Britney Spears and Madonna are “Pop Icons” no matter what they do, what they have done or what they are planning to do. Why? The simple answer is this: they have already established themselves in the public consciousness like no artists ever since I daresay ‘Elvis’. Britney Spears has the sales potential to be the Biggest Selling Artist of the 21st Century while Madonna’s unparalleled & continuing success makes her the only ‘Legend’ of this generation.
Britney Spears: ‘The Sales Behemoth’. Forget about her recent flop ‘B In The Mix’ (the album wasn’t a studio album with no promotion anyway). Regardless, this is why Britney couldn’t be touched sales wise by any other female artist in history.
1. She is the fastest-selling female artist ever. She is the only female artist to have her first 4 albums go to No.1 in the States. She is the youngest artist (24 years old) in history to already have multiple ‘Diamond’ certifications from the RIAA. In only 7 years of actively recording, she has already sold an estimated 106 million records (76 million albums & 30 million singles).
She has the Biggest Selling 1st Week Sales by a female artist with ‘Oops I Did It Again’ & to think the 1st single of this album only hit No. 9 in the Billboard Hot 100. Her subsequent studio releases all had 1st week sales of not less than 600,000 copies in the States (a feat unmatched by any other female).
2. She has an amazing rate of releasing albums. When Britney releases her next album in 2006, it will be her 5th studio album and 7th non-studio one. At only 24 years old she already has released a ‘Greatest Hits’ compilation (selling 6 million worldwide) while most of her senior counterparts like Madonna or Celine Dion had to wait until their 30’s. In short Britney still has a lot of years to release new material.
3. She has the “Most Potential”. It has been documented that Britney Spears has been the Biggest Selling Artist for the first 5 years of the 21st Century. Accordingly, she has sold more than 60 million albums during that period (more than any artist male or female). To think Britney is still young at 24 that speak volumes.
4. She is the last true “Pop Superstar” to come out since Michael Jackson & Madonna. Don’t make a mistake of mentioning Christina Aguilera, Hillary Duff, Lindsay Lohan, Jojo, Justin Timberlake, Jesse McCartney, etc. I do love some of these artists (especially Christina) but let’s be honest: none of touches the magnitude of Britney’s huge sales.
5. She has “Global Appeal”. To perfectly describe this, her “Greatest Hits” album sold only 1 million in the States but sold 5 million worldwide. Her “In The Zone” album sold only 2.9 million in the States but more than 5 million elsewhere in the globe.
Madonna: ‘The Perennial Pop Icon’. All the proof that she is the ‘Ultimate Pop Legend’ has already been discussed in this forum lately so I wouldn’t spend time posting the argument again. I would only mention that VH1 has named Madonna the ‘Perennial Pop Icon’ of all time beating the likes of Michael Jackson and Prince.
I think the 21st Century will be dominated by these two divas in two separate categories. Britney would dominate sales wise while Madonna would dominate cultural wise. Both have “Worldwide Appeal” and both are “True Artists” who have influenced the music culture.
I would just like to emphasize that the sales & chart records of any artist would eventually be surpassed by other artists in the future so what really matters in the long run is the “Cultural Influence” the artist makes. Regarding this I believe Madonna always had the ‘Ace’.