List of Billboard 200 number-one independent albums
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Though not clearly defined, an independent record label is generally considered to be any label that is not part of the big four record companies, which consist of Sony Music Entertainment, EMI Group, Warner Music Group, and Universal Music Group. Billboard considers Disney Music Group to be an independent label despite being part of The Walt Disney Company, the largest media and entertainment conglomerate in the world.
Some of the independently released albums to have topped the Billboard 200, such as the Eagles' Long Road Out of Eden (2007), Radiohead's In Rainbows (2008) and Pearl Jam's Backspacer (2009), are from former major label acts who had developed strong and established fanbases from their time being signed to a major label.
- N.W.A – Niggaz4Life (Ruthless Records/Priority Records), 1991
- Ice Cube – The Predator (Priority Records/EMI), 1992
- Various Artists – The Lion King Soundtrack (Walt Disney Records), 1994
- Various Artists – Friday Soundtrack (Priority Records), 1995
- Various Artists – Pocahontas Soundtrack (Walt Disney Records), 1995
- Bone Thugs-N-Harmony – E 1999 Eternal (Ruthless Records), 1995
- Tha Dogg Pound – Dogg Food (Death Row Records/Interscope), 1995
- Bone Thugs-N-Harmony – The Art of War (Ruthless Records), 1997
- Eagles – Long Road out of Eden (self-released), 2007
- Radiohead – In Rainbows (self-released), 2008
- Pearl Jam – Backspacer (Monkeywrench), 2009
- Vampire Weekend – Contra (XL Recordings), 2010
- Various Artists – Hope for Haiti Now (MTV Networks), 2010
- Arcade Fire – The Suburbs (Merge Records), 2010
- Cake – Showroom of Compassion (Upbeat Records), 2011
- Mac Miller – Blue Slide Park (Rostrum Records/Fontana Distribution), 2011
- Jack White – Blunderbuss (Third Man Records), 2012
- Mumford & Sons – Babel (Glassnote Records), 2012
- Jason Aldean – Night Train (Broken Bow Records), 2012
- Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires of the City (XL Recordings), 2013
- Queens of the Stone Age - ...Like Clockwork (Matador, Rekords Rekords), 2013
- Pearl Jam – Lightning Bolt (Monkeywrench), 2013
- Arcade Fire – Reflektor (Merge Records), 2013
- Jack White – Lazaretto (Third Man Records), 2014
- Lecrae – Anomaly (Reach Records), 2014
- Alabama Shakes – Sound & Color (ATO Records), 2015
- Mumford & Sons – Wilder Mind (Glassnote Records), 2015
- Tyrese – Black Rose (Caroline), 2015
- Janet Jackson – Unbreakable (BMG Rights Management), 2015
- Frank Ocean – Blond (Boys Don't Cry), 2016
- Metallica – Hardwired... to Self-Destruct (Blackened Recordings), 2016
- Trust, Gary. "Ask Billboard: Indies, No. 2 Hits & Teddy Pendergrass". billboard.com. January 22, 2010.
- Vitoulis, Alex. "Arcade Fire And Taylor Swift Sweep In With New No. 1s". billboard.biz. August 11, 2010.
- Siklos, Richard (February 9, 2009). "Why Disney wants DreamWorks". CNN/Money. Retrieved February 9, 2009.