• Two exciting new Carpenters releases are now available. The new book Carpenters: The Musical Legacy can be ordered here. A big thanks to the authors and Richard Carpenter for their tremendous effort in compiling this book! Also, the new solo piano album Richard Carpenter's Piano Songbook is available for ordering here.

Carpenters Gold/Platinum singles

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Jeff

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Thread Starter
Hi Gang,

I'm wondering which singles are gold and platinum certified. I've heard that internationally "Please Mr. Postman" takes the cake...however, I'm also looking for general information,sales,chart positions etc. Also, for anyone in the know, How did Karen's "solo" work sell?

All the Best,

Jeff
 

Rick

Member
This is a list of U.S certified gold singles

1970 Close To You
1970 We've Only Just Begun
1971 For All We Know
1971 Rainy Days And Mondays
1971 Superstar
1972 Hurting Each Other
1973 Sing
1973 Yesterday Once More
1973 Top Of the World
1975 Please Mr. Postman

Japan
1972 Superstar (gold)
1974 Jambalaya (gold)
1974 I Won't Last A Day Without You (gold)
1974 Top Of The World (gold)
1974 Yesterday Once More (gold)
1976 Only Yesterday (gold)
1976 Please Mr. Postman (gold)

U.K.
1973 Yesterday Once More (gold)
1973 Top Of The World (gold)

I'm sure there must be more certifications in other parts of the world, though this is what I'm aware of from the three areas they are most popular.
 

Jeff

Well-Known Member
Thread Starter
Haven't any of the singles gone platinum?Certainly morethan 500,000 people bought Clos2u...

Jeff
 

Rick

Member
Back in that day (1970) to achieve a gold single you had to sell a million copies. In 1989 they switched it over to 500,000. The platinum award wasn't around until 1976, at that point to receive platinum you had to sell 2 million, in 1989 they changed that to 1 million.
My guestimate- and this is purely a guess but it seems like Close To You may have sold around 2.5 million. I think I remember hearing that somewhere.
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
I'd heard they adjusted the qualification level downward due to declining overall sales of 45RPM singles in general. Harry may know--are 'hit singles' now calculated mainly by airplay on radio and MTV/VH1/etc.?

45RPM singles, for the most part, are gone. And they wonder why record sales suck?

-= N =-
 

Rick

Member
Isn't that something a #1 song doesn't even have to sell 1 copy anymore. It's all about airplay, and we know what airplay is all about these days. Radio airplay isn't really about what the public wants- it's more about what the conglomerate record companies want us to want.
A #1 song nowadays isn't really a true #1 anymore. That's really a sad thing!
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Staff member
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Correct. These days (starting sometime in the '90s) the calculations of what songs are doing on the "Singles" charts aren't based on sales of the singles themselves. They can't be, since here in the US, the record companies don't release singles like they used to with 45s. It's now done with a complicated formula of, I believe, requests, airplay and album sales.

I know for a fact that last year there was no single released to the public containing the song "Breathless" by The Corrs. Yet the 'single' managed to show on the Adult Contemporary charts in Billboard. If you look through their printed Hot 100 chart, you'll see songs that list the catalog number of their single, if there is one, as well as songs that say something like "Album selection".

I believe that more promo singles are sent to radio stations than are pressed for the public.

Harry
...missing the days of 45s and their mysterious b-sides, online...
 

Mike Blakesley

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I miss 45s too. We used to order at least 2 or 3 copies of almost everything that came onto the chart. One of the highlights of my week was trying out the new songs. Quite often, the B-side would be a better song than the A-side!
 

PJ

Member
Rick1229 said:
This is a list of U.S certified gold singles

1970 Close To You
1970 We've Only Just Begun
1971 For All We Know
1971 Rainy Days And Mondays
1971 Superstar
1972 Hurting Each Other
1973 Sing
1973 Yesterday Once More
1973 Top Of the World
1975 Please Mr. Postman

Japan
1972 Superstar (gold)
1974 Jambalaya (gold)
1974 I Won't Last A Day Without You (gold)
1974 Top Of The World (gold)
1974 Yesterday Once More (gold)
1976 Only Yesterday (gold)
1976 Please Mr. Postman (gold)

U.K.
1973 Yesterday Once More (gold)
1973 Top Of The World (gold)

I'm sure there must be more certifications in other parts of the world, though this is what I'm aware of from the three areas they are most popular.

I am sure many other Singles are due to be certified , Only Yesterday , Goodbye to Love , I Won't Last etc are at least Gold Singles
in USA and at least 25 Singles Worldwide have sold over a Million...... :D

Probably due to Singles sales being so low (UK Number 1 sold only a weekly 67.000 recently , in the 1970's / 1980's that would have resulted in a Top 20 position ! ) and Companies failing to update sales awards , all these lists are well out of date :confused:

Most USA Gold should be Platinum , understand CTY has sold in excess of 3 Million in USA alone and more Worldwide. Although Yesterday Once More , Top Of The World and Postman have been the largest sellers overall :)

Peter....wishing more Carpenters Singles were issued and promoted to new music generation......
 

Rick

Member
I imagine by now the Carpenters must have more than 2 gold singles in Japan. My reference for worldwide certifications goes only up until 1979.

At 3 million copies sold "Close To You" was definitely platinum. The RIAA should certify all those songs pre 1976 with the platinum award. I'm sure there must be several Elton John, Beatles and Elvis songs which would qualify here. Although in looking over references 26 Elvis and 5 Elton John pre 76 songs have been certified platinum. None of the Beatles or Carpenters are. I wonder why that is so?
 

mr J.

Well-Known Member
JEFF, Karen's SOLO album sold less than 200,000 copies-making that her worst selling album ever. PASSAGE,her 2nd worst seller,sold approximately 400,000. MADE IN AMERICA sold approximately 500,000.
 

Geographer

Well-Known Member
Does anyone know the units sold on Richard's solo work? Time? "Something in Your Eyes?" Pianist, Arranger, Composer, Conductor? Just curious.
 

PJ

Member
Overall Richard sales are average , probably around 500,000 for each Album.

Sales have been good in Japan / Asia mainly due to promotion by A&M /Polygram and Richard's personal visits / Concerts :)

However other Markets have been patchy due to poor support by local Companies and Richard's lack of active promotion ..... :sad:

I recall Richard in 1998 bemoaning the lack of success for PACC Album , certainly outside Japan / Asia Polygram released this set haphazardly and did little to follow up Carpenters large selling Albums.
However Richard did the minimum of promotion and withdrew from a proposed World Concert Tour in 1998 , when 5th child was expected....

Perhaps this explains Richard's postponement of planned 2002 Christmas Album , aside from Universal issues , Richard was unwilling to promote this Album with TV / Radio / Personal visits and did not want to undertake any Christmas Concerts ..... no activity will lead to little success.......

In one sense Carpenters continuing success means Richard does not have to push himself or his career too far , so any Solo projects are more personal statements rather than commerical successes ..... :confused:

Richard could be more successful with both Solo and Production projects ......but needs both Record Company support and more determination ....... :rolleyes:

Peter....waiting for next Solo Projects......
 

Rudy

¡Que siga la fiesta!
Staff member
Site Admin
One problem with touring, too, is expense: if Richard wanted to put on a full-blown production with orchestra and take it on tour, and it didn't sell enough tickets, it would be financial suicide. That's the reason many of the jazz big bands quit touring--there's no money in it. (Only someone like Brian Setzer or Harry Connick Jr. can take a big band on the road these days--mainly because they sell a lot of albums.) It's possible to arrange for a "pick-up" orchestra for every town you perform in, but quality can vary.

Tony Banks of Genesis was also recording an orchestral work...not even to tour with it. And expense was also an issue there as well. When they were together in Genesis, they owned their own studio and could spend countless hours jamming, tweaking, rewriting, etc., and it wouldn't cost them anything other than their time. When working with an orchestra, you have a roomful of union musicians working on the time clock--rewriting and making fixes isn't really an option because you're so dependent on others.

That's not to say that seeing Richard Carpenter bring some kind of musical event would be unwelcomed--far from it! I'd go out of my way to see it if he brought something to our area. Good music will always have an audience.

-= N =-
 
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