HomeAll ListsStaff Profiles

20 Best Selling Music Singles Since 1990

shakira.jpg

The world’s best selling single in history is Elton John’s 1997 release, Candle
in the Wind.  Rounding out the Top 5 are Bing Crosby’s White Christmas
and Silent Night, Bill Haley & His Comets Rock Around the Clock, and
Teixeirinha’s Coração de Luto.  I have compiled a list of the world’s best
selling singles since the year 1990.

20. Christina Aguilera - Genie in a Bottle

7 Million Copies (1999)

Genie in a Bottle is the first hit single and signature song from Christina
Aguilera's debut self-titled album.  The track established Aguilera's place as
a pop phenomenon, going platinum within a few months of release.  It is one
of Aguilera's most successful singles worldwide.  Genie in a Bottle reached
the Top 5 in Canada, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Mexico, Argentina,
and the UK. 

19. Ashanti - Foolish

7.2 Million Copies (2002)

Foolish is a song by American R&B singer Ashanti.  It was released on her
debut album and features elements from One More Chance (remix) by The
Notorious B.I.G.  The single spent ten weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot
100.  It became Ashanti's second #1 and third top ten hit.  Foolish reached
the top ten in the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand
. 

18. Utada Hikaru - Flavor of Life

7.2 Million Copies (2007)

Flavor of Life is Hikaru Utada's 18th Japanese single (25th single overall).  It
was released on February 28, 2007.  Flavor of Life garnered extreme
success.  This single sold over 200,000 copies in its first week.  It is the first
single to sell over five and a half million downloads total, the first single to
top RIAJ downloads for three consecutive months, and the first song to be
certified platinum for PC downloads in Japan.  Flavor Of Life has become
the highest selling Japanese download single of all time, with over 5,580,000
downloads by April 2007.

17. Pink - So What

7.8 Million Records (2008)

So What is a song written and performed by American pop rock singer Pink.
It was released as the first single from Pink's fifth studio album Funhouse.
In September, 2008, the song became Pink's first solo number-one hit in
her native USA.  It has also reached #1 in twenty-five other countries.  It has
become Pink's biggest UK single to date.

16. Flo Rida - Low

8 Million Copies (2007)

Low is the debut single by American rapper Flo Rida, featured on his debut
album Mail On Sunday and also released on the soundtrack to the 2008 film
Step Up 2: The Streets.  The song features T-Pain and was co-written with
T-Pain.  The single was a hit worldwide and the longest running number one
single of 2008.  With five million paid digital downloads, it was certified 5x
Platinum by the RIAA, and was the most downloaded single of 2000s
decade, measured by paid digital downloads.

15. Katy Perry - I Kissed a Girl

8 Million Copies (2008)

I Kissed a Girl is a song by pop singer Katy Perry, written by Perry, Dr Luke,
Max Martin and Cathy Dennis.  It was produced by Dr. Luke for Perry's 2008
album One of the Boys.  Perry says the song is "about the magical beauty
of a woman.”  The song has become a major worldwide hit, and along with
the United States, it has topped the charts in more than 30 countries,
including Australia, Canada, Ireland, and the United Kingdom

14. Bryan Adams - (Everything I Do) I Do It for You

8 Million Copies (1991)

(Everything I Do) I Do It for You is a hugely-successful song co-written and
performed by Bryan Adams.  It was featured on his 1991 album Waking up
the Neighbours
and on the soundtrack for the film Robin Hood: Prince of
Thieves
.  The single spent seven weeks at #1 in the United States, sixteen
consecutive weeks at #1 on the UK Singles Chart (the longest in British chart
history), and nine weeks atop the RPM singles chart in Canada.  The song
ranked at #16 on Billboard's All Time Top 100. 

13. Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit

8 Million Copies (1991)

Smells Like Teen Spirit is a song by the American rock band Nirvana.  It is
the opening track and lead single from the band's second album Nevermind
(1991).  The song was written by Kurt Cobain, Krist Novoselic, and Dave
Grohl.  It uses a verse-chorus form where the main four-chord riff is used
during the intro and chorus to create an alternating loud and quiet dynamic.
Smells Like Teen Spirit was Nirvana's first and biggest hit.  It reached
number six on the Billboard Hot 100 and placed high on music industry
charts all around the world.  
 

12. Ricky Martin - Livin' La Vida Loca

8 Million Copies (1999)

Livin' la Vida Loca is a song by Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin.  It was
released in 1999 on Martin's self-titled debut English album.  The song
topped the charts during 1999. It received various Grammy nominations and
helped Ricky Martin obtain enormous worldwide success.  The song is
generally seen as the single that began the Latin pop explosion of 1999,
making it easier to crossover into the English market.  Livin' la Vida Loca is
especially monumental because it was the first No. 1 song to be recorded,
edited, and mixed totally on a DAW (digital audio workstation).  It is seen by
audio-production enthusiasts everywhere as the song that marked the shift
from analog recording to digital recording.

11. Thelma Aoyama - Soba ni Iru ne

8.2 Million Copies (2009)

Soba ni Iru ne ,is Thelma Aoyama's second official single.  It was released
on January 23, 2008, and features SoulJa.  The single reached the #1
position on Japan's Oricon charts in its second week and sold over 450,000
compact discs.  In addition, it recorded over 7 million downloads by July
2008.  Soba ni Iru ne was also the best-selling single on the iTunes Store
2008 yearly charts in Japan.

10. Madonna - Hung Up

9 Million Copies (2005)

Hung Up is a song written by singer-songwriter Madonna.  It was released on
her 10th studio album, Confessions on a Dance Floor.  The single was
initially used in a number of television advertisements and serials.  Hung Up
contains a sample of the pop group ABBA's hit single Gimme! Gimme!
Gimme! (A Man After Midnight) for which Madonna personally sought
permission to use from ABBA songwriters Benny Andersson and Björn
Ulvaeus.  The song became a worldwide commercial success, peaking atop
the charts of more than 45 countries.  In the United States it became
Madonna's 36th top 10 hit, tying her with Elvis Presley
.

9. Shakira - Whenever, Wherever

9 Million Copies (2001)

Whenever, Wherever is a Latin pop song written by Colombian singer
songwriter Shakira.  It was released on her first English album, Laundry
Service
(2001).  Whenever, Wherever is the second most successful song
in Shakira’s career, behind only Hips Don't Lie (2006).  The single reached
#1 in 29 separate countries and became the biggest hit of 2002 worldwide.
In the Netherlands the song kept the #1 position for nine weeks.  It reached
number two in the United Kingdom, number four in Canada, and number six
in the U.S.

8. Lil Wayne - Lollipop

9.1 Million Copies (2008)

Lollipop is the first single from Lil Wayne's sixth studio album, Tha Carter III.
The track features the late R&B artist Static Major and was produced by
Deezle and Jim Jonsin.  Static Major died two weeks before the release of
the song.  Lollipop was #5 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Best Songs of
2008 and is the single most downloaded ringtone of the 2000s.  The single
spent 5 non-consecutive weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart.  It reached
the #1 spot in the U.S. and Croatia, #10 in Canada, #32 in Australia, #22 in
Germany, #28 in Ireland, and peaked at #26 in the UK. 

7. Cher - Believe

10 Million Copies (1998)

Believe is a hit song which served as the lead single on Cher's twenty-third
studio album Believe.  It is noted for its up-front use of Auto-Tune on Cher’s
vocals.  The song won a Grammy Award and was an international multi-
platinum success.  It reached the #1 spot in the U.S. Australia, France,
Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and many other areas of the world.

6. Shakira featuring Wyclef Jean - Hips Don't Lie

10 Million Copies (2006)

Hips Don't Lie is a Latin pop song based in a salsa and Cumbia mix and
fused with a reggae beat.  It was recorded by Colombian singer Shakira and
Haitian rapper Wyclef Jean.  The song is a remake of Jean's 2004 song
Dance Like This.  It was released as the 2nd single from Shakira's second
English album Oral Fixation Vol. 2 in 2006.  Hips Don't Lie became a global
success, topping the charts in at least 55 countries.  It became Shakira's first
(and to date, only) number-one single in the U.S.  The song became one of
the world's best-selling singles of all time and one of the hottest songs of
summer 2006.

5. Celine Dion  - My Heart Will Go On

10 Million Copies Sold (1997)

My Heart Will Go On is the theme song of the 1997 blockbuster film Titanic.
The music was composed by James Horner and the lyrics were written by
Will Jennings.  The song was recorded by Céline Dion and was originally
released in 1997 on Dion's album Let's Talk about Love.  The release
reached #1 all over the world, including the United States, United Kingdom
and Australia.  It became one of the best-selling singles of all time, and was
the world's best selling single of 1998.

4. Los del Río - Macarena

11 Million Copies (1995)

Macarena is a Spanish song by Los del Río.  It is about a woman of the
same name.  The single was popular between 1995 and 1996.  Macarena
became the second longest running #1 and best selling debut single of all
time in the U.S.  It was ranked the #1 Greatest One-Hit Wonder of all Time
by VH1 in 2002.  It uses a type of clave.  Macarena ranks at #5 on
Billboard's All Time Top 100 and #1 on Billboard's All Time Latin Songs.

3. Sarah Brightman - Time to Say Goodbye

11 Million Copies (1997)

Con te partirò (literally meaning "With you I will leave") is an Italian Classical
Crossover song written by Francesco Sartori and Lucio Quarantotto.  It was
first performed by Andrea Bocelli at the 1995 San Remo Festival and was
released on his album the same year.  Con te partirò is considered Bocelli's
signature song.  The song achieved widespread success with a second
version sung partly in English, pairing Bocelli with soprano Sarah Brightman.
The cover song was titled Time to Say Goodbye.  It is Bocelli's first #1 hit
under both versions.

2. Whitney Houston - I Will Always Love You

12 Million Copies (1992)

I Will Always Love You is a song written by American singer-songwriter Dolly
Parton in 1973.  The single was covered by Whitney Houston in 1992.
Whitney’s version became one of the best-selling singles of all time.
Whitney Houston recorded the song for the soundtrack to The Bodyguard,
her film debut.  The single spent fourteen weeks at the top of the U.S.
Billboard Hot 100, which at the time was a record.  It reached the top spot in
Australia, Canada, Germany, Japan, Ireland, the UK, Sweden, and many
other areas of the world. 

1. Elton John - Candle in the Wind

37 Million Copies (1997)

Candle in the Wind 1997 is a song by Elton John that was released as a
tribute single to Diana, Princess of Wales.  It has sold over 37 million copies
worldwide and is the best-selling single of all time.  On release in September
1997, the song peaked at #1 in the UK, becoming Elton John's fourth
number one single.  It is also the first song in history to reach the top of the
charts in each of the four major countries in the music industry, United
States, Japan, United Kingdom, and Germany.

The 1997 version of Candle in the Wind is based on the 1973 version of the
same song released by Elton John.  The lyrics of the original version were
written by Bernie Taupin and the song was a tribute to Marilyn Monroe. 

Follow The List Blog - Top 10 on Twitter

Name:
Email:
Comments:
 

Anita - January 10, 2010
Love almost all of these! Great to have the videos!!!

Tamira - April 14, 2010
Ashanti is my favorite!!

Copyright The List Blog - Top 10, All Rights Reserved, Posted January 8, 2010