed. I was already so fired up to get back to the tour but you doing THIS?? May 9th can’t come soon enough.”

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