Linkin Park’s debut record, Hybrid Theory, was the best-selling record of 2001, according to SoundScan, the music industry’s record keeper of sales for all music products.
Hits like “One Step Closer” and “In the End” propelled the California alternative metal quintet to sales of 4.8 million. Thanks to the hit single “It Wasn’t Me,” Shaggy’s Hot Shot came in second, with sales of 4.5 million.
‘N Sync’s Celebrity and Enya’s A Day Without Rain came in third and fourth, respectively, with each moving just more than 4.4 million copies. Rounding out the top ten were Staind’s Break the Cycle (4.2 million), Alicia Keys’ Songs in A Minor (4.1 million), Destiny’s Child’s Survivor (3.7 million), Creed’s Weathered (3.5 million), the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack (3.4 million), and the hits collection Now That’s What I Call Music! Vol. 6 (3.1 million).
Overall, total music sales were down five percent from 2000. The only categories that enjoyed significant sales increases were Christian/gospel, soundtracks and new age, which went up eighty-three percent thanks largely to Enya.
As for the best-selling records of the past decade, Shania Twain’s Come On Over topped the list, moving 14 million copies. The rest of the top five were Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill (13.9 million); Metallica’s Metallica, a.k.a. “The Black Album” (13 million); the Backstreet Boys’ Millennium (12 million); and the Whitney Houston-led soundtrack to The Bodyguard (11.7 million).