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Groban's First Noel, Eagles' 'Long Road' Drive 2007Album Brass

Medley of Country, Rap, Rock and Pop Artists Send-Off the Year with Multi-Platinum Sales

WASHINGTON – Twas the season to remember for Josh Groban as his Christmas album, Noel, took the top spot as the highest certified album of 2007, according to Recording Industry Association of America’s year-end round up of Gold & Platinum program certifications. The yuletide record from label Reprise Records was released in October and sold more than 4 million albums by the end of the holiday shopping season.

Following closely was veteran band The Eagles with their acclaimed album Long Road Out of Eden. Released at Halloween, the album cruised through November with Gold, Platinum and 3 times multi-Platinum certifications. Long Road out of Eden marks The Eagles’ 11th multi-Platinum album. With total album sales of more than 98 million, The Eagles rank 5th on the list of highest-selling artists in the history of RIAA’s Gold & Platinum program.

Screaming girls rejoice! Pop sensation Miley Cyrus made her mark in 2007 with her popular Disney Channel series and multifunctional soundtrack Hannah Montana 2: Meet Miley Cyrus. The Walt Disney Records album was certified Gold, Platinum and 2 times multi-Platinum this year, helping make Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Tour one of the hottest concert tickets of 2007.

In addition to the numerous music awards she received in 2007, Oklahoma-born country artist Carrie Underwood’s sophomore album Carnival Ride on Arista Records rode to double Platinum status this year, having sold more than 2 million copies. Her 2005 debut, Some Hearts, is currently certified 6 times Platinum. Some ride!

Continuing his successful trend, Kanye West’s album Graduation from Def Jam Records was certified Gold, Platinum and double Platinum in October. All three of Kanye’s school-themed studio releases have reached multi-Platinum status: 2004’s The College Dropout was certified double Platinum and 2005’s Late Registration was certified triple Platinum.

2007 was also a good year for Linkin Park as the band’s Warner Bros. release Minutes to Midnight sold steadily throughout the year – reaching double Platinum status in November – and earned a top spot in the list of highest selling albums of 2007. The band, whose name pays homage to Santa Monica’s Lincoln Park, has sold more than 18 million albums to date.

Once the #1 unsigned artist on MySpace, singer/songwriter Colbie Caillat will no doubt remember the year 2007. Her debut album Coco off of Universal Motown Records provided the California native with her first Gold and Platinum certification awards. Colbie additionally received her first Gold and Platinum digital single awards for the widely acclaimed and ubiquitous track ‘Bubbly.’

Bonus Jonas! New Jersey siblings Kevin, Joe and Nick – aka the Jonas Brothers – brought home their first Gold and Platinum certifications for their self-titled debut album on Hollywood Records. The group joined touring partner Miley Cyrus and other artists to help ring in the New Year on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin Eve TV special and undoubtedly have big plans for 2008.

With her unique sound and beehive hairdo, U.K.-born recording artist Amy Winehouse took the United States by storm with her critically acclaimed album Back to Black off of Universal Records. In addition to receiving her first Gold and Platinum certifications, the album was nominated for six Grammys, including Album of the Year and Best Pop Album.

Also seeing Gold for the first time include artists Lily Allen with her album Alright, Still (Capitol Records), Lloyd with Street Love (The Inc), Paramore with Riot! (Fueled by Ramen), The Shins with Wincing the Night Away (Sub Pop) and Elliot Yamin with Elliot Yamin (Hickory Records). Yamin and Winehouse also brought home their first Gold digital single awards for ‘Wait for You’ and ‘Rehab,’ respectively.

Rocker Bon Jovi’s Lost Highway (Mercury Nashville), rapper Jay-Z’s American Gangster (Roc-A-Fella Records), and country crooner Tim McGraw’s Let It Go (Curb Records) all were awarded their 10th Platinum album awards this year. .

Grammy-nominated rock icon Bruce Springsteen also tore up the 2007 charts with his album Magic off of Columbia Records, selling more than a million copies and awarding him with Gold and Platinum certifications. This new Platinum award gives The Boss his 17th Platinum album. With more than 63 albums sold, Springsteen is currently the 14th highest selling artist in Gold and Platinum history.

Fancy still hasn’t let us down. Reba McEntire’s 2007 release of Reba Duets sold more than a million copies this year, certifying it Gold and Platinum and awarding the country legend with her 19th Platinum and 25th Gold certification. The MCA Nashville album features duets with a mix of artists including Kelly Clarkson, Justin Timberlake, Vince Gill, Carole King, Rascal Flatts and Don Henley. McEntire has sold a total of 40 million albums to date, earning her one of the top selling female country artist titles to date.

The most popular digital single of 2007 goes to pop/R&B artist Rihanna for her hit single ‘Umbrella’ off her Island Def Jam Gold and Platinum certified release Good Girl Gone Bad. ‘Umbrella’ sold more than 2 million downloads. To add more frosting, Rihanna also received Gold and Platinum master Ringtone certifications for ‘Umbrella’ and ‘Unfaithful.’

Also receiving their first Gold records for digital singles include Shop Boyz for ‘Party Like a Rockstar’(Universal), T-Pain for ‘Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin’)’(Jive), and Sean Kingston for ‘Me Love’ and ‘Beautiful Girls’(Epic). Shop Boyz, T-Pain and Sean Kingston all received additional Platinum awards for the success of each of their digital singles.

Fans of rap music were also big fans of ringtones in 2007 as Shop Boyz’ ‘Party like a Rock Star,’ Soulja Boy’s ‘Crank That (Soulja Boy)’(Interscope), and T-Pain’s ‘Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin’)’ all tied for first place for highest selling ringtone of the year. Each sold more than 3 million ringtones, certifying them 3 times multi-Platinum.

Additional Gold certifications for ringtones were awarded to several first-timers, including Baby Bash for ‘Cyclone,’ Bone Thugs ‘n Harmony for ‘I Tried’ (additional Platinum certification), Fabolous for ‘Make it Better’ (additional Platinum certification), Fantasia for ‘When I See You,’ Hurricane Chris for ‘A Bay Bay’ (additional Platinum and multi-Platinum certification), Sean Kingston for ‘Beautiful Girls’ (additional Platinum and multi-Platinum certification), Avril Lavigne for ‘Girlfriend’ (additional Platinum certification) and Lil Mama for ‘Lip Gloss.’

DECEMBER HIGHLIGHTS

Nine-time Grammy Award winner Alicia Keys continues to stun audiences worldwide with her musical talent as her third studio album, As I Am off of J Records, sold more than 2 million copies and was certified Gold, Platinum and double Platinum in just one month. This talented R&B artist – who once had a small role on The Cosby Show – has sold more than 13 million albums since springing on the scene in 2001 with her debut album Songs in A Minor.

It was her December to remember as RCA recording artist Kelly Clarkson’s third album My December was certified Gold and Platinum during the holiday month. Clarkson also received an additional Gold certification for her digital single ‘Never Again.’

Robert Ritchie – aka Kid Rock – got down with the Man Upstairs as his album off of Atlantic Records, Rock N Roll Jesus, sold more than 500,000 copies and was certified Gold.

Aptly-named country sensation Taylor Swift breezed on to the scene in 2006 and has brought home her first multi-Platinum award for her self-titled debut album Taylor Swift off Big Machine Records. In addition to being the Horizon Award winner at this year’s CMA Awards, the 18-year old Swift has received a Grammy nomination for Best New Artist.

Country artist Kenny Chesney rocked December with Platinum album certifications for his 1996 release Me and You and his latest 2007 release Just who I am: Poets & Pirates.

British recording artist James Blunt’s 2007 release All the Lost Souls off Atlantic Records gave the Sandhurst graduate his second Gold record. His 2004 debut, Back to Bedlam, is currently certified 2 times Platinum.

Rap/R&B sensation Chris Brown was awarded a Gold and Platinum record for his album Exclusive off Jive/Zomba Records this month. The 18-year old Virginia native also received a

Platinum ringtone certification for “Yo (Excuse Me Miss)” from his double Platinum selling self-titled debut album.

Senegalese-American hip hop artist Akon raked in the brass this month with numerous certifications: hit singles ‘Smack That,’ ‘I Wanna Love You’ and ‘Don’t Matter’ were certified as Gold and Platinum digital singles, with ‘Smack That’ also reaching multi-Platinum status. Additionally, ‘Don’t Matter’ sold more than 3 million ringtones, certifying it 3 times Platinum, and ‘Lonely’ was awarded with a Platinum ringtone certification.

Rock group Finger Eleven received their first Gold digital single certification for hit single ‘Paralyzer’ off of Wind-Up Records this month.

The RIAA awarded a total of 276 albums, 106 digital single and 165 Master Ringtones in 2007. All certifications are calculated by Gelfand, Rennert & Feldman. Complete lists of all album, single, mastertone and video awards can also be accessed at www.riaa.com.

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The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is the trade organization that supports and promotes the creative and financial vitality of the major music companies. Its members comprise the most vibrant record industry in the world. RIAA® members create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85% of all legitimate recorded music produced and sold in the United States.

In support of this mission, the RIAA works to protect the intellectual property and First Amendment rights of artists and music labels; conduct consumer, industry and technical research; and monitor and review state and federal laws, regulations and policies. The RIAA® also certifies Gold®, Platinum®, Multi-Platinum™ and Diamond sales awards as well as Los Premios De Oro y Platino™, an award celebrating Latin music sales.

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