The King of Pop has been overthrown. The Eagles’ greatest hits album is now history’s best-selling album of all-time, unseating Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), The Eagles’ “Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975” has sold more than 38 million copies and streams since its 1976 release, making it certified 38x platinum. Jackson’s “Thriller” (1982) is now in second place at 33x platinum, reports the Associated Press. The Eagles also claimed the third spot in RIAA’s list with 1977’s “Hotel California,” which is 26x platinum.
RIAA last gathered sales numbers for the Eagles’ greatest hits album in 2006, when it was 29x platinum. The group updated sales and streams for “Thriller” in 2017.
“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,” Eagles member Don Henley said in a statement.
Up until 2013, RIAA designated platinum status from the sale of 1 million albums or songs. For the past five years, the organization has added streaming from music services and YouTube to be included in its certification criteria. Currently, 1,500 streams of an album equal one album sale as do 10 song downloads.
Henley was the drummer and co-vocalist for the band from 1971 to 1980 until it disbanded. He returned in 1994 when the group reunited, and it was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998. The Eagles went into hiatus for a year in 2016 after founding member Glenn Frey died.
Henley is the band’s last original member. He hired Vince Gill and Deacon Frey to replace Glenn after his death. The Eagles received the Kennedy Center Honor in 2016.
The Eagles are known for hit songs such as Hotel California, Take It Easy, Witchy Woman, Peaceful Easy Feeling, and Desperado.