The albums released by Universal Music Group and its family of labels have held No. 1 on the Billboard 200 for 38 weeks so far this year, setting a new chart record. According to internal UMG research, the company surpassed the previous record of 36 weeks that a single music company spent at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in a calendar year – a mark that UMG itself set in 2020. UMG claims to be the first music company to achieve this level of dominance on the charts since MRC Data, formerly known as Nielsen Soundscan, began tracking weekly album sales in 1991.
The longest-running UMG album at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 this year – accounting for over a quarter of the 38-week total – was by Morgan Wallen. Dangerous: the double album (Big Loud / Republic), who spent 10 weeks at the top. This was followed by Olivia Rodrigo Sour (Interscope) and Drake Boy in love certified (Republic), who both spent five weeks at No.1.
Taylor Swift has scored no less than three No.1 albums for UMG this year for a total of six weeks at the top, with Republic’s Always, Without fear (Taylor version) and Red (Taylor version) all spend time at the top. The latter album topped the most recent Billboard 200 after selling 605,000 equivalent album units in the United States during the week ending Nov. 18, according to MRC Data.
Other versions of UMG who have spent several weeks atop the Billboard 200 this year were those of Billie Eilish Happier than ever (Darkroom / Interscope), who spent three weeks at No.1, while Justin Bieber’s Justice (Def Jam) and Moneybagg Yo’s The pain of a gangsta (Interscope) each held first place for two weeks.
The rest of UMG’s albums to spend time at # 1 this year were there for just one week. They are: Rod Wave’s Soulfly (Interscope), J Cole’s The off season (Roc Nation), Lil Baby and Lil Durk’s The voice of heroes (Quality Control / Motown), Pop Smoke’s Faith (Republic), Kanye West Donda (Def Jam) and Summer Walker’s Always on (Interscope).
This isn’t the first time UMG has signed a Billboard 200 feat this year. In June, the albums released by the company occupied nine of the top 10 charts, a phenomenon only reached five more times in the 64-year history of the Billboard 200 – according to UMG internal research – all of which were also by UMG. .