Taylor Swift makes records and then breaks records. The latest example is her just-released disc, Red, which is on track to sell more than one million units in its first week, which would make her the first woman in the Nielsen SoundScan era (which began in 1991) to have two albums cross the million unit mark in a single week.
According to Billboard, sources indicate that first-day sales of Red were north of 500,000, including a record-setting 160,000 units on day one shifted at Target, which has an exclusive on the album's deluxe version with six extra tracks. Swift is also getting a boost in sales from a most unusual place: copies of Red sold alongside pizzas from Papa John's that will count toward her first-week total. If the numbers hold, she will easily pass Mumford & Sons' Babel, which moved 600,000 units earlier this month to grab the year's best debut mantle from Justin Bieber, whose Believe sold 374,000 back in June.
Not only is Swift on track to shatter the Mumford high point, she may also surpass their recent first-week iTunes sales record of 390,000 (at the time, MTV News reported that Mumford sold 420,000 copies on iTunes in its first week). Though the iTunes numbers are not confirmed, Billboard reported that the digital download store is thought to have accounted for nearly half of the first-day sales of Red.
Swift sold 1.047 million units of Speak Now in November 2010, with only one album since then crossing the million mark in its first week, Lady Gaga's Born This Way, which moved 1.108 million thanks to a two-day Amazon.com 99 cent sale.
The only other acts to sell more than a milli twice are the Backstreet Boys, N'SYNC and Eminem. Only 18 albums in the SoundScan have reached that mark. Final figures for Red will be available on the evening of October 30.