New research by the team behind the popular music annual "The Book of British Hit Singles & Albums" has revealed that QUEEN has overtaken THE BEATLES as official UK album chart champions, having spent more weeks on chart than the fab four.
According to British Hit Singles & Albums' unique database of official U.K. chart statistics, QUEEN has spent an incredible 1,322 weeks on the U.K. albums chart (29 weeks more than THE BEATLES). With sales figures notoriously unreliable in the '50s, '60s and '70s, the "weeks on chart" figure represents the fairest, most accurate method of ranking acts, according to David Roberts, editor of the book published by Guinness World Records Ltd.
Thirty years since their first UK #1 album "A Night at the Opera", QUEEN has overtaken THE BEATLES in this Top 10 for the first time.
Top 10 Most Successful Acts of All Time on the U.K. Albums Chart:
01. QUEEN (1,322 weeks)
02. THE BEATLES (1,293 weeks)
03. ELVIS PRESLEY (1,280 weeks)
04. U2 (1,150 weeks)
05. DIRE STRAITS (1,136 weeks)
06. SIMON AND GARFUNKEL (1,114 weeks)
07. MADONNA (1,032 weeks)
08. DAVID BOWIE (1,005 weeks)
09. ELTON JOHN (989 weeks)
10. MICHAEL JACKSON (966 weeks)
Roberts commented: "Given that QUEEN's chart career has been much shorter than those of THE BEATLES and ELVIS, this is an incredible achievement. They've long been written about with reverence in the pages of British Hit Singles and Albums and this just serves to cement their legendary status."
And if any proof of QUEEN's continued status as one of the world's greatest live bands were needed, the band wind up their current 32-date European tour with FREE/BAD COMPANY singer and musician Paul Rodgers this week, performing in London's Hyde Park Friday, July 15.
The date, which sees the band joined for the concert by RAZORLIGHT, PETER KAY and special guests Justin and Dan Hawkins of THE DARKNESS, marks QUEEN's return to the site of one of the most historic of their earlier concerts. Performing a free concert in Hyde Park almost 29 years ago (September 18, 1976), QUEEN attracted a record audience of more than 150,000 to the park.
QUEEN holds a number of records officially recognized by Guinness World Records. The band are lauded for having the biggest selling Greatest Hits album in the U.K. with "Greatest Hits 1" (now over four million) and QUEEN is also the only act to top the chart with the same single twice — "Bohemian Rhapsody" — selling a million copies both times. The single, which celebrates its 30th anniversary later this year, was also voted the favorite single of all time in a poll conducted by readers of "British Hit Singles & Albums". "Bohemian Rhapsody" is also the biggest selling non-charity single of all time.