The Best-Selling Albums in South Korean History - Part 5: 50-41

Continuing on from yesterday’s article, we step straight into part five of our series of the best-selling albums in South Korean history.

Our list of the ninety-seven albums which have sold more than one million copies in South Korea - making them the best-selling albums in South Korean history - continues with the next ten entries: numbers fifty through forty-one.

The figures showcased in this series of articles were sourced from Wikipedia, and all album figures were correct at the time of writing.

50: Lee Moon-sae - I Don’t Know Yet (1,500,000 copies sold)

Since making his debut in the South Korean entertainment industry in 1978, ballad singer Lee Moon-sae has released sixteen full-length albums. The artist was also well-known for being the host of MBC FM radio show “Starry Night” for eleven years between 1985 and 1996.

Lee Moon-sae’s 1985 album “I Don’t Know Yet” was the third album he had released, published under the King Records label, whom he went on to release another three albums under afterwards.

The artist’s first appearance on this list comes along with a total of 1.5 million album sales.

49: Seventeen - Heng:garae (1,505,837 copies sold)

Seventeen is certainly showcasing itself as a powerhouse of South Korean album sales, with the thirteen member group already showcasing it’s fifth entry to this list.

The group’s seventh EP - 2020’s “Heng:garae” - featured six tracks, including the singles “My My” and the well-known “Left & Right”. Members of the group worked on all six of the tracks on the release.

The EP had sold more than 1,000,000 pre-order copies, which was the highest for the group at the time. To date, the release has seen sales top over 1.5 million copies.

48: Blackpink - The Album (1,515,508 copies sold)

YG Entertainment’s popular girl group quartet BLACKPINK makes a splash on this countdown, coming in at number forty-eight.

Up until very recently (just weeks ago), BLACKPINK’s 2020 album “The Album” was the best-selling K-pop girl group album of all time, and held the record for more than eighteen months.

For the release, Jennie, Jisoo, Rose, and Lisa recorded more than ten new songs, although only eight of these songs made it onto the final tracklist.

800,000 pre-orders were placed within a period of just six days, according to YG Entertainment, which included 530,000 copies in South Korea, along with other pre-orders placed worldwide. “The Album” has now sold more than 1.5 million copies to date.

47: NCT Dream - Beatbox (1,522,181 copies sold)

NCT sub-unit NCT Dream makes their triumphant return to the list of the best-selling albums in South Korea following their previous entry with “Hello Future” (number sixty-three).

NCT Dream’s 2022 release “Beatbox” is a repackaged version of previously released album “Glitch Mode” from earlier this year, featuring four new tracks, including lead single “Beatbox”, as well as “To My First”, “Sorry, Heart”, and “On the Way”.

The album has sold more than 1.5 million copies in the two and a half months since it’s release.

*Please note: As a popular recent release, figures for this album may drastically change, and the above figures were correct at the time of writing.

46: Enhypen - Manifesto: Day 1 (1,563,763 copies sold)

Belift Lab’s seven-member group Enhypen makes their second appearance on this list, this time making it into the top fifty.

The group’s most recent EP, which was released just last month, “Manifesto: Day 1”, featured six tracks, including leading single “Future Perfect (Pass the Mic)” and main B-side “ParadoXXX Invasion”. It also saw member Jake work as a songwriter on the track “Shout Out”.

In the seven weeks since it was released, “Manifesto: Day 1” has seen sales figures reach over 1.5 million copies.

*Please note: As a popular recent release, figures for this album may drastically change, and the above figures were correct at the time of writing.

45: NCT - Resonance Pt. 2 (1,570,499 copies sold)

Not as a sub-unit, but this time just as a massive twenty-three member group, SM Entertainment’s never-ending boy group NCT makes an appearance on our list.

With the group’s 2020 release “Resonance Pt. 2”, all members of the groups three sub-units - NCT 127, NCT Dream, and WayV - collaborated on the full-length album release. The NCT 2020 project also saw the introduction of new members Shotaro and Sungchan.

The seventy-minute long twenty-one track album saw sales reaching almost 1.6 million copies.

44: Shin Seung-hun - Invisible Love (1,580,000 copies sold)

Following his previous entries on the list with 1990’s “Reflection of You in Your Smile” and 1998’s “Shin Seung Hun VI”, we see the return of the “Emperor of Ballads” - Shin Seung-hun.

With his third appearance in the list coming from the best-selling 1991 album “Invisible Love”, it’s easy to see why the artist was one of the most popular South Korean singers of the 1990’s.

The album has seen a total of 1.58 million sales in the three decades since its initial release.

43: Jo Sung-mo - Classic (1,599,111 copies sold)

South Korean pop ballad singer Jo Sung-mo made his debut back in 1998, and has gone on to release some of the best-selling albums in South Korean history.

Jo Sung-mo’s third studio album, 2000’s “Classic”, was released under label GM in both CD and cassette formats, and peaked at number two on the Korean charts.

The album falls just less than 1,000 albums short of selling 1.6 million copies in the twenty-two years since it was released.

42: Roo’ra - The Angel Who Lost Wings (1,600,000 copies sold)

Roo’ra is a former co-ed hip hop and dance pop vocal group from South Korea, who became one of the most popular musical acts in the country in the 1990’s. The group initially disbanded in 2001, before reforming in 2009 to release one final album.

But the album grabbing our attention today is their second album. Released in 1995 under World Music Co., “The Angel Who Lost Wings” is Roo’ra’s best-selling album. The album also won the Main Prize at the 1995 Golden Disc Awards.

“The Angel Who Lost Wings” sold a total of 1.6 million copies.

41: Seo Taiji and Boys - Seo Taiji and Boys III (1,600,000 copies sold)

They’re the group who inspired this nine-article series on the best-selling albums in South Korea. Bringing along the return of Seo Taiji to our list, he comes in this time as a member of the K-pop group that he shot to fame and that helped to shoot the genre to fame as well - Seo Taiji and Boys.

Coming in at number forty-one on the list with their worst-performing album during their time as the premiere K-pop group, “Seo Taiji and Boys III” was the group’s third album, released in 1994.

Selling a total of 1.6 million copies, despite being the group’s worst-performing album in sales, it still makes it one of the best-selling albums in South Korean history.

You can check out our review of “Seo Taiji and Boys III” here.

Have you listened to any of the albums listed above, or do you own any of them? Which of these ten albums are your favourite? Let us know by commenting on our socials @KpopWise. And make sure to tune in tomorrow as we showcase the albums from number forty to thirty-one on our list of the best-selling albums in South Korean history.

Ford Carter

Ford Carter is an online blogger studying journalism who's hundreds of articles across half a dozen fansites from the music and television industries have now been read more than 300,000 times. From his home in regional Australia, you'll often find him binging kdramas or rewatching old editions of the Eurovision Song Contest.

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