Of all the surprises that 2016 has sprung upon us – Donald Trump winning the US presidential elections might top that list – it seems the music business is not to be outdone. While we’ve spent a good chunk of the year bobby our heads and gyrating to the beats from Beyoncé, Drake, Adele and the likes, none of these have managed to cash in their musical successes this year.
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And what’s more, the musician to have achieved this colossal success managed to do so without a single video, iTunes release, viral video or even a worldwide tour. This dark horse of a musician (and he can only be called so in the 21st century) happens to be none other than Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart! And you thought classical music was dead!
According to a Billboard report, “Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition has shifted 1.25 million total CDs in the weeks since its Oct. 28 release, according to Universal Music Group.” The set was apparently released to celebrate the musician’s 225th birth anniversary (no matter that he was born on January 27). The compilation “is the fruit of years of scholarship, planning, and curation,” according to Universal Music Group.
Just to clarify, this feat was achieved in terms of CD sales – yes, you iTuners, people still buy those! In the iTunes universe, Drake’s Views and “One Dance” both earned the top spot as on iTunes’ best-selling album and single list, respectively. He was also reportedly named top musician on Spotify.
Each box of Mozart 225 contains 200 CDs, that’s an estimated 240 hours of music, and is sold for around $500 on various online websites. As has been reported, the 1.25 million CDs includes every individual CD in the box, so effectively, only about 6,000 people have contributed to the evergreen Mozart having achieved this feat.