If a tree falls in the woods, does anybody hear it? If an independent artist sells the most albums of the week, does anybody report on it?
Apparently not… Tom MacDonald has actually sold (not streamed or TikTok’ed) the most units during the reporting week of March 4 – March 11 of his new collaborative album “The Brave” with Adam Calhoun. It moved 48,000-plus physical copies in 3 days, which Tom and partner and video director Nova Rockafeller personally sent out (complete with UPC codes).
Digitally, it reached #1 on the iTunes Overall Top Albums Chart in the U.S. According to Headline Planet, it “shot to #1 on the store’s all-genre sales chart,” leapfrogging even the Disney and Lin Manuel-Miranda juggernaut Encanto Soundtrack. It notably marked the first time Tom has released an album digitally in addition to his staggering physical sales model.
Moreover, “The Brave” has held #1 on the Overall Top Albums Chart and iTunes Top Hip-Hop Albums Chart, posting up 6.2 million total streams. It has bested the numbers of new projects from the late King Von and DaBaby x YoungBoy Never Broke Again. Its three music videos have cumulatively eclipsed 15 million views.
Tom explained how he followed all of the rules and guidelines and plotted the release around said guidelines, but still was ignored in a video appropriately titled “The Biggest Music Industry Screw Job Ever.” He shares receipts, screenshots, and emails with the reporting agency who ghosted him.
Tom said, “We offered them backend access to our store so that they can verify the numbers themselves directly. We would completely remove ourselves from the situation so they can see what we can see so there’s no chance the numbers could be defrauded or tampered with in any way. That is unprecedented access and transparency, it’s actually very dangerous for us to be giving out that kind of access but we wanted to be on the Billboard charts, we wanted to play with the big boys.”
He added, “At this point, I’ve had absolutely enough.”