Queen becomes the first act to sell six million copies of an individual album in the UK.
Their first Greatest Hits collection, which includes the hits We Will Rock You and Bohemian Rhapsody, has extended its lead after being Britain’s highest-selling album for several years.
The Official Charts Company said one in three British families now owned a copy of the 1981 compilation.
Queen guitarist Brian May said the feat was “incredible”.
“Great news, amazing news from the Official Charts Company,” he said.
“I just want to say thanks to everyone who has supported us through the years, we hope to continue to serve you.”
Band mate Roger Taylor added: “Wonderful. Who would have thought it? And all due to the great British public. Thank you. A great honor!”
Queen’s Greatest Hits leads the all-time album chart by some 900,000 copies, ahead of Abba’s 1992 greatest hits collection Gold.
However, Adele’s 21 is catching up on the top spot quickly. It has sold an impressive 4.7 million copies in just three years.
The Official Charts Company said Queen’s album – which also features Another One Bites The Dust, Bicycle Race and Fat Bottomed Girls – regularly sells several thousand copies per week, particularly around Christmas.
The majority of the sales have been on vinyl, CD and cassette – with only 124,000 downloads to date.
“Becoming the first album to pass six million sales is a quite incredible achievement by Queen,” said Martin Talbot, chief executive of the Official Charts Company.
Queen’s Greatest Hits is also their biggest-selling album in the US, where it is certified as having sold 8 million copies, according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Top 5 UK album sales:
- Greatest Hits – Queen (1981) – 6 million
- Gold – Greatest Hits – Abba (1992) – 5.1 million
- Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – Beatles (1967) – 5.1 million
- 21 – Adele (2011) – 4.7 million
- What’s The Story Morning Glory – Oasis (1995) – 4.6 million
Source: Official Charts Company
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