I managed to get hold of Santa's list and I'm here to tell you who has been naughty and nice this year. Michael Buble, The Black Keys and Andrea Bocelli have apparently been very nice, judging by their rewards on this week's chart. Buble's Christmas sold 479K copies this week, which is the largest tally for a non-debuting album since Susan Boyle's I Dreamed A Dream sold 510K in its fifth week two years ago. The Black Keys' El Camino sold 206K, nearly three times as many as the 73K that the duo's previous album, Brothers, sold in its first week. And Bocelli has two albums scaling this week's top 20, his current Concerto: Live In Central Park and his 2009 album My Christmas.
You already know about Adele, who must have been saintly this year, judging by her haul of gifts. 21 sold 187K copies this week, which pushes it over the 5 million mark. It's the first album to sell 5 million copies in a calendar year since Usher's Confessions sold 7,979,000 copies in 2004. In addition, Adele's DVD Live At Royal Albert Hall sold 80,000 copies this week, bringing its two-week total to 177,000. That's already more than any other video has sold in a calendar year since 2009, when three Michael Jackson videos sold more than 200K copies during the year. (The best-selling music video of 2010, Beyonce's I Am…World Tour, sold 139K copies that year.)
OK, now for the fun part. Who has been naughty? Mary J. Blige and Daughtry may have been transgressed. Blige's sequel to her hit album My Life drops from #6 to #21 in its third week. Daughtry's third album, Break The Spell, drops from #12 to #29 in its third week. Susan Boyle is also on the "naughty list." Her Someone To Watch Over Me, which spent just three weeks in the top 10, drops from #16 to #23 in its sixth week.
Three acts with a history of making the top 10 fell short of the top 10 this week, victims of the holiday crush of product. The Roots' Undun debuts at #17. This is the group's first album to miss the top 10 since Phrenology in 2002. Robin Thicke's Love After War bows at #22. This is the blue-eyed-soul star's first album to miss the top 10 since A Beautiful World in 2003. T-Pain's Revolver bows at #28. T-Pain's soft debut is surprising because his single, "5 O'Clock," is a big hit.
Michael Buble's Christmas logs its third straight week at #1. That's a new personal best for Buble. The album sold 479K copies this week, also a personal best, and the biggest one-week tally for a Christmas album since Josh Groban's Noel sold 757K in the week before Christmas 2007. Groban's album wound up as that year's #1 seller. Buble's album will probably wind up as this year's #2 seller (behind Adele). This week, it scoots from #7 to #4 on the year-to-date chart.
The Black Keys' El Camino debuts at #2, which represents a new high for the critically-acclaimed duo. The duo's previous album, Brothers, debuted at #3 in May 2010. The new album sold 114K digital copies, which puts it at #1 on the Digital Albums chart.
Brothers won a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album. And here's where it gets interesting. Brothers beat Arcade Fire's The Suburbs for that award. And The Suburbs won as Album of the Year. Which suggests that if the panel that decides the Grammy nominations in the top categories had allowed Brothers to compete for Album of the Year, it might very well have won (unless these two albums had split the alternative vote, allowing, say, Eminem's Recovery to win).
For car buffs only: El Camino was the name of a coupe utility vehicle produced by Chevrolet from 1959-1960 and again from 1964 to 1987. Weirdly, this week we also see the debut of the new album by Chevelle, which was the name of a mid-sized car that Chevrolet manufactured from 1964-1977. Chevelle's Hats Off To The Bull debuts at #20.
Amy Winehouse's Lioness: Hidden Treasures debuts at #5, nearly five months after her death. This is Winehouse's second top five album. It's the first album to reach the top five posthumously since Michael Jackson's MICHAEL debuted at #3 in December 2010. (The soundtrack to Michael Jackson's This Is It debuted at #1 in November 2009, a little more than four months after his death.) It's tacky to compare their posthumous showings. And, really, there's no comparison between a talented newcomer and one of the biggest music stars of all time.) Winehouse's album enters the U.K. chart at #1. It's her second #1 in her home country. Back To Black logged seven weeks at #1 in the U.K. (counting both the original and deluxe editions).
Glee: The Music, Season 3, Volume 7 debuts at #9. It's the 13th Glee album or EP to crack the top 10. Glee is now just one top 10 album shy of matching Mitch Miller & the Gang, which was a somewhat similar phenomenon in the late '50s and early '60s with their Sing Along With Mitch albums.
Miller, a top pop record producer of the 1950s, led the Gang through 14 top 10 albums between late 1958 and early 1962. The albums were so successful, they spawned a weekly TV show that ran from 1961 to 1964. Glee is far more respected for creativity than Sing Along With Mitch was. For example, Glee received an Emmy nomination as Best Comedy Series in both of its first two seasons and a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Vocal Album for its initial album. The main similarity is that the shows took popular songs, old and new, and put their own stamp on them in a way that proved entertaining to a mass audience.
This is the third year in a row that a regular Glee installment has debuted in the top 10 during December, which is the most competitive month of the year. Vol. 2 debuted at #3 in December 2009; Vol. 4 bowed at #5 last December. As you can see, the numbers are declining, but the series isn't out of gas yet.
Shameless Plug: The Glee version of "We Are Young" by fun. featuring Janelle Monae enters Hot Digital Songs at #3. Toby Keith's "Red Solo Cup," which was featured on Glee, jumps from #20 to #8 on that chart. Will either or both crack the top 10 on the Hot 100? You'll find out later today when we post Chart Watch: Songs.
Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 albums.
1. Michael Buble, Christmas, 479,000. The album holds at #1 for the third week. This tops 2009's Crazy Love as Buble's longest-running #1 to date. This is its seventh week in the top 10. Four songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas," which drops from #79 to #85.
2. The Black Keys, El Camino, 206,000. This new entry is the duo's second top five album. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Lonely Boy" jumps from #76 to #54. "Gold On The Ceiling" debuts at #105.
3. Adele, 21, 187,000. The former #1 album dips from #2 to #3. This is its 42nd week in the top 10. Four songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Someone Like You," which dips from #9 to #10.
4. Justin Bieber, Under The Mistletoe, 158,000. The former #1 album dips from #3 to #4. This is its sixth week in the top 10. Three songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Mistletoe," which jumps from #21 to #16.
5. Amy Winehouse, Lioness: Hidden Treasures, 114,000. This new entry is Winehouse's second top five album. Back To Black peaked at #2 in March 2008 (after she swept the Grammys) and climbed as high as #7 in the wake of her death this year. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. Her cover of the Shirelles' "Will You Love Me Tomorrow" debuts at #73. Her cover of Ruby & the Romantics' "Our Day Will Come" bows at #180.
6. Andrea Bocelli, Concerto: Live In Central Park, 79,000. The album rebounds from #8 to #6 in its fourth week. This is its third week in the top 10. The album has sold 291K copies in its first four weeks.
7. Drake, Take Care, 73,000. The former #1 album drops from #4 to #7 in its fourth week. Five songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Headlines," which drops from #22 to #28.
8. Nickelback, Here And Now, 66,000. The album drops from #5 to #8 in its third week. "When We Stand Together" drops from #40 to #63 on Hot Digital Songs.
9. TV Soundtrack, Glee: The Music, Season 3, Volume 7, 58,000. This new entry is the 13th Glee or album or EP to make the top 10. Five songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by a cover of Michael Jackson's "Man In The Mirror," which debuts at #50.
10. Korn, Path Of Totality, 55,000. This new entry is the band's 11th top 10 album. Except for a 2006 live release, Korn hadn't missed the top 10 since its 1995 debut, Korn. "Narcissistic Cannibal" (featuring Skrillex) enters Hot Digital Songs at #152.
Four albums drop out of the top 10 this week. Mary J. Blige's My Life II…The Journey Continues (Act 1) drops from #6 to #21, Rihanna's Talk That Talk drops from #7 to #12, Now 40 drops from #9 to #14, and Lady Antebellum's Own The Night drops from #10 to #15.
Scotty McCreery's Clear As Day drops from #11 to #13 in its 10th week. The album also returns to #1 on Top Country Albums for a sixth week. This marks the second time it has displaced the latest album by the hottest group in country music, Lady Antebellum.
Andrea Bocelli's pMy Christmas jumps from #17 to #16. It's #1 on Top Catalog Albums for the second straight week (and the sixth week overall). The album peaked at #2 in the 2009 holiday season and rose as high as #11 in the 2010 holiday season.
The Twilight Series: Breaking Dawn, Part 1 drops from #20 to #38 in its fifth week. It's the top-charting soundtrack to a theatrically-released movie for the fifth straight week.
Very Best Of Neil Diamond debuts at #46. Diamond has been at this a very long time. His first Greatest Hits album charted in the summer of 1968. He has since charted with more than 20 more compilations or live albums. 2011 has been Diamond's year for recognition. In March, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. On Dec. 5, he received a Kennedy Center Honor. The show is set to air on Dec. 28.
The soundtrack to David Fincher's new movie The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo debuts at #103. The score is by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, who won an Oscar for their score to Fincher's previous movie, The Social Network. That soundtrack peaked at #20 in October 2010. It has sold 137K copies.
New Year's Eve was #1 at the box-office over the weekend. The soundtrack didn't sell enough copies to make The Billboard 200.
Coming Attractions: Anthony Hamilton's Back To Love is expected to be next week's top new entry, with sales in the 55K range. Also due: Music From And Inspired by the Movie: Mac and Devlin Go To High School by Wiz Khalifa & Snoop Dogg, Metallica's EP Beyond Magnetic and Baytl by Gucci Mane & V-Nasty.