Michael Jackson’s Thriller Becomes First 30-Times Multi-Platinum Album, Is Still Unbeatable

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MJ. Photo: LUKE FRAZZA

Michael Jackson's Thriller is the first album to notch 30-million Stateside sales, Billboard reports, meaning it's the first album to go platinum 30 times and it's impressive if you've never heard of it. The milestone, announced Wednesday, is a reminder that Jackson is the bestselling musical artist of all time, with more than 100-million Thriller sales worldwide and 1-billion total sales to his name, according to the Recording Industry Association of America. The album quickly began breaking records upon its 1982 release, going multi-platinum 20 times by 1984.

"I wake up from dreams and go, Wow, put this down on paper," Jackson told Rolling Stone, of the album's creative process in 1983. "The whole thing is strange. You hear the words, everything is right there in front of your face. And you say to yourself, I'm sorry, I just didn't write this. It's there already. That's why I hate to take credit for the songs I've written. I feel that somewhere, someplace, it's been done and I'm just a courier bringing it into the world. I really believe that. I love what I do. I'm happy at what I do. It's escapism."

RS also points out that Thriller has already been recognized by the Guinness World Records as the world's top-selling album of all time. The Eagles's greatest hits, however, comes in at a close second (in the States) with 29 million. (But who's counting?) You can see the RIAA's full list of top 100 certified albums here.