Volatile rap icon Kanye West has made history yet again. The Recording Industry Association of America confirmed that his most recent full-length, The Life of Pablo, is the first streaming-only album ever to gain platinum status.
The Life of Pablo has been streamed over three billion times worldwide since it was released in February of 2016. Platinum certification is awarded to albums that have sold one million units in the US. Last year, the RIAA began including on-demand streams as part of its calculations, with 1,500 streams equally one album sale.
Billboard notes that The Life of Pablo’s certification isn’t entirely based on streaming, as West’s website is currently selling digital copies at $20 a pop. The exact breakdown of streams vs. album sales was not publicly disclosed.
Ye himself has not yet addressed the milestone, and though he is likely aware of it, we can’t expect him to do anything other than continue to generate revolutionary and exciting contributions to the music industry in whatever capacity inspires him.
That said, he has kept somewhat of a low profile for the past few months, aside from a recent collaboration with Mary J Blige following a mental health crisis and the kidnapping scare of his wife Kim Kardashian, both of which traumatizing events understandably prompted the prolific writer, rapper, producer, fashion icon and father of two to cancel his tour.0