Taylor Swift has made history yet again. As her acclaimed new album folklore debuts at No.1 on the Billboard 200 this week with over 846k equivalent albums, she becomes the only artist in history to have 7 albums sell half a million copies of a studio album in a week.
Folklore’s success marks Swift’s seventh consecutive No.1 entry on the Billboard 200 and 6th consecutive studio album with over 800,000 albums in the first week. At time of writing, folklore stands out as the top selling album of 2020 with global sales over 2 million worldwide and over half a billion total streams on audio and video in just one week. It is also the biggest album debut by an artist since Swift last released her award-winning album, Lover, just 11 months ago.
Swift’s new album saw over 627,000 album sales and nearly 260 million on-demand audio streams during the week of July 24 through July 30. The album also saw over 86,000 song sales, which was aided by the sale of physical singles of “Cardigan” on her website.
The indie-leaning album, a surprise move away from the star’s pop roots, has received a string of acclaimed reviews since its release. The album also sold 37,060 copies in its first week in the UK alongside 24,050 streams and 12,152 album downloads, earning Swift the top spot in the charts. It also means Swift is the first female artist to score five UK Number 1 studio albums in the 21st century.
On the UK, singles chart, Swift also dominated. “Cardigan” debuted at Number 6, “Exile” – her collaboration with Bon Iver – went in at Number 8 and “The 1” at Number 10.
Much of folklore was co-written with The National’s Aaron Dessner, who said Swift had texted him in April to ask if he wanted to collaborate with her.
“We were pretty much in touch daily for three or four months by text and phone calls,” he said in a recent interview. “Some of it was about production and restructuring things but a lot of it was just excitement. We both felt that this was some of the best work we have done.”
Speaking to Pitchfork, Dessner said that he first met Swift on the set of Saturday Night Live in 2014, and that Swift had come to see The National perform last year.
Folklore is out now and can be bought here.