Billboard announces top-selling classical artists of the year

Billboard announces top-selling classical artists of the year


norman lebrecht

December 19, 2014

The first two are no surprise – the Benedicties of Mary and Andrea Bocelli.

The third is a bombshell.




The Guarnerius-playing Anne-Akiko Meyers, with Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and American Masters, outsold every genuine classical artist in America in the year 2014.


four seasons


  • StringPlayer says:

    Not so surprising: One can do anything with money, and she comes from a wealthy family.

  • Sarah S says:

    O please. Anne Akiko Meyer’s rich husband bought every copy. Plus all her instruments.

  • Halldor says:

    What sort of sales figures are behind these rankings?

  • John Jones says:

    Sarah S sounds seriously jealous to me. She is probably some 2nd rate vioilin hack who aspires to have the successful career that Anne has. Her comments are pure BS! The sales figures don’t lie and neither do the thousands of people who bought her CD’s with real names and real credit cards. Come on Sarah, get a life! I’ve listened to all of the violinists out there, and Anne is simply phenomenal. If anyone doubts that, just listen.

    • Max Grimm says:

      I don’t really care how many of her CDs were sold, how she ranks in whatever charts or if her husband bought 4, 40 or 40000 of her recordings. I heard Mrs. Meyers play a few years ago and absolutely did not regret having bought tickets and would readily do so again.
      And if her “rich husband” bought her instruments, so what (I would most certainly not object if I were married to a rich wife who bought me Strads or Guarneris).

    • Max Grimm says:

      Apologies Mr. Jones. My comment was intended to be a reply to Sarah S’s post.

  • JB says:

    Anne Akiko Myers’ cd company, Entertainment One are notorious also for not paying their advertising bills. They steal free promotion.

  • My Old Lady says:

    Am I the only person questioning the integrity of Billboard’s calculations? I stopped believing them years ago, when Billboard reported that the Garrick Ohlsson-Busoni Piano Concerto recording was the #1 seller. Oh yeah, RIGHT — everybody LOVES that piece!

  • Lindsay says:

    Oh God, what kind of comments are those? Obviously you can’t compare to Pop music sales, but Ms. Meyers is amazing and I’m not surprised at all at her ranking. Both of the albums she released this year are outstanding. How about a big congratulations?!

  • Naomi says:

    It’s sad that classical music is now all about marketing and money. She’s obviously not someone that I’ll pay to go listen to but she’s definitely got the money herself to overpower the claasical industry despite the lack of talent.

  • Stephan Walliser says:

    Don’t diss all rich husbands. We owe them Glyndebourne and Naxos records (and who knows what else…).

    • Nick says:

      Naxos is an example of a rich husband? If the implication is that Naxos is where it is today because its founder, Klaus Heymann, was rich is stretching the truth to breaking point. It was a tiny operation that developed out of the earlier small-scale Marco Polo label. It succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest dreams because Heymann’s vision of original digital recordings at affordable prices using untraditional marketing outlets was shared by millions of record buyers.

      If Mr Walliser is casting aspersions on the fact that most of the violin repertoire on Naxos recordings is performed by Mr. Haymann’s wife, Takako Nishizaki, he clearly is unaware that she had been awarded second prize in the 1964 Leventritt Competition. First prize that year went to one Itzhak Perlman! Ms Nishizaki must have made dozens of recordings for the label before Naxos began to make much profit.

      It’s also unlikely that Ms Akiko Meyers recording of the Four Seasons will come anywhere close to selling the number of copies of Ms. Nishizaki’s recording of the same work. That stands at well over 1 million. Plus Ms Nishizaki was not performing on the most expensive violin in the world, a fact which gained huge worldwide PR for Ms. Meyers not long before the recording was issued.

  • BeenThereDoneThat says:

    It’s no secret that Ms. Meyers comes from a wealthy family, so no need to put all the burden on her husband, but she is a reputable player as well.

  • Sarah S says:

    Her playing is average at best. Her career was completely over until she married a wealthy finance guy and ‘hey presto! top of the charts’. It’s all PR BS.