Sunday, April 14, 2024

Mariah Carey: The Continuing Mystery of How a 12 Year Old Out of Print Album is Number 1 on iTunes


Yes, the mystery continues.

How in the world could Mariah Carey’s “E=MC2,” an album from 2008 that is almost out of stock completely at, be number 1 suddenly on iTunes?

iTunes, don’t forget, measures downloads, not streaming.

Sales of CD and downloads from Friday through Sunday night, according to Buzz Angle Music, came to just 677 copies. If you count in streaming– which iTunes doesn’t– total sales have been 1,200.

Of course, even that last

Compare all of this to the Number 2 album on iTunes at this moment, Fiona Apple’s “Fetch the Bolt Cutters.” It’s sold 2,200 CDs and downloads since Friday. That’s three times as much as Mariah’s album. Fiona’s total sales since Friday including streaming are 4,100.

It doesn’t take Einstein to figure out something is very wrong. I’m not saying Mariah knows what’s happening. or has sanctioned this onslaught of iTunes. But this occurred once before, when her “Glitter” album inexplicably took off after 20 years of dormancy. It could be fans just hitting buy on iTunes over and over. But why? It’s clearly a fraud.

Something is going on with iTunes, that’s for sure.

And here’s an interesting note. According to Buzz Angle, Carey fans may have tried this back on February 14th. That one week, “E=Mc2” vaulted up in digital sales, didn’t quite make it, and fell back to Earth. So this is the second time someone has tried to manipulate sales of the album. This time, it worked.

Let’s see what happens next.


PS Here’s the projected top 5 this week from “E=MC2” is not even in their top 20.


  • Youngboy Never Broke Again (NBA/Atlantic) 65-75k, 4-5k
  • DaBaby (Interscope) 50-55k, 1-2k
  • Lil Uzi Vert (Generation Now/Atlantic) 50-55k, <1k
  • The Weeknd (XO/Republic) 50-55k, 4-6k
  • Lil Baby (Quality Control/Motown/Capitol) 40-45k, <1k



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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