“No Strings Attached,” the new album from boy-band sensation ‘N Sync, became the first album in history to sell more than 1 million units in one day.
According to estimates from its label, Jive, the album racked up first-day sales of 1.1 million copies Tuesday, nearly shattering the record for first week sales of an album.
Even more stunning, Wednesday’s sales of “No Strings Attached” also topped an estimated million units. Label sources told Daily Variety that the second-day sales dropoff was a mere 3%. At that rate, the album could conceivably sell in a week all 4.2 million copies of the album that were printed in its initial run.
“This was the largest first two-day sales we’ve ever seen,” said Stan Goman, chief operating officer for the Tower Records retail chain. He noted that ‘N Sync’s numbers were roughly three times greater than those for the Backstreet Boys’ “Millennium,” which held the record for most sales in one week: 1.13 million units. “We expect the momentum to continue,” he said.
The only other album to sell more than a million units its first week out was country superstar Garth Brooks’ “Double Live” (Capitol), which moved 1.085 million copies in 1998, to eclipse the previous first-week record of 950,000 copies set by Seattle grungemeisters Pearl Jam’s “Vs.” back in 1993.
The Whitney Houston-powered soundtrack to “The Bodyguard” (Arista) posted one-week sales of more than 1 million during the holiday season of 1992.
“The ‘N Sync album did the biggest first-day sales in our history — more than two times what the Backstreet Boys did,” said Musicland spokeswoman Dawn Walberg. “Second-day sales weren’t as high, but they were still phenomenal and we expect them to continue.”
The phenomenal success of ‘N Sync is another feather in the Jive Records cap. Last year, the BMG-distributed label had the No. 1 selling album of the year — the Backstreet Boys’ “Millennium.” ‘N Sync became part of the Jive family in December, leaving BMG-owned RCA after issuing the albums ” ‘N Sync,” which has shipped 10 million copies, and “Home for Christmas” (2 million).