This past weekend, as those who knew him best laid Prince’s remains to rest in a private ceremony at Paisley Park and musicians in every genre paid tribute to the Purple One on stage, fans around the world were also paying their respects by blasting his music out of their car windows, hosting spontaneous dance parties, and making babies to some of his sexier numbers, which is to say all of them. (It’s what he would have wanted.)
A lot of fans, in fact, as Entertainment Weekly reports that Prince album sales have spiked in the wake of his death. His greatest-hits collection The Very Best Of Prince is currently No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 200 charts, which Billboard itself notes marks Prince’s fifth No. 1 Billboard hit album, and the first greatest-hits album to reach No. 1 since 2007. Following it is Purple Rain at No. 2 and The Hits/The B-Sides at No. 6, giving Prince three albums in the Top 10 the weeks after his death. (This is also the first time the same artist has occupied both the No. 1 and No. 2 spots since October 2004, when Nelly accomplished the same thing with Suit and Sweat.) The numbers were based on Billboard’s new multi-metric data, which includes digital downloads and “streaming equivalent albums” as well as physical record sales.
In life, Prince was famous for swiftly cracking down on unauthorized uploads of his music to YouTube and the like, which may have helped boost actual album sales among fans who really needed to hear “Let’s Go Crazy” right now. As far as streaming goes, last summer Prince licensed streaming rights to his back catalog exclusively to Tidal. (Paired with Tidal’s exclusive stream of Beyonce’s Lemonade, it was presumably a good weekend for the service.) Vinyl collectors who already owned his back catalog, as always, remained self-satisfied.