Beyonce wasn’t enough to save digital music sales in 2013
According to Billboard Biz, the music industry finished the year with a decrease in sales for the first time since the iTunes store opened in 2001.
“While the digital track sales decline had been expected due to weaker sales in the first three quarters, the digital album downturn comes as more of a surprise as the album bundle had started out the year with a strong first quarter,” the site reports. “Overall for the full year 2013, digital track sales fell 5.7% from 1.34 billion units to 1.26 billion units while digital album sales fell 0.1% to 117.6 million units from the previous year’s total of 117.7 million.”
But on the bright side, the number of platinum-selling albums did increase to 13 titles in 2013, compared to the 10 in 2012. A few of the top-selling bodies of work included Justin Timberlake’s 20/20 Experience, Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers LP 2, Bruno Mars’s Unorthodox Jukebox, Drake’s Nothing Was the Same, Jay Z’s Magna Carta…Holy Grail, and of course Queen’s Beyonce, which surpassed the million mark in less than a week.
But, despite a small handful of successful artists, Billboard reports album sales suffered an 8.4 percent decline and industry executives are trying to attribute the reasons why.
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BOW DOWN: 2013 Was The Year Of Beyonce
1. Whew! What a Year!
It's been a helluva year for Beyonce who started 2013 with a *bang* and in the span of the last week has made sure she ends it that way -- to the tune of of 1 million album sales for her visual album that was sold exclusively on iTunes. Most fans will agree Queen Bey reigns supreme, but even if you're not in the Beyhive you can't deny the woman OWNED 2013 on the celeb front. Take a look back over her top moments!
2. January: Beyonce Sings National Anthem Live
The now-infamous National Anthem performance at President Obama's second inauguration had many critics in a bunch over whether or not her lip singing was really necessary. Even at the start of the year, Bey can't live.
3. January: "Any Questions" Superbowl Press Conference
The Queen quickly went into #imagerecoveroverdrive by delivering a random (but surprisingly stirring) 5-second run to folks speculating if she had the chops to sing the National Anthem in the first place. The verdict? Absolutely.
4. February: Superbowl SHUT DOWN
Within the next few weeks, Bey turned the SuperBowl into a concert that made some forget we were even watching a football game. And appropriately, at the end of her electric set the lights in the stadium completely blew out. Just after the lights died her hubby Jay Z Tweeted, "Lights out!!! Any questions??" Takeover, indeed.
5. February: Destiny's Child Reunited
Beyonce's epic performances are never complete without at least one surprise. In true ride-or-die girl power, Bey shared the stage with her girls, Kelly and Michelle. Here's to hoping for more Destiny's Child run-ins in 2014.
6. February: Still Slaying Even Without A Gown
Beyonce has 17 Grammy Awards in her name as of this year, with "Love on Top," snagging her the Best Traditional R&B Performance, and no other female artist has won as many statuettes in a single night. If the 17 won was shabby to you, let's consider the 46 Grammy nominations she has under her belt.
7. February: Life Is But A Dream Debuts
It reportedly took Beyonce's team six weeks to persuade HBO to watch "Life Is But A Dream," but once they saw it, executives found it "undeniably moving and honest." While there were some critics (Jezebel called it a "theatrical infomercial"..ouch), stand appreciated the candid look to the singer's life and onscreen debut of her baby, Blue Ivy. Having an HBO special under her belt? "That's a good look."
8. February: Bey Gets Oprah's Stanship
We all knew Oprah liked Beyonce, but this interview solidified her place in the #BeyHive. This episode of "Oprah's Next Chapter" didn't reveal much about Bey's next life chapter at all, but hey, it was a cute stamp of approval for "Life Is But A Dream."
9. February: GQ Cover Slays Newsstands
If you thought she lost it after having Blue, this GQ cover proved everyone wrong. Yes, there were comparisons between this cover and Rih's December cover a year prior, but we must never forget who literally out-bodies everyone, literally.
10. March: "I Been On/Bow Down" Releases
On March 17, Bey teased the saucier, unapologetic and yes, rachet, side of her that was to come, with this Hit-Boy track. Some cluched their pearls as Bey declared "Bow down bit*ches!"
11. March: Vogue's 'Power' Issue
Vogue made quite a statement when they put Bey on their annual 'Power' issue.
12. March: Shape Magazine Cover
Bey continued to show what she was working with on a sleeker cover for Shape.
13. April: Bey's Nippy Bodysuit
Mrs. Carter is known for her glittery costumes just as much as her signature grandiose performances. But, this Emilio Pucci bodysuit, complete with glittery nipples, cause quite a stir because why would a showwoman put on such a flashy, provocative costume? Now, that just doesn't add up, does it? **sigh**
14. April: Kicks Off The Epic "The Mrs. Carter World Tour"
Entertainer Beyonce performs on stage during "The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour" at the Barclays Center on August 3, 2013 in New York, New York. Beyonce wears a royal blue hand-beaded jumpsuit by Vrettos Vrettakos, Stuart Weitzman shoes and hosiery by Capezio. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage for Parkwood Entertainment)
15. April: Pepsi Max Unveils Global Beyonce Campaign
Bey continues to verify her genius marketing skills with a contract that was estimated at nothing short of $50 million. Say what you want, but the girl understands the language of green.
16. April: "Mirrors" Pepsi Commercial (And "Grown Woman") Debuts
The epic commercial coinciding with the campaign. Who needs a 4-minute music video, when you can subliminally slip a clip of your new song in a 30-second commercial?
17. April: H&M Launches Swimsuit Campaign
Oh, you didn't know Bey models, too? The curvy superstar was the perfect candidate for the H&M summer campaign spokesmodel. There were several reports that Bey personally requested the images to not be photoshopped, but with a body that looks generally like this, we're not even sure what would be photoshopped.
18. April: H&M Commercial (and "Standing In the Sun") Debuts
Soooo, H&M bathing suits don't make me look like this? Anyway.
19. May: Anniversary Trip to Cuba
Bey and Jay aren't your typical married couple that has a small anniversary celebration with family. They travel abroad to countries we haven't seen and (allegedly) aren't allowed to visit. No, seriously. This trip to Cuba sparked many questions about the message behind their trip and if they were trying to flaunt their celebrity status.
20. May: One Glass of Wine Shuts Down All Rumors
Just when we thought Blue was getting a younger brother or sister, Bey Bey took to her Instagram to dispute any claims that she was preggo with Baby Carter #2. The cute photo was taken at a restaurant Jay and Bey went to during The Mrs. Carter World Tour stop in Berlin.
21. May: Met Gala
Queen Bey was Honorary Chairperson of the 2013 Met Ball, which paid tribute to the punk movement. Decked out in Givenchy from head to toe, we can't help but love how appropriate this fabulous fashion risk was.
22. May: Beyonce Cover British Vogue
Bey slays covers internationally. Don't forget that.
23. June: Headlines 'Chime For Change'
After announcing support for a campaign that encourages female empowerment, Bey Bey stunned the stage in the concert coinciding with the campaign.
24. August: Shatters Instagram With Short 'Do
Many say that a woman often changes her hair when she's going through a drastic change. We're not sure what drastic change Bey was going through here (being a mother, maybe?), but she surprised everyone with this unexpected crop.
25. August: Pixie Cut Turns Into A Blunt Bob At V Festival
Hey, even Bey needs to experiment every once in a while. Weeks after Beyonce debuted her pixie cut, she added some length and came out with a fierce blunt bob solidifying she can work any 'do and still rock it (and yes she still whipped it and flipped it as usual!).
26. August: Budweiser Made In America Festival Benefiting The United Way
Beyonce headlined the second Made in America festival in Philadelphia with a performance that was wildly agreed to have shut down the entire weekend. The festival was co-founded and curated by her husband Jay Z who watched her from the sidelines.
27. September: Watch The Throne! Jay & Bey Top Forbes' Richest Couple List
The power couple has long been a fixture on Forbes' annual richest celebrity list -- both individually and together-- but this year they cinched the number one spot as the highest earning stars, with a combined $95 million annually. And Mrs. Carter out-earned her boo by $11 million. Not that it's a competition between them, but we love that even though she's married she's still an Independent Woman who holds her own.
28. October: The Photobomb That Really Wasn't
News travels fast when it looks like the biggest star in the world has photobombed your photo. But, for 15-year-old Valentina, Bey was just fulfilling her request. "I have been the girl that got her selfie 'photobombed' by Beyonce," she wrote on her Tumblr. "[But], in fact, I asked her for the photo. She posed and smiled as the perfect person she is! Just thought I'd clean the air."
29. November: The Quiet Before The Storm
Still traveling with her Mrs. Carter World Tour, Bey was somewhat quiet in November, with only a few images of her dressing in random costumes and garments, this Louis Vuitton mask being one of them. Little did we know, she was planning moves to make history.
30. December: Bey Ousts Kim As Bings' Most Searched Celeb
In case you thought KimYe was coming for the throne with their non-stop media presence this year, a simple search showed and proved that at the end of the day, the world's still checking for Bey first. The songbird was named the most-searched person in 2013 on Bing, the online search engine, edging out 2012's list-topper reality television star Kim Kardashian, who came in second.
31. December: Beyoncé
In the move of all epic moves, Beyonce proved that she stay workin' even when you didn't think she was this year (hopefully, this list proved you wrong!) and surpassed a million DIGITAL copies sold of an album THAT WASN'T EVEN PROMOTED. The Queen of Marketing out-marketed herself. Game. Set. Match.
32. December: Bey Shops It Up At Walmart, Clearly Ignores Target
Bey wants to prove she's just like us (good luck, girl). She surprised shoppers at a Walmart in Massachusetts on Dec. 20, the first day of her album's store release. She reportedly gifted 720 shoppers $50 Walmart cards, and managed to pick up a copy of "Beyonce" before she left. Bey didn't issue a formal statement about Target's decision not to sell copies of the album, but clearly this was her answer.
33. December: Bey Attends Her Visual Album Screening
Queen Bey made an appearance at her visual album screening in New York and answered audience questions about the album, motherhood and her creativity. Instagram and Twitter inevitably went crazy.