The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Estate of Michael Jackson, Epic Records and Legacy Recordings announced today that Michael Jackson’s THRILLER is the first album in RIAA Gold & Platinum Program history to be certified 30X multi-Platinum for U.S. sales, continuing The King of Pop’s reign as the biggest selling artist of all time with worldwide sales of over 100 million for Thriller and 1 billion overall.
“RIAA has awarded Gold & Platinum records on behalf of the music business for nearly 60 years, but this is the first time an artist has crossed the 30X multi-Platinum plateau,” said Cary Sherman, Chairman & CEO, RIAA. “We are honored to celebrate the unique status of Thriller in Gold & Platinum history. What an exceptional achievement and testament to Thriller’s enduring spot in our hearts and musical history.”
Michael Jackson’s masterpiece Thriller, produced by Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson, won a record setting 8 Grammys, more than any album ever, and has been earning awards and setting new standards of success since its release on November 30, 1982.
Thriller spent nearly 2 ½ years on the Billboard album chart and holds a modern day record of 37 weeks at No. 1. It was the first album in history to spend each of its first 80 weeks in the album chart’s Top 10, a feat only reached by one other album in the more than three decades since. During its 112th week on Billboard’s album chart, it became the first title ever to be certified RIAA 20X multi-Platinum (October 30, 1984). Worldwide, Thriller went to #1 in practically every country in the world, including the UK, France, Italy, Australia, Denmark, Belgium, South Africa, Spain, Ireland, New Zealand, Canada and apartheid South Africa.
During his extraordinary career, Michael Jackson sold more than a billion records worldwide, released 13 No.1 singles and became one of a handful of artists to be inducted twice into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Jackson as the Most Successful Entertainer of All Time and “Thriller” as the World’s Top-Selling Album of All Time. His artistry, choreography and music continue to inspire generations of pop, soul, R&B and hip-hop artists and fans.
“It is crystal clear that Michael Jackson is simply the greatest, and biggest artist of all time,” says LA Reid, Chairman & CEO of Epic Records. “Not only are his charts hits and sales stats staggering, but his pure musicality was other-worldly. Thriller was groundbreaking and electrifying…it was perfection. I am extremely proud that Michael is the heart and soul of Epic Records and he will forever remain the one-and-only King of Pop.”