The top albums of 2018 according to Amazon sales-rank data

6 months ago by James Mattone in Facts, Features

2018 was an eventful year when it came to musical comings and goings: ABBASwedish House Mafia, and Hootie & The Blowfish are all back together. On the breakup front, One Direction went their separate ways. Meanwhile, Avicii, Mac Miller, Aretha Franklin, Pete Shelley, and dozens more musicians from several decades of music history all died. And lest we not forget, Kanye West met face-to-face with the President of the United States.

It was also a good year for physical albums and vinyl; although vinyl sales have been dropping at one of the nation's largest physical retailers, Amazon ($NASDAQ:AMZN) is still offering plenty of new hits and classics for consumers to buy alongside their copies of Becoming by Michelle Obama and 10 gallons of frozen bone broth.

This list covers only physically released albums; streaming is a whole different story, as differing demographics cause obvious differences in the bought albums and most streamed songs of the year.

This is the Greatest Show... And the Album of the Year

The Greatest Showman, an album for the movie distributed by the soon-to-be Disney-owned 20th Century Fox ($NYSE:DIS), ranked as a Vinyl & CD bestseller for a full 194 days in 2018, and had an average sales rank of 1.8.

In other words, the Hugh Jackman-starring musical about P.T. Barnum was not only a smash at the box office, where it raked in $435 million, but also dominated the record sales charts of 2018. It even beat out perennial powerhouse Hamilton, which ranked second with an average rank of 7.41.

Besides Hamilton, no other album that charted for over half of 2018 came close to what The Greatest Showman accomplished in 2018 and still accomplishes today. As of today, January 7, 2019, The Greatest Showman is still the number one album on Amazon.

Name  Category Rank (Average)  Category Rank (Count)
The Greatest Showman  1.80 194
Hamilton (Original Broadway Cast Recording)(Explicit)(2CD)  7.41 194
Precious Memories Collection [2 CD]  14.90 194
Evolve  23.26 195
From The Fires  23.86 194
Traveller  25.55 195
Divide (Deluxe Version)  28.95 194
From A Room: Volume 1  32.32 195
From A Room: Volume 2  33.98 195
Frozen  42.89 190
Garth Brooks: The Ultimate Hits  55.05 186

Other interesting 2018 best-sellers were the Christian CD box set of Precious Memories Collection, albums released by rock bands Imagine Dragons (Evolve) Greta Van Fleet (From The Fires), three separate albums by country singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton, and, of course, Frozen.

With albums based on the lives of P.T. Barnum and Alexander Hamilton topping sales charts in 2018, history is officially the coolest school subject in the world.

A Star is Born: The top recent albums in December 2018

Snubbed out of the Golden Globes for Best Drama, A Star is Born at least dethroned The Greatest Showman for the best selling album on Amazon in December.

The re-re-re-remake of the musical romantic drama film saw its official album beat out the likes of Christmas albums that usually perform well during the holidays, as well as the recent release of Bruce Springsteen's Springsteen on Broadway recording, which was based on the one-man show The Boss did that sold-out Broadway throughout 2018.

Name Category Rank (Average)  Category Rank (Count)
A Star is Born (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)  1.48 29
The Greatest Showman  3.17 29
Look Up Child  4.21 29
Christmas Is Here!  6.66 29
Hamilton (Original Broadway Cast Recording)(Explicit)(2CD)  6.76 29
Springsteen on Broadway  8.93 29
Bohemian Rhapsody  9.14 29
Frozen  10.45 29
The Beatles (The White Album) [6 CD + Blu-ray]  11.72 29


Bohemian Rhapsody, a movie based on Queen's Freddy Mercury that beat A Star is Born for the Best Picture Golden Globe, charted within the top-ten, averaging a rank of 9.14 over 29 days.

The Clean Version of Music

Forget Cardi B. Oral-B, owned by Procter & Gamble ($NYSE:PG), had one of the hottest runs on the Amazon album sales charts in 2018.

In a weird category-related error, an Oral-B electric toothbrush that retails for $149.99 (!!!) actually charted multiple times in Amazon's CDs & Vinyls category during 2018.

Yes, we're serious.

Not only did this toothbrush chart within this category, it was also considered the best-selling CD & Vinyl product on one day: November 29, 2018, or almost a week after Thanksgiving.

Name As Of Date Category Rank (Average)
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 12/2/18 0:00 88
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 12/1/18 0:00 46
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 11/29/18 0:00 17
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 11/28/18 0:00 5
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 11/27/18 0:00 1
Oral-B Genius Pro 8000 Electronic Power Rechargeable Battery Electric Toothbrush with Bluetooth Connectivity, Rose Gold, Powered by Braun 11/26/18 0:00 2
Oral-B 8000 Electronic Toothbrush, Orchid Purple, Powered by Braun 11/24/18 0:00 95
Oral-B 8000 Electronic Toothbrush, Orchid Purple, Powered by Braun 11/23/18 0:00 75

File this under weird, but true, and let this serve as a reminder to brush your teeth twice a day!

(Subscribers can see the full list of best-selling CDs & Vinlys on Amazon, and see the most up-to-date data on all Amazon products, here)

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James Mattone

James is the Associate Editor at Thinknum Media, mainly covering video games, food, and tech news, but not afraid to head into Sephora or beauty brands if need be...

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