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|REVISION OF ELVIS' ALBUM SALES
A recent revision in the calculation of certified albums in the U.S. for The King of Rock and Roll
August 06, 2015 / Elvis Matters
A recent revision in the calculation of certified albums in the U.S. for The King of Rock and Roll has resulted in an increase of 1 million in Elvis Presley album sales. Elvis Presley's
official album sales in the U.S. as reported by the RIAA have increased to 135.5 million from the previously reported figure from January 2015.
The discrepancy of 1 million units in Elvis Presley's U.S. album total was found in an error in the calculation of his EP sales which are weighted differently than LPs. Elvis had 16
EPs that were certified either Gold, Platinum or Multi-Platinum.
The discrepancy was discovered by entertainment journalist Trina Young, and for her new book, Elvis: Behind The Legend.
The RIAA includes the sales of certified EPs, also called Shortform albums, in their album totals for each artist. But the EPs, which usually contain 3 to 5 songs, are not weighted the
same as LPs, which usually contain 10 to 12 songs. There was an error on the RIAA searchable website database in the weighting figure for Presley's Multi-Platinum EP sales had
resulted in an underreporting of 1 million units. In response, the RIAA acknowledged in email correspondence that they were going to revise the figures regarding Multi-Platinum
EPs and that Elvis Presley's total would increase as a result.
On July 16, 2015, the RIAA then revised the Elvis Presley album total on their website to reflect the most accurate record sales. For less than a week, Elvis Presley had moved
ahead of Garth Brooks to be the best-selling solo artist in terms of album sales with the revised figure of 135.5 units sold in the U.S. The Beatles are the best-selling group and
best-selling artist overall with 178 million albums sold, and Garth Brooks was in third place at 135 million.
However, just 5 days later on July 21, the RIAA awarded Garth Brooks another 1 million in album sales, bumping him up a half million ahead of Elvis Presley again. The RIAA did not
make any official statement about the increase of either Presley or Brooks.