The year 2020 may be undoubtedly challenging for everyone, but at least one highly successful event can be chalked up during this period. Taylor Swift’s eighth album, Folklore, released July 24, has quickly amassed first-week sales of 846,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen Music.

If that sounds like a big number, it is. It happens to be enough to place the release on the top of the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, as well as mark the biggest album debut of the year so far. She has far outpaced the year’s previous best-seller, BTS, who have sold 574,000 copies of Map of the Soul to date since the K-pop group’s album debuted in February.

Folklore’s tally has also scored Swift her seventh No. 1 album, tying her with Janet Jackson and putting her just behind Madonna and Barbra Streisand in terms of female artists who have racked up multiple No. 1 sets (Madonna has nine; Streisand 11). However, all of Swift’s No. 1 albums have entered directly at the top, making her the leading female artist in that particular realm.

Folklore, recorded on the down-low during quarantine and released as a surprise, comes less than a year after her most recent album, Lover, dropped in August of 2019.  The set features collaborations with Aaron Dessner, Bon Iver, Jack Antonoff and a mysterious William Bowery, whom fans believe to be Swift's boyfriend, actor Joe Alwyn. The video for the first single, "Cardigan," was also released on July 24.

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