When it comes to rock albums, numerous bands have managed to captivate the fans with their music. If you want to take a look at the best-selling rock albums of all time, we have to go through the records of The Recording Industry Association of America® (RIAA). Let’s take a look at what their chart says.

‘Bat Out of Hell,’ Meat Loaf (1977)

This is a really special album since Meat Load joined with producer Jim Steinman and producer Todd Rundgren to create an album that explains teenage behaviors.

Jim Steinman was also known for his works on Air Siplly and Bonnie Tyler. The album became one of the greatest debut albums of all time and was even certified platinum 14 times. The album consisted of hits such as “Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad”, and “Paradise by the Dashboard Light.” Over 14 million copies of the album were sold around the world.

‘Simon and Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits,’ Simon and Garfunkel

Who knew that after being disbanded, they would gain more fame? Two years after Simon and Garfunkel separated, they created an album where they compiled 14 of their greatest hits.

Among those 14, four were their unreleased live versions, and the remaining were studio versions. It was a great opportunity for the new and old fans to sit back and enjoy the legendary duo’s music. Over 14 million albums were sold over the world.

‘Tapestry,’ Carole King (1971)

Another album with over 14 million certified units, ‘Tapestry’ by Carole King. She told the world that even a woman can be a great songwriter and compete in the world of music. Her soft-rock was very influential to artists like Tori Amos and Barbara Streisand.

The album won Album of the Year, Song of the Year (“You’ve Got a Friend”), and Record of the Year, all together the album won four Grammys. Over 30 million copies of the album were sold over the world.

‘Greatest Hits 1974-1978,’ Steve Miller Band (1978)

Although the album was released back in the 70s, still many American high schools stream this album. Unlike other albums, this album consists of only 6songs, The Joker, Fly Like an Eagle, Book of Dreams, “The Joker,” “Jungle Love,” and “Take the Money and Run.” 

With such hits, Steve Miller really managed to make this one of the greatest-selling rock albums of all time.

‘The Beatles 1962-1966,’ The Beatles (1973), 15 million

The record done by the original Beatles, also known by the name “Red Album” was a craft of the founding members of The Beatles, John Lennon and Paul McCartney. This was an album full of the Beatles’ greatest hits from their early years.

The album consisted of songs like “Love Me Do,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” “Can’t Buy Me Love,” and “Yesterday.” The album of their hits did so well that they released another.

‘Greatest Hits,’ Journey (1998), 15 million

How can we forget the collection of the biggest arena-rock band from the 80s. Journey lead singer Steve Perry was really known for having extraordinary vocals, but after some medical issues, he had to permanently leave the band.

To end the decade, the band released ‘Greatest Hits’ which did great work. The album consisted of some of Journey’s greatest hits including “Don’t Stop Believin”, “Lights,” “Wheel in the Sky,” “Lovin’, Touchin’, Squeezin'”, “Any Way You Want,” and “Open Arms.”

‘The Dark Side of the Moon,’ Pink Floyd (1973), 15 million

Who better than Pink Floyd when it comes to giving the audience a true listening experience? The transaction, the flow of their music, everything about Pink Floyd is just perfect and makes them special.

Well, their production is also top tier since the Grammy winner for his engineering work, Alan Parsons is behind it. Their album stayed on the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart for more than 957 weeks.

‘Metallica,’ Metallica (1991), 16 million

The album ‘Metallica’ also known by the name “Black Album” broke multiple records. Bob Rock proved again that his productions are always top-tier.

The album was filled with simpler songs with slower tempos. Although it wasn’t very metal, the new fans loved the album, and their debut record was even placed as No. 1 on the Billboard 200. This was also the fourth album in U.S. history to spend 550 weeks in the chart.

Physical Graffiti, Led Zeppelin (1975), 16 million

Led Zeppelin’s 25-minute album ‘Physical Graffiti’ was another great success for the group. With songs like “In My Time of Dying,” “Trampled Under Foot,” “Kashmir,” “Custard Pie,” and “The Wanton Song”, this album is considered one of the band’s greatest works.

Physical Graffiti is also considered the greatest studio achievement in the history of rock. The double album was also certified 16 times platinum.

Jagged Little Pill, Alanis Morissette (1992), 16 million

Alanis Morissette’s first album ‘Jagged Little Pill’ was first introduced to the United States fabs and in no time she arrived into the mainstream of music.

The artist wrote every lyric of the song herself and composed the song with the help of Glen Ballard. Her popular songs from the album such as “You Oughta Know” and “Ironic” were placed on Billboard’s Hot 100. She produced 6 singles from the album and over 33 million copies were sold over the world.

Greatest Hits, Elton John (1974), 17 million

Elton John’s ‘Greatest Hits’ is still considered as one of the masterpieces and his best-selling record in the United States. Seems like a collection of classic rock songs could never go

The album featured popular tracks such as  “Your Song,” “Bennie and the Jets,” and “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” John released several other greatest hits albums that year which were another great success.

‘Boston,’ Boston (1976), 17 million

Bonston’s self-debut album became one of their greatest hits. Over 17 million were sold in the United States alone. Thanks to Tom Scholz, the MIT-trained engineer who built his recording studio in an apartment basement and made the album with the help of Brad Delp.

With unforgettable tracks such as “More Than a Feeling,” “Peace of Mind,” and “Foreplay/Long Time,” the album has sold over 20 million copies internationally. The album is still popular on rock radio.

The Beatles 1967-1970,’ The Beatles (1973), 17 million

Previously we talked about how the Beatles’ collection album, Red Album, became one of their greatest crafts. If that wasn’t enough, they created another collection named ‘Blue Album.’

The collection was another major success for the group. It went no. 1 on the Billboard Top LPs & Tape chart in the US. Although there

Appetite for Destruction, Guns N’ Roses (1987), 18 million

In the late 1980s glam metal was getting really popular. We could hear them on the radio all the time, then in 1987. Guns N’ Roses dropped their debut album ‘Appetite of Destruction’ and shocked the entire world.

With Axl’s burning vocals and Slash’s legendary riffs, tracks like Welcome to the Jungle,” “Sweet Child O’ Mine,” and “Paradise City,” became the crowd’s favorite. The album reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200.

The group sold over 30 million copies worldwide. Although the album was released 37 years ago, many radio still play this album. It aged fine like wine.

Rumours, Fleetwood Mac (1977), 20 million

When Fleetwood Mac released their 11th album ‘Rumors’ they were a totally different-looking group. Over 40 million copies were sold worldwide.

The band went through some drastic changes while making the album, the power rock couple  Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks got separated which gave birth to popular tracks such as “Go Your Own Way” and “The Chain.”

The album, ‘Rumours’ won a Grammy, and to this day it remains one of the most influential rock albums of all time.

Cracked Rear View, Hootie & the Blowfish (1994), 21 million

Hootie & the Blowfish cleared everyone’s doubt by releasing ‘Cracked Rear View’ which became a masterpiece in no time.

Their debut album reached No. 1 on the Billboard 200. With popular tracks such as “Hold My Hand,” “Only Wanna Be with You,” and “Let Her Cry,” it’s no wonder why the album was a hit. The album will forever remain a treasure of the 90s.

‘The Wall,’ Pink Floyd (1979), 23 million

Pink Floyd has always been successful with their albums but ‘The Wall’ was a special piece for the fans. In the album, Roger Waters shared his life story where he faced struggles with abusive teachers, the death of his father, the struggle with his mother, and the result. one of the greatest rock albums of all time.

The album featured classics such as “Hey You,” “Comfortably Numb,” and “Run Like Hell.” Not to mention the overlooked masterpieces “Mother” and “Nobody Home.” Over 11.5 million copies of this double-disc set were sold.

Greatest Hits Volume I & Volume II,’ Billy Joel, (1985), 23 million

Released after Joel’s 1983’s ‘An Innocent Man,” this collection contained all of his important songs. This was a great way to introduce new fans to one of the greatest artists of all time.

The album features hits such as “She’s Always a Woman,” “Only the Good Die Young,” “My Life,” and “Uptown Girl,” and two unreleased tracks; You’re Only Human (Second Wind) and “The Night is Still Young.” Over 23 million albums were sold internationally.

The Beatles, Beatles (1968), 24 million

Yep, the Beatles are here again. This time they came up with The ‘White Album’. This was really a challenging album for the Beatles to make since many controversies about the band were floating and they were on the verge of breaking up.

The album was still a hit, and they still managed to deliver incredible tracks such as “Blackbird,” “Helter Skelter,” “Revolution 1,” “Back in the U.S.S.R.”, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da,” “Dear Prudence,” and “9.”

If we count the total sales made from the album (two discs as one) they sold over 19 million copies.

Led Zeppelin IV, Led Zeppelin (1971), 24 million

The fourth album of Led Zeppelin was untitled but many people also refer to the album as Led Zeppelin IV. This album is considered to be the collection of the group’s greatest works and their best-selling rock album of all time.

The album consisted of eight songs, and it had some classics such as,  “Black Dog”, “Rock and Roll”,  “Misty Mountain Hop”, “When the Levee Breaks”, and ‘Stairway to Heaven.” With such a classic the group sold over 37 million copies.

Back in Black, AC/DC (1980), 25 million

Back in Black was a challenging album to release for AC/DC. The death of Bon Scott had just taken place, and the band came up with the album five months later. We can feel free to state that it was a tribute album to Scott. The new singer Brian Johnson’s raw and mature voice was just perfect for the band.

With the help of their producer Mutt Lange, the band created some of the greatest rock songs such as “Hells Bells,” “Shoot to Thrill,” and rollicking “You Shook Me All Night Long”

Hotel California, Eagles (1975), 26 million

‘Hotel California’ is one of the best rock tracks out there and one of the greatest albums. The studio album was also nominated for a Grammy in ‘Album of the Year’ which was won by ‘Rumours.’

However, the Eagles managed to win the award for ‘Best Arrangement of Voices’ with the track “Kid in Town” and it also won the Grammy for ‘Record of the Year.’ Their most popular track “Hotel California” was placed at the top in several countries.

Thriller, Michael Jackson (1982), 34 million

‘Thriller’ by Michael Jackson has to be one of his greatest crafts. With tracks such as “Billie Jean,” “Beat It,” and “Thriller” he managed to sell over 70 million copies.

It’s no wonder that ‘Thriller’ was one of the greatest pop-rock records out there, it remained at No.2 in the United States as well. After the release of the album, Michael Jackson was considered a world phenomenon and an icon, which we all agree upon.

Their Greatest Hits, Eagles (1976), 38 million

It’s finally the time to announce the No.1 and who other than the Eagles? This collection became the first album to be certified platinum by the RIAA.

Regarding sales, it came as No. 1 in the United States. The record consisted of tracks like Take It Easy,” “Already Gone,” Desperado,” and “One of These Nights.” Thanks to such tracks, the album spent more than 230 weeks on the Billboard 200.

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