(FILES) US pop star Michael Jackson waves to photographers during a press conference in Paris on March 19, 1996. Michael Jackson died on June 25, 2009 after suffering a cardiac arrest, sending shockwaves sweeping across the world and tributes pouring in for the tortured music icon revered as the “King of Pop.” AFP PHOTO / VINCENT AMALVY (Photo credit should read VINCENT AMALVY/AFP/Getty Images)
Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” the biggest album in history, on Thursday notched up another mark as it was certified as selling 33 million copies in the United States.
The Recording Industry Association of America gave the new sales total for the 1982 work one year after the group started to factor in streaming.
“Thriller” — which produced all-time hits such as “Beat It” and “Billie Jean” — appears unlikely to lose its crown of top-selling album anytime soon.
The album came out in a golden age commercially for music, with album sales robust and MTV reaching new audiences.
Album sales have plummeted in the past decade amid the availability of instant music online, although music industry profits have rebounded due to the rise of streaming.
The second top-selling album in US history is the Eagles’ “Their Greatest Hits (1971-1975),” which has sold 29 million copies and last won a new certification in 2006.
Jackson’s estate says that “Thriller” sold more than 105 million copies worldwide, although global data remains difficult to quantify.
Separately, the recording association certified Thursday that Jackson’s high-stakes followup to “Thriller,” 1987’s “Bad,” had reached sales of 10 million copies in the United States.