Follow up - Did anyone think this album had a chance in hell - U2 Feedback

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Old 10-05-2001, 06:39 PM   #1
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Follow up - Did anyone think this album had a chance in hell

of surpassing Achtung Baby????

I sure as hell did not.....

Call me a pessimist, but in terms of album sales I figured this would do POP or lower......

I thought the days of being the 'Biggest Band in the World' were done.....

Of course, now we all now who the 'Biggest Band in the World'.......and so does the whole world!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 10-05-2001, 07:24 PM   #2
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I sure did, but I wasn't sure after what happened with POP. The reason U2 is back on top is not due to any single country or region, but rather strong sales everywhere. Most artist that are big have a strong region or country, but U2 unlike other artist have large sales figures everywhere which gives them top position worldwide this year despite not having the top album in most countries. Sales from country to country add up with the album closing in on 10,150,000 copies worldwide probably by the end of this week.
 
Old 10-05-2001, 07:56 PM   #3
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PoP really wasn't an album for the masses, and when they released it they had a big enough "cushion" should the album flop. Had they enough rehearsal time PoPmart would have gotten much better reviews and may have helped PoP out more during the first leg. If you look at PoP and PoPMarT as failure, then ATYCLB is the sound of redemption-the world over.
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Old 10-05-2001, 10:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by z edge:
PoP really wasn't an album for the masses, and when they released it they had a big enough "cushion" should the album flop. Had they enough rehearsal time PoPmart would have gotten much better reviews and may have helped PoP out more during the first leg. If you look at PoP and PoPMarT as failure, then ATYCLB is the sound of redemption-the world over.
when POP came out I was full of bravado, telling my non-U2 friends that the biggest band in the world was back and they were ready to conquer again. they did that with achtung baby and zoo tv and even zooropa. and it was a four year wait so i figured it was time for the biggest band in the world to soar to the top once again. but it didn't happen. the album was a *slight* disappointment to me (I liked POP, but it did not blow me away the way I hoped it would -- AB blew me away, ATYCLB blew me away, heck even Zooropa blew me away) and it did not do well on the American charts. I kind of got the feeling after it was all said and done that U2 was ready to descend to Sting like levels (not that there is anyhing wrong with the Stinger) and sell a million or so copies per record, to not much fanfare, and have tours that are kind of not talked about all that much. U2 has suprised me once again with the biggest tour (of all time??) and perhaps the biggest and best record of the past 13 months. They have defied the odds...once again.

Dr. Jack Ramsey says Michael Jordan once told him 'Don't ever bet against me'

I'm sure Bono would say the same thing to Ramsey's equivalent in the rock world.

'Don't ever bet against us.' They might be 50 and defying the odds again, ya never know.

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Old 10-06-2001, 04:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by STING:
I sure did, but I wasn't sure after what happened with POP. The reason U2 is back on top is not due to any single country or region, but rather strong sales everywhere. Most artist that are big have a strong region or country, but U2 unlike other artist have large sales figures everywhere which gives them top position worldwide this year despite not having the top album in most countries. Sales from country to country add up with the album closing in on 10,150,000 copies worldwide probably by the end of this week.

Sting
Where does the figure of 10,150.000 come from ? Is this official ?

Thanks

Mike

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Old 10-06-2001, 04:42 PM   #6
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Its unofficial, but I think very accurate. In mid May it was widely reported that the album was at 8.7 million copies world wide. By looking at chart positions around the world, taking into account population for each country, and using average sales at various positions on the album chart in the USA, I came up with a formula for estimating sales worldwide. I have kept an eye on this from week to week and try to stay conservitive in my estimates. And the end of August when I estimated 9.6 million in sales, Paul McGuinness had an interview in which he said the album had sold over 9 million copies. Last week, in Addition to anouncing that the entire Elevation 3rd leg was sold out, Clearchannel, the company that owns SFX and many radio stations announced that ATYCLB sales were over 10 million copies.
So when ever sales have been reported, my estimates have been very close or right on the money! Global sales really do add up. I actually initially had underestimated some sales in other parts of the world. When you add up sales no matter how small from the many countries that have charts and active music business, it can really add up to a lot.
U2 definitely has a shot at 11 million by Christmas!
 
Old 10-08-2001, 12:52 AM   #7
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I thought it might do pretty well, but I never suspected ATYCLB's commercial success to equal achtung baby!
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Old 10-10-2001, 12:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Hitman:
I kind of got the feeling after it was all said and done that U2 was ready to descend to Sting like levels (not that there is anyhing wrong with the Stinger) and sell a million or so copies per record, to not much fanfare, and have tours that are kind of not talked about all that much.
Heheh! Of course Sting also came back from the disappointing sales of Mercury Falling (I like it, but it's far from being his best) to sell tons with Brand New Day. I've been so happy the last couple of years for my favourite band and my favourite singer. Of course, I do feel that part of the reason for ATYCLB's big success, so much bigger than POP, is simply that it's a much better album than POP--I know a lot of people love innovation, but there is no substitute for good songwriting!

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Old 10-13-2001, 05:28 PM   #9
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I have to confess that I never ever even remotely anticipated the kind of success ATYCLB has had!

After Pop I thought U2 were about to hit the phase of their career where they do just whatever the heck they want, still making great music but with no one to really follow it except their core fans.

Even after ATYCLB started to show lots of promise to overtake AB, I had a hard time believing it. In fact, I'm still in denial. This may have to do with the fact that AB is my favorite album. But it's mostly because during most of my years as a fan, U2 were either not on tour in the states (I came in towards the end of Zoo TV) or were not very popular here. My idea of a normal life as a U2 fan was that I had to constantly defend myself to a world of unbelievers, and this was grounded in years of experience.

So now to see people on the street wearing U2 shirts, to overhear conversations in which people say they wouldn't pay more than $20 for a concert except for U2, and to have one of my 18 year old students quite cutely tell me he loves to listen to "All That You Left Behind" (his mistake, not mine) is truly more than I can comprehend. But I am enjoying the hype while it lasts. There's nothing better than living in a world where U2 are doing well.

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Old 10-13-2001, 07:38 PM   #10
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Remember while ATYCLB has equalled or surpassed ACHTUNG's first year sales of 10 million worldwide, that ACHTUNG today is still the better seller of the two with 16 million albums sold worldwide to date.
 
Old 10-13-2001, 10:01 PM   #11
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STING:

Even though AB has sold 16 million worldwide (although it may be less than that even), that number has increased over 10 years. That's a long time for it to sell 6 million more than ATYCLB. In 10 years, ATYCLB may have surpassed this.

Does anyone have the chart progress of JT in America? I remember it stayed at No. 1 for 9 weeks, in the top 10 for 35-39 weeks, in the top 40 for 58 weeks, and in the top 100 for 74 weeks, I was hoping maybe STING or WOMANFISH may have this information.

It's good to see ATYCLB doing so well on the US charts, but my question is: How come 'Stuck' is moving up the charts so slowly?
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Old 10-14-2001, 01:48 PM   #12
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Funny you mention JT Info, because I was actually thinking of driving down to my old University to look at the old Billboards on Microfilm to get all the chart positions each week in the USA and all the other countries listed. I just haven't done it yet because I know it would take several hours. Maybe next weekend. Joshua Tree did spend 103 weeks in the top 200. It then returned to the new Pop Catalog chart that came out in 1991 and stayed on that until 1994 or 1995.
 
Old 10-17-2001, 02:19 PM   #13
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I've posted a few times showing the actual week to week chart positions of AB, "Zooropa" and "POP" (and of course, ATYCLB now) but I don't have the week to week numbers for any U2 album before that - nor do I want them.

I did what STING said he's going to do a few years back. I went to a library and looked at old copies of Billboard on microfiche going through week to week numbers. But the reason I didn't do this for JT or R&H is because those albums came out in the pre-SoundScan era. There was a lot of bias on the charts in the pre-SoundScan era. Back then, Billboard relied on a string of music stores to report their sales. Sometimes, if a music store owner fancied a particular album, he might report some heavily biased numbers. Record labels used to like seeing their albums rise on the charts (as opposed to debuting near the top as they do now), giving the illusion/impression of a "hot" album. Then they wanted the album to peak, linger at or near the top for a while and SLOWLY descend. In order to have this pattern, often labels would bribe record store owners to say that an album is selling better than it was. Now that we have actual sales figures for each week, clearly this nice, pleasant pattern has proven not to be true. All one needs to do is look at ATYCLB's week to week performance to see how an album can fluctuate on the charts.

These days, it's very rare for an album to spend 9 weeks at #1. In the pre-SoundScan era, most hot albums would spend tons of time at or near the top. In contrast, a hot album now may only spend a week or two there, even though it may sell millions. Look at N'Sync's latest or Backstreet Boys' latest. Even Limp Bizkit's latest only spent two weeks on top. There's simply too much competition for an album to stay #1 for any extended period (over 5 weeks at #1).

Therefore, comparing JT's chart run with anything U2 have released in the 90's or later is not an accurate comparison. These are two different eras on the charts.
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Old 10-17-2001, 07:11 PM   #14
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Well I have to disagree a little here with you Dr. Who. Sure the 80s was a different era, the record industry was smaller, and most albums did not sell as much as they do today, in the USA that is. While the album chart back then is not nearly as accurate as soundscan is, its incorrect to say that there of no value. Just looking at how much an album sold still relates directly to how well it did on the charts back then. Plus, I remember the week that the charts switched from the old system to soundscan in May 1991 and there were a couple of steep drops, but mainly minor differences.
Thats for the USA. Point of sale systems have been used by other countries long before the USA. The British have used some type of point of sale system since the 1970s. The constant rotation of different albums at the top of the chart that we see here in the USA with Soundscan has been normal in the UK since the 1970s.
So while soundscan is much better(perfect) than the old system in the USA, I wouldn't go so far as to say that the old system is useless. Matching the sales of the album with chart performance proves the point.
 
 

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