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UPDATE: Something very, VERY weird has been happening with Mariah Carey’s 2001 album Glitter

When Glitter, the movie starring Mariah Carey was released in 2001, it was almost immediately branded as a major bomb. Its accompanying soundtrack didn’t fair well, either. In fact, Glitter has become a meme used to describe something awful.

That was 17 years ago. So why has the Glitter soundtrack suddenly and, let’s face it, randomly and improbably, hit the top of the iTunes charts in America?

It’s not like it’s selling many copies–4,737 units last week, compared to SoundScan’s number one album, Experiment by Kane Brown, which moved 106.775 copies–so something else must be afoot. But what?

Mariah says she has no explanation.

So it’s this #JusticeforGlitter campaign? Doubtful. Once again, we come back to the issue of sales stats: the number just don’t show massive numbers of people buying this 17-year-old album. What could it be?

It could be that iTunes has been gamed again, just like what happened a week or so with Chinese pop star Kris Wu when ten of his songs suddenly appeared on the iTunes singles chart. But how does this gaming work? Apple’s not commenting and neither Billboard nor Neilsen have any explanation. Yet.

Meanwhile, Carey fans–The Lambify–think its magic and that Mariah is finally getting her due from the universe.  Okay. Whatever.

UPDATE: The new sales data (issued today, November 19) doesn’t shed much light on the matter.

  • Glitter was the 15th-highest-selling digital album in the US last month, seeing 4,575 paid downloads. Compare that to the first-place Imagine Dragons’ Origins, which had 40,240 downloads.
  • It’s nowhere to be found on the SoundScan Top 200.

What the hell is going on?




Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38427 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

One thought on “UPDATE: Something very, VERY weird has been happening with Mariah Carey’s 2001 album Glitter

  • I remember seeing part of this on a plane about a year or so later, I heard it was set to start previews in New York…on September 11th!!…and parts of it were filmed around the twin towers! Given that, even a good movie was doomed, and this was not a good movie…


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