The returning Justin Timberlake and upstart rappers Macklemore and Ryan Lewis top the list of best-selling recording artists at the midyear point of 2013, according to Nielsen SoundScan. As of June 30th, Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience has sold just over two million copies – the only album to do so thus far this year.
The rest of the top five best-selling albums include Bruno Mars’ Unorthodox Jukebox (985,000 copies sold this year after a December release), Mumford & Sons’ nine-month-old Babel (884,000 sold in addition to 1.46 million sold by the end of last year), Blake Shelton’s Based on a True Story . . . (703,000) and Imagine Dragons’ Night Visions (692,000).
Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ “Thrift Shop” has broken a record for the most digital sales in the first six months of a calendar year, barely besting Gotye’s 5.5 million downloads of “Somebody That I Used to Know” by this time last year. Pink, Mars, Rihanna and Imagine Dragons round out the top five in digital singles.
Overall, sales of digital tracks are down two percent, to 682 million this year, while album sales are down six percent, to 142 million.