December 13, 2013 at 10:52 am

Amazon’s Music Numbers Reveal Differences in Fans Based on Format

amazon_best_selling 2013 all timeEverybody is releasing year-end lists right now, because that’s what we do in December to put a neat bow on the year, and maybe gain a little perspective on what it all meant.

Amazon, not content to have conveniently dominated the holiday news cycle with tales of flying delivery drones, went one better than revealing numbers for 2013 and divulged, for the first time, its top-selling music titles of all time. They vary quite a bit by format, indicating that they way you get your tunes delivered could say something about the music you enjoy.

For starters it’s interesting that most of the all-time top sellers are relatively recent. Music sales might have been declining overall, but not where the top hits on Amazon are concerned.

All Time

Since the dawn of time, sales of compact discs on Amazon have favored female artists with a focus on vocal performance:

CDs

1.       21 – Adele

2.       I Dreamed A Dream – Susan Boyle

3.       Wicked (2003 Original Broadway Cast) – Stephen Schwartz

4.       Raising Sand – Robert Plant & Alison Krauss

5.       Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

6.       Fearless  – Taylor Swift

7.       Back to Black – Amy Winehouse

8.       19 – Adele

9.       Taking the Long Way – Dixie Chicks

10.    Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends – Coldplay

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Buyers of MP3 albums exhibit a slightly more “indie”- and “guitar”-slanted taste:

MP3 Albums

1.       Born This Way – Lady Gaga

2.       Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

3.       The Lumineers – The Lumineers

4.       21 – Adele

5.       Mylo Xyloto – Coldplay

6.       Some Nights (Explicit) – Fun

7.       My Head Is An Animal – Of Monsters And Men

8.       El Camino – The Black Keys

9.       Speak Now – Taylor Swift

10.    The Suburbs – Arcade Fire

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MP3 singles are more for viral hits. This proves that MP3 buyers are not content to watch the “Gangnam Style” video on repeat — they want to own it, too:

Top 10 Best-Selling MP3 Songs of All Time:

1.       “Call Me Maybe” – Carly Rae Jepsen

2.       “Somebody That I Used To Know [feat. Kimbra]” – Gotye

3.       “We Are Young (feat. Janelle Monáe)” – Fun.

4.       “I Gotta Feeling” – The Black Eyed Peas

5.       “Rolling In The Deep” – Adele

6.       “Gangam Style” – Psy

7.       “Dynamite” –  Taio Cruz

8.       “Where We Came From” – Phillip Phillips

9.       “Hey Ho” – The Lumineers

10.    “Some Nights” – Fun.

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Of course, it is December, so Amazon couldn’t resist revealing its numbers for the year in the same categories. Once again, the lists vary more than one might have imagined…

2013 Only

The CD-buying crowd leans towards singers this year, and appears to skew a bit older in taste. It’s no accident that Daft Punk’s album feels like it has been around since an alternate universe in the ’70s.

CDs

1.       Random Access Memories – Daft Punk

2.       The 20/20 Experience – Justin Timberlake

3.       To Be Loved  – Michael Bublé

4.       All That Echoes – Josh Groban

5.       The Next Day [Deluxe Edition] – David Bowie

6.       Passione [Deluxe Edition] – Andrea Bocelli

7.       Old Yellow Moon  – Emmylou Harris

8.       Based On A True Story… – Blake Shelton

9.       People, Hell & Angels – Jimi Hendrix

10.    Modern Vampires of the City – Vampire Weekend

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MP3 albums skew way more towards the indie, long-tail end of things. Tegan and Sara are the top sellers, for crying out loud, and Mozart is at #3. This could be due in part to Amazon putting MP3 albums on extreme sale from time to time:

Top 10 Best-Selling MP3 Albums of 2013

1.       Heartthrob – Tegan and Sara

2.       Modern Vampires of the City – Vampire Weekend

3.       Big Mozart Box – Various artists

4.       The 20/20 Experience – Justin Timberlake

5.       100 Must-Have Movie Classics, Vol. 2 – Various artists

6.       The Marshall Mathers LP2 (Deluxe) – Eminem

7.       Trouble Will Find Me – The National

8.       Based on a True Story… – Blake Shelton

9.       Random Access Memories – Daft Punk

10.    Native – OneRepublic

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Meanwhile, the top Amazon MP3 singles from this year are mostly Top 40 hits with a chance of Hootie:

Top 10 Best-Selling MP3 Songs of 2013

1.       “Blurred Lines [feat. T.I., Pharrell]” – Robin Thicke

2.       “Roar” – Katy Perry

3.       “Royals” – Lorde

4.       “Get Lucky” – Daft Punk

5.       “My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (Light Em Up)” – Fall Out Boy

6.       “Wagon Wheel” – Darius Rucker

7.       “Wake Me Up” – Avicii

8.       “Mirrors” – Justin Timberlake

9.       “Cruise (Remix)” – Florida Georgia Line

10.    “Come & Get It” – Selena Gomez