- The Washington Times - Friday, October 6, 2017

Sales and digital streaming figures for Tom Petty’s discography have surged in the wake of the artist’s passing Monday, putting him on path to likely make a posthumous appearance on next week’s music charts.

Petty suffered cardiac arrest at his Malibu home Monday morning and died late that evening at the age of 66, marking the end of a decadeslong musical career that spawned nine platinum albums and nearly a dozen number-one singles including “I Won’t Back Down,” “Free Fallin’” and “Mary Jane’s Last Dance.”

Those tunes and other tracks and albums have since been purchased, streamed and downloaded in droves, according to music industry analysts, outpacing previous statistics several times over.

Sales reports for Oct. 2 and 3 suggest Petty’s total music sales increased by 6,781 percent when compared to figures from the previous two days, Nielsen Music reported this week. The musician sold about 3,000 albums and digital songs in the two days before his death, but moved roughly 218,000 combined album and song downloads within 48 hours of being hospitalized, according to Nielsen.

Users of online streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music and Google Play, meanwhile, played Petty’s song about 7 million times on Oct. 2, Billboard reported — an increase of about 1,149 percent compared to the day before his passing.

Petty’s 1993 “Greatest Hits” album is likely to chart on the next Billboard 200 when the weekly list of best-selling albums is released Sunday. Songs including “Free Fallin,” “I Won’t Back Down,” “Mary Jane’s Last Dance,” “You Don’t Know How It Feels” and “American Girl” are all likely to land on Billboard’s rock songs charts as well, according to the music industry trade magazine.

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