The 50 best-selling music artists of all time

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift. Theo Wargo/Getty

Pop sensations like Taylor Swift have ignited their stardom in recent years, but Swift still isn’t the best-selling artist of all time.

Insider turned to the Recording Industry Association of America’s (RIAA) list to find out who is. The list is based on total certified album units sold in the US (including streaming figures).

Swift has, however, jumped ahead of Bob Seger and Guns n’ Roses since last year after dropping hit albums “Folklore” and “Evermore.”

England’s greatest rock band holds the top spot on this all-time ranking of best-selling artists by album sales, and it looks untouchable on a list filled with a number of surprising appearances.

It could be somewhat shocking to find out, for instance, that smooth-jazz saxophonist Kenny G has sold more albums than Eminem, and that country star Garth Brooks has sold more than Elvis Presley and Michael Jackson.

John Lynch contributed to a previous version of this post.

Check out the 50 best-selling music artists of all time in the US by album sales:

50. Dave Matthews Band – 34.5 million units
Dave matthews
49. Britney Spears – 34.5 million units
Britney spears
48. Bon Jovi – 34.5 million units
Bon jovi
47. Def Leppard – 35.5 million units
Def leppard
46. Bob Dylan – 36 million units
Bob dylan
45. Tupac Shakur – 36.5 million units
Tupac shakur
44. Backstreet Boys – 37 million units
Backstreet boys
43. Tim McGraw – 37.5 million units
Tim mcgraw
42. Rod Stewart – 38 million units
Rod stewart
41. Foreigner – 38 million units
Foreigner
40. Simon & Garfunkel – 38.5 million units
Simon & Garfunkel
39. Chicago – 38.5 million units
Chicago band
38. Eric Clapton – 40 million units
Eric Clapton
37. Reba McEntire – 41 million units
Reba mcentire
36. Queen – 43 million units
Queen
35. Santana – 43.5 million units
Carlos Santana
34. Alan Jackson – 43.5 million units
Alan jackson
33. Guns N’ Roses – 44.5 million units
Guns n roses
32. Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band – 44.5 million units
Bob seger
31. Taylor Swift – 46 million units
Taylor swift
30. Eminem – 46.5 million units
Eminem
29. Alabama – 46.5 million units
Alabama band
28. Kenny Rogers – 47.5 million units
Kenny rogers
27. Shania Twain – 48 million units
Shania twain
26. Kenny G – 48 million units
Kenny g
25. Journey – 49 million units
Journey
24. Neil Diamond – 49.5 million units
Neil diamond
23. Celine Dion – 51 million units
Celine dion
22. U2 – 52 million units
U2
21. Fleetwood Mac – 54.5 million units
Fleetwood mac
20. Van Halen – 56.5 million units
Van halen
19. Whitney Houston – 60 million units
Whitney houston
18. Metallica – 63 million units
Metallica
17. Madonna – 64.5 million units
Madonna
16. Bruce Springsteen – 65.5 million units
Bruce springsteen
15. The Rolling Stones – 66.5 million units
Rolling stones
14. Aerosmith – 66.5 million units
Aerosmith
13. Mariah Carey – 68.5 million units
Mariah carey
12. Barbra Streisand – 68.5 million units
Barbra Streisand
11. George Strait – 69 million units
George strait
10. Pink Floyd – 75 million units
Pink floyd
9. AC/DC – 75 million units
AC/DC
8. Elton John – 79 million units
Elton john
7. Billy Joel – 84.5 million units
Billy joel
6. Michael Jackson – 89 million units
Michael jackson
5. Led Zeppelin – 111.5 million units
Led zeppelin
4. Eagles – 120 million units
The eagles
3. Elvis Presley – 146.5 million units
Elvis presley
2. Garth Brooks – 157 million units
Garth brooks
1. The Beatles – 183 million units
The Beatles