Undoubtedly, 2011 was an unforgettable year for Adele. If all of the Grammy Awards and records she broke weren't enough of an indication, the Recording Industry Association of America recently announced that for the first time since 2004, total U.S. music sales increased and very likely, the overwhelming success of Adele's sophomore album, 21, played a huge role.
According to MTV News, overall U.S. album sales increased by 0.2 percent in 2011, which doesn't sound like much until you consider the steady, uninterrupted decline music sales have experienced throughout the last decade. Although physical sales are still down (by 7.7 percent) this year, the decrease in sales on the physical side were balanced out by a 9.2 percent rise on the digital side.
Adele, who became the first artist to go double platinum on iTunes, undeniably had a hand in this overall increase, selling 8.8 million digital and physical copies of 21 in 2011 alone. Plus, her ubiquitous hit single "Rolling in the Deep" became the biggest-selling digital song in U.S. history by a female artist with 6.68 million copies sold.
This year's numbers appear to be promising for Adele as well, as her album, originally released on February 22, 2011, received a spike in sales following her big wins at the Grammys. The soul singer walked away with six trophies, including the coveted Album of the Year. The album sold 730,000 copies in the days following the ceremony, more than doubling its initial first week sales of 352,000.
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