From Billboard:

After her watershed success in 2011, Adele triumphs again in 2012. She becomes the only act to be both the top artist of the year and have the No. 1 Billboard 200 album (“21”) two years in a row. In 2011, she was the first woman to notch three of Billboard’s biggest year-end honors: No. 1 on Top Artists, No. 1 on Top Billboard 200 Albums and No. 1 on Hot 100 Songs (“Rolling in the Deep”).

Previous to “21” (XL/Columbia), the last album to go back-to-back as the No. 1 Billboard 200 album was Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” in 1983 and 1984. The Epic Records set, released in late 1982, spent the next year-and-a-half lodged in the weekly Billboard 200 chart’s top 10. It spun off seven top 10 Hot 100 singles and went on to become, arguably, the world’s biggest-selling album.

Comparably, “21” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 on March 12, 2011, and never left the top 10 until the week of Sept. 8, 2012. (At press time, it had since returned to the region for two more weeks.) Among those top 10 weeks were an astonishing 24 frames at No. 1 — the most weeks at the top since Prince & the Revolution’s “Purple Rain” soundtrack ruled for the same number in 1984 and 1985.

Before “Thriller,” there were only three albums that struck gold two years in a row since Billboard started its year-end tally for the chart in 1956. The soundtrack to “West Side Story” was tops in both 1962 and 1963, while the cast album to “The Sound of Music” ruled in 1960 and 1961.

Further, Adele is the first act to be the top artist two years in a row since 2000 and 2001, when Destiny’s Child reigned. Since Billboard started compiling an overall top artist category in 1981, there have only been four times when an act claimed the top artist feat for two straight years. In addition to Adele and Destiny’s Child, Garth Brooks took home the crown in 1992 and 1993, and New Kids on the Block scored in 1989 and 1990. But the same act and album haven’t gone back-to-back as the respective No. 1 artist and Billboard 200 album of the year-until now.

Read the full article over at Billboard.

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