Garth Brooks again surpasses Elvis as U.S. solo sales champ

Garth Brooks performs at New York's Waldorf Astoria Hotel on Nov. 17, 2014.
(Brian Ach / Getty Images )

Garth Brooks has once again pushed past Elvis Presley to take back the title of solo artist who has sold more albums than any other in U.S. history, according to the Recording Industry Assn. of America.

Brooks’ comeback album “Man Against Machine,” released Nov. 11, has been certified platinum for sales of more than 1 million copies, pushing up his overall album total to 135 million copies -- that’s one gold record ahead of Presley’s current RIAA total of 134.5 million.

Brooks first eclipsed the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll in 2000, and in subsequent years they’ve swapped positions as ongoing album sales have added to each performer’s totals.


The title of overall best-selling artist of all time still belongs to the Beatles, who currently have 178 million albums to their credit, according to RIAA album sales totals.

Led Zeppelin on occasion has surpassed Presley and Brooks to snag the No. 2 spot in the rankings, but Presley and Brooks have maintained comfortable leads over the next best-selling solo artist: Billy Joel. Joel is credited with 81.5 million albums sold in the U.S., putting him at No. 6 on the current overall list, behind Led Zeppelin at No. 4 (111.5 million) and the Eagles at No. 5 (101 million).

“Man Against Machine” logged six weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s country albums chart, and reached No. 5 on the overall Billboard 200 chart after its first week of release.

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