Beyonce has not only the year's best selling R&B album, but the only album (in R&B) to actually sell over 500,000 copies this year.
According to Billboard, who released a Top 10 Selling R&B/Hip-Hop Albums, Year To Date, chart Wednesday, Beyonce's self-titled album far exceeds some of the year's most recognized releases and helps to prop up sales in an otherwise down year.
"Beyonce's self-titled set, which appeared out of thin air when it was released last December, stands as the best selling R&B/hip-hop album of the year. With 702,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan, the album is a quarter-million units ahead of the year's second-biggest set, Pharrell Williams' "GIRL" (452,000). "Beyonce" spent 10 weeks at No. 1 on the weekly Top R&B/Hip-Hop albums chart, while Williams occupied the position three times," reports Billboard. "Beyonce" is 2014's only R&B/hip-hop album that has sold 500,000 units, compared to the previous two years where three titles surpassed the half million mark by mid-year."
The top ten chart also includes Michael Jackson's "Xscape" (no.5, 339,000 copies); John Legend's "Love In The Future" (no.6, 298,000 copies) and Toni Braxton and Babyface's "Love, Marriage & Divorce" (no. 10, 211,000 copies).
"19.13 million R&B/hip-hop albums have been sold in 2014 — down 19 percent versus the 23.7 million sold a year ago. As for digital song sales, 124.55 million have been sold, down 9 percent compared to the 136.74 million last year at this point point," reports Billboard.
Three R&B artists, namely Pharrell, John Legend and Jason Derulo, have sold over 3.6 million copies of singles including "Talk Dirty," "All of Me" and "Happy" year-to-date.