Yesterday we reported the final weekly Top 10 Digital Downloads list of 2013, but now we have a special end-of-year treat: The Top 10 most downloaded songs for the entire year, as found by our pals at Billboard and Nielsen Soundscan.
Robin Thicke topped the charts this year with his hit "Blurred Lines," which sold 6.5 million downloads despite the protests of feminist groups and Marvin Gaye's estate. Following Thicke was a track that debuted during 2012, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's hit "Thrift Shop," which totaled 6.15 million downloads this year. The hip-hop pair was the most-downloaded act of 2013, which comes in part thanks to its being the only act to place two songs in the Top 10 for the year. We'll get to that later.
Imagine Dragons, another 2012 act, was the most consistent across the year-end charts, taking no. 4 on the best-selling albums list and no. 3 on the most downloaded list, moving 5.5 million copies of its hit "Radioactive." Dragons was the only rock group on the Digital Downloads Top 10, and Florida Georgia Line (yet another 2012 group) sold 4.69 million downloads of "Cruise."
Lorde brings things back to 2013 with "Royals," which sold 4.42 million downloads and is one of only two songs on the year-end list that is still on the current weekly Top 10. Katy Perry, who follows Lorde at no. 6 with "Roar," is the other current entry. Her single sold 4.41 million copies.
Pink places no. 6, selling 4.32 million copies of "Just Give Me A Reason, followed by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's second entry, "Can't Hold Us," which sold 4.26 million downloads. Bruno Mars sold 3.93 million units of "When I Was Your Man," and Rihanna moved 3.85 million units of "Stay" to round off the list at nos. 9 and 10, respectively.
You may have noticed we stopped indicating tracks that were released during 2012. That's because seven of the ten singles on 2013's Top 10 list were actually released during the previous year. We're not sure what this says about the quality of music from the previous year, but it certainly indicates listeners need to keep up better with the music industry.