Somehow, The Eagles: Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975—a literal compilation of “Hotel California,” “Take it Easy,” and some other baby boomer easy-listening shit—has beaten Michael Jackson’s Thriller to become the best-selling album of all time. You have every right to be outraged, and I have every right to blame the shift on your Dockers-donning dad.
According to AP, the Recording Industry Association of America has recognized the comp as 38x platinum (industry speak for sales and streams reaching 38 million copies. For context: ten song downloads is equivalent to one album sale and 1,500 album streams equals one album purchase.) Thriller, in comparison, is 33x platinum.
By those streaming metrics, you might wonder why a greatest hits compilation of a group’s most popular songs could be considered a proper album and honey, you’re right to be curious. It’s fucked!
Don Henley of the Eagles shared a statement following his group’s good fortune, perhaps while cackling, riding a gold-plated ‘66 Shelby Cobra Roadster into the Malibu sunset:
“We are grateful for our families, our management, our crew, the people at radio and, most of all, the loyal fans who have stuck with us through the ups and downs of 46 years. It’s been quite a ride.”
Next time you see an old fart reach for a stack of The Eagles’ greatest hits at his local Cracker Barrel, you swat that out of his hand, ya hear?