Chart Watch Extra: Marley Dominates Catalog Albums
Bob Marley & the Wailers' Legend returns to #1 on the Top Catalog Albums chart. This is the album's 112th week at #1 since 1991, when Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales for Billboard. That's more weeks on top than the two closest runners-up combined. (They are Creed's My Own Prison, with 54 weeks at #1, and the Grease soundtrack, with 52 weeks on top.)
Catalog albums are albums that have been in release long enough to have passed their commercial peak. But many continue to sell at a steady clip. Sometimes, events (a hit movie, a Grammy sweep, the artist's death) bring them back to the top 10.
Twenty-five albums have logged 12 or more weeks at #1 on Top Catalog Albums since 1991. Eleven of those albums are greatest hits sets or compilations, such as the Marley retrospective and Eric Clapton's Time Pieces/The Best Of Eric Clapton. Nine are regular studio albums.
Three holiday albums have logged 12 or more weeks at #1 on the catalog chart: Kenny G's Miracles: The Holiday Album, Mannheim Steamroller's A Fresh Aire Christmas and Now That's What I Call Christmas!
Two Various Artists compilations made the grade: I Can Only Imagine: Ultimate Power Anthems Of The Christian Faith and the aforementioned Now That's What I Call Christmas!
One movie soundtrack qualifies. Grease sold so well as a catalog album that Paramount re-released the John Travolta/Olivia Newton-John film theatrically in March 1998, a few months before the 20th anniversary of the film's original release.
Since 1991, only one act has had two albums that topped the catalog chart for 12 or more weeks. Creed held the top spot for 54 weeks with My Own Prison and 13 weeks with Human Clay. That's a sign of how massive the band was for a few years at the turn of the century.