The Billboard 200 is a record chart ranking the 200 highest-ranking music albums and EPs in the United States, published weekly by Billboard magazine. It is frequently used to convey the popularity of an artist or groups of artists. Often, a recording act will be remembered by its "number ones", those of their albums that outperformed all others during at least one week.
The chart is based mostly on sales (both at retail and digitally) of albums in the United States. The weekly sales period was originally Monday to Sunday when Nielsen started tracking sales in 1991, but since July 2015, tracking week begins on Friday (to coincide with the Global Release Date of the music industry) and ends on Thursday. A new chart is published the following Tuesday with an issue post-dated to the Saturday of the following week. The chart's streaming schedule is also tracked from Friday to Thursday.
New product is released to the American market on Fridays. Digital downloads of albums are also included in Billboard 200 tabulation. Albums that are not licensed for retail sale in the United States (yet purchased in the U.S. as imports) are not eligible to chart. A long-standing policy which made titles that are sold exclusively by specific retail outlets (such as Walmart and Starbucks) ineligible for charting, was reversed on November 7, 2007, and took effect in the issue dated November 17.
Beginning with the December 13, 2014 issue, Billboard updated the methodology of their album chart to also include on-demand streaming and digital track sales (as measured by Nielsen SoundScan) by way of a new algorithm, utilizing data from all of the major on-demand audio subscription services in the United States.
Adele Laurie Blue Adkins MBE (//; born 5 May 1988) is an English singer and songwriter. Graduating from the BRIT School for Performing Arts and Technology in 2006, Adele was given a recording contract by XL Recordings after a friend posted her demo on Myspace the same year. In 2007, she received the Brit Awards "Critics' Choice" award and won the BBC Sound of 2008 poll. Her debut album, 19, was released in 2008 to commercial and critical success. It is certified seven times platinum in the UK, and double platinum in the US. An appearance she made on Saturday Night Live in late 2008 boosted her career in the US. At the 51st Annual Grammy Awards in 2009, Adele received the awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.
Adele released her second studio album, 21, in early 2011. The album was well received critically and surpassed the success of her debut, earning the singer numerous awards in 2012, including a record-tying six Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year; two Brit Awards, including British Album of the Year, and three American Music Awards. The album has been certified 16 times platinum in the UK, and is the fourth best-selling album in the UK of all time. In the US it has held the top position longer than any album since 1985, and is certified Diamond. The album has sold 31 million copies worldwide.
The success of 21 earned Adele numerous mentions in the Guinness Book of World Records. She is the first woman in the history of the Billboard Hot 100 to have three simultaneous top 10 singles as a lead artist, and the first female artist to simultaneously have two albums in the top five of the Billboard 200 and two singles in the top five of the Billboard Hot 100. 21 is the longest-running number one album by a female solo artist in the history of the UK and US Album Charts. In 2012, she released "Skyfall", which she wrote and recorded for the James Bond film of the same name. The song won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, and a Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song. After taking a three-year break, Adele released her third studio album, 25, in 2015. It became the year's best-selling album and broke first week sales records in the UK and US. The lead single, "Hello", became the first song in the US to sell over one million digital copies within a week of its release.
In 2011 and 2012, Billboard named Adele Artist of the Year. In 2012, she was listed at number five on VH1's 100 Greatest Women in Music, and Time magazine named her one of the most influential people in the world. With sales of more than 100 million records, Adele is one of the best-selling recording artists in the world.
Aubrey Drake Graham (born October 24, 1986), better known as Drake, is a Canadian rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer and actor. He was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario. He first garnered recognition for his role as Jimmy Brooks on the television series Degrassi: The Next Generation. He later rose to prominence as a rapper, releasing several mixtapes before signing to Lil Wayne's Young Money Entertainment in June 2009.
Drake's EP, So Far Gone (2009), spawned the successful single "Best I Ever Had". His first studio album, Thank Me Later (2010), debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 and generated the single "Find Your Love". It was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). His second album, Take Care (2011), is his most successful to date, topping charts in the United States and Canada and producing the singles "Take Care", "Make Me Proud" and "The Motto", the last of which is also credited for popularizing the widely used acronym YOLO. In promotion of his second album, Drake embarked on the worldwide Club Paradise Tour, which became the most successful hip-hop tour of 2012, grossing over $42 million. His third studio album Nothing Was the Same was released on September 24, 2013. It was supported by the singles "Started from the Bottom" and "Hold On, We're Going Home".
His work has earned him a Grammy Award, three Juno Awards, six BET Awards, and set several significant Billboard charts records. Drake has the most number-one singles on the Billboard Hot Rap Songs chart with 12 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs with 10. He is one of two artists (the other being 50 Cent) to have simultaneously occupied the chart's top three positions.
Drake, along with being a record producer under the pseudonym Champagne Papi, has also written songs for other artists, including Alicia Keys ("Un-Thinkable (I'm Ready)"), Rita Ora ("R.I.P."), Jamie Foxx and Trey Songz.
One Direction (commonly abbreviated as 1D) is an English-Irish pop boy band based in London, composed of Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, and previously, Zayn Malik until his departure from the band on 25 March 2015. The group signed with Simon Cowell's record label Syco Records after forming and finishing third in the seventh series of the British televised singing competition The X Factor in 2010. Propelled to international success by social media, One Direction's four albums, Up All Night (2011), Take Me Home (2012), Midnight Memories (2013) and Four (2014) topped charts in most major markets, and generated hit singles including "What Makes You Beautiful", "Live While We're Young", and "Story of My Life". Their fifth studio album, Made in the A.M., was released in November 2015.
Their achievements include six Brit Awards, four MTV Video Music Awards, eleven MTV Europe Music Awards, seven American Music Awards (including Artist of the Year in 2014 and 2015), and nineteen Teen Choice Awards out of nineteen nominations, among many others. According to Nick Gatfield, the chairman and chief executive of Sony Music Entertainment UK, One Direction represented a $50 million business empire by June 2012. They were proclaimed 2012's "Top New Artist" by Billboard. According to the Sunday Times Rich List, by April 2013, they had an estimated personal combined wealth of £25 million ($41.2m) making them the second-wealthiest musicians in the UK under 30 years of age. In 2014, Forbes listed them the second-highest earning celebrities under 30, with the group earning an estimated $75 million from June 2013 to June 2014. In June 2015, Forbes listed their earnings at $130 million for the previous twelve months, and ranked them the fourth highest earning celebrities in the world.
After the release of Four, One Direction became the first band in the U.S. Billboard 200 history to have their first four albums debut at number one. Their third album, Midnight Memories, was the biggest-selling album worldwide of 2013 despite being released in late November. The band's Where We Are Tour in support of Midnight Memories and Four, was the highest-grossing concert tour in 2014, and the highest-grossing tour ever by a vocal group, generating $282 million. In 2014, Billboard named One Direction Artist of the Year. The band is temporarily on a hiatus that began in January 2016, which is expected to last around 18 months.