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Academy Awards Impacts Billboard Album and Song Sales

February 27, 2013 | Posted by Jeffrey Harris

Billboard reported the impact on album and charts sales as a result of the Academy Awards broadcast on Sunday, February 24.

The official sales figures are in and a lot of songs saw gains as a result of exposure from the Academy Awards. The show occurred on the final day of the Nielsen SoundScan sales tracking week.

Adele won an Oscar for her main song from Skyfall along with co-writer Paul Epworth. The song saw a 56% increase ins ales for the week ending February 24. The song sold 56,000 downloads, up 36,000 from the week previous. The song has now sold 1.6 million copies in the US. It is the first song from a James Bond movie to win an Academy Award. The song is expected to rise on the Billboard Hot 100 chart from number 83 when the new chart is released on February 28.

Shirley Bassey, who performed the Bond song for Goldfinger during an Oscars tribute to the film series, also saw a gain. her version of the song saw a 310% gain to sell 1,000 downloads for the week. Bassey was also mentioned 36,000 times on twitter, up from 150 mentions a day earlier. Traffic to Bassey’s Wikipedia page also went up by 30% on February 24 with 6,600 views.

Barbara Streisand also performed her 1974 number one Hot 100 hit song “The Way We Were” during a tribute on the show to the late Marvin Hamlisch. The composer passed away last August. He won won of his three Academy Awards for co-writing “The Way We Were” with Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman. Sales for the song increased 209% with 2,000 downloads for the week.

Two former Oscar winners also performed signature songs for musical films during the show. Jennifer Hudson performed “And I am Telling You I’m Not Going” from Dreamgirls and Catherin Zeta-jones performed “All That Jazz” from Chicago. Hudson’s song saw an increase of 246%, with sales of over 1,000 copies for the week. Zeta-Jones’ version of “All That Jazz” sold a reportedly negligible figure but it did see a gain as well.

The cast of Les Miserables sang a medley featuring “Suddenly,” “One Day More,” and “I Dreamed a Dream.” “I Dreamed a Dream” by Anne Hathaway also received additional exposure since Hathaway won the award for best supporting actress. The song saw a 70% sales gain, selling over 8,000 copies for the week.
Of all the songs performed on the show, it was the second-biggest seller of the week after Adele’s “Skyfall.”

The Les Miserables soundtrack dropped in sales by 19% this week though, selling 14,000 copies. Dreamgirls and Chicago albums saw sales gains of 162% and 23% respectively. Though there total sales were still fewer than 1,000 copies each.

Finally the official score album for Life of Pi by Mychael Danna saw gains of 230% for the week with 1,000 copies sold. This was the best sales week yet for the album.

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Jeffrey Harris
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