LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Country-pop singer Taylor Swift thanked her fans on Wednesday for buying more than one million copies of her new album “Speak Now”, making it the biggest first week seller in five years.
“I... Can’t... Believe... This... You guys have absolutely lit up my world. Thank you,” Swift said in Twitter message. Official Nielsen SoundScan figures showed that “Speak Now” sold 1,047,000 copies in the United States during the week ended October 31.
It was the biggest sales week for an album since rapper 50 Cent’s 2005 album “The Massacre” sold 1,141,000.
The critically well-praised album — the third from the 20 year-old singer-songwriter — also notched up the second-largest sales week of any country album since 1991.
The bumper numbers, helped by a massive promotional push including TV appearances, advance digital releases of some of the new songs and free concerts by Swift, came after years of music industry gloom over declining album sales and piracy.
Swift, who won four Grammys earlier this year, has carved out a distinctive niche over the past two years for songs that address adolescent heart-break and the social perils of high-school.
Her album “Fearless” was the biggest selling record of 2009.
In “Speak Now”, she delivers a forthright commentary on several men who have broken or messed with her heart.
The album includes songs widely believed to refer to singer John Mayer, pop star Joe Jonas, rapper Kanye West, “Twilight” actor Taylor Lautner, and music industry critics who slammed her shaky vocal performance at the 2010 Grammy Awards.
Nashville music industry writer David Ross, editor of MusicRow, said Swift’s success flies in the face of conventional wisdom about the dire state of the recording industry.
“Unlike many of the top-charting female artists of today, Ms. Swift eschews tabloid behavior and asks fans to focus on her music,” Ross said on Wednesday.
“In some universal way, her life contests connect with similar moments that have brushed the fabric of others as well,” Ross added.
Reporting by Jill Serjeant, editing by Christine Kearney