Toby Keith lands his fourth #1 album as Bullets In The Gun enters The Billboard 200 at #1. The album sold just 71,000 copies, which is the lowest tally for any album in its first week at #1 since Nielsen/SoundScan began tracking sales for Billboard in May 1991.Sugarland, had held that record for about a year with its 2009 live album Live On The Inside, which sold 76,000 copies in its first week. Here's the rest of the top five (or should that be bottom five?) for albums that sold the fewest copies in their first weeks at #1: Chrisette Michele's Epiphany (83K), B.o.B's B.o.B Presents: The Adventures Of Bobby Ray (84K) and Johnny Cash's American V: A Hundred Highways (88K).
Since 1991, seven albums have sold even fewer than 71,000 copies while they headed The Billboard 200, but none of those albums were in their first weeks at #1. That makes a difference, because albums tend to lose steam over time.
What's going on here? Albums are struggling, while individual songs are soaring. So far this year, just 23 albums have sold 500,000 copies, the traditional benchmark for a gold album. By contrast, 142 songs have sold 500,000 or more digital copies. The story is similar at every level on the sales ladder. Eight albums so far this year have sold 1 million copies, compared to 64 individual songs. Two albums have sold 2 million copies, compared to 24 individual songs. And no albums have sold 3 million copies so far this year, while six songs have reached that threshold.
Now you know why music executives are worried. They're happy that songs are selling so well, but that's not remotely as profitable a business as albums have been.
To be fair, some albums are still selling. Eminem's Recovery has sold 2,768,000 copies in its first 16 weeks, which would have been considered robust in almost any era in recording history (except for the period around the turn of the millennium when album sales went through the roof).
50 Cent's 2003 smash Get Rich Or Die Tryin' (which spent its first 24 weeks in the winners circle). Em tops Lil Wayne's 2008 smash Tha Carter III, which spent its first 15 weeks in the top 10.
This is heady company: Get Rich Or Die Tryin' was the best-selling album of 2003. Tha Carter III was the best-seller of 2008. And Recovery is the best-seller so far in 2010.
Rihanna, is a likely candidate for Record and Song of the Year.John Lennon, who died by gunfire, enter the top 40. We also have a top 40 debut by Faith Evans, the widow of The Notorious B.I.G., who likewise died by gunfire. Details below.
Taylor Swift and Kanye West just keep crossing paths. This week, they each have new songs that debut in the top five on Hot Digital Songs. Who came out ahead? Swift's "Speak Now" debuts at #2, with first-week sales of 217,000. West's "Runaway" (featuring Pusha T) bows at #4, with first-week sales of 174,000.
Swift's previous release has also outsold West's previous release. Swift's "Mine" has sold 1,109,000 copies in 10 weeks. West's "Power" has sold 423,000 copies in 15 weeks.
Swift will have a new song every week for the next few weeks. "Back To December" will chart next week, followed by "Mean" and "Story Of Us." I don't think Kanye will attempt to match her pace.
Cee-Lo Green's "F**ck You (Forget You)" is the year's most unlikely transatlantic smash. The song jumps from #16 to #12 on Hot Digital Songs. It jumps from #21 to #18 on the Hot 100. The smash also debuts at #1 in the U.K. (where it is listed simply as "Forget You"). It's Green's biggest hit in both countries since Gnarls Barkley's 2006 smash "Crazy" logged seven weeks at #2 in the U.S. and nine weeks at #1 in the U.K.
The secret to the success of "F**k You (Forget You)" isn't just its envelope-pushing title. If that's all the song had going for it, it would have been a one-week wonder. The record's irrepressible energy and good spirits are what put it across.Danger Mouse, are the only African American musicians to win a Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album, an award that usually goes to hip rock acts such as the White Stripes and Radiohead. Gnarls Barkley won for its 2006 album St. Elsewhere, which features "Crazy." That song won a second Grammy as Best Urban/Alternative Performance.
Let me mop up a few details. Bruno Mars' album sold 27,000 digital copies, which makes it #1 on the Digital Albums chart. The next two albums on that chart are digital-only releases: Lil Wayne's I Am Not A Human Being (the CD was released yesterday) and Jason Mraz's Life Is Good EP.
There are 15 Glee hits on the 200-deep Hot Digital Songs chart, topped by Chris Colfer's rendition of the Beatles' 1964 blockbuster "I Want To Hold Your Hand," which bows at #15.
Here's the top 10 on Hot Digital Songs, as calculated by Nielsen/SoundScan. Far*East Movement featuring Cataracs & Dev's "Like A G6" holds at #1 for the second week (221K). Taylor Swift's "Speak Now" debuts at #2 (217K). Bruno Mars' "Just The Way You Are" dips from #2 to #3 (180K). Kanye West featuring Pusha T's "Runaway" debuts at #4 (174K). Nelly's "Just A Dream" drops from #3 to #5 (166K). Rihanna's "Only Girl (In The World) drops from #4 to #6 (145K). Flo Rida featuring David Guetta's "Club Can't Handle Me" holds at #7 for the second week (123K). Usher featuring Pitbull's "DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love" drops from #6 to #8 (115K). Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" drops from #5 to #9 (111K). Taio Cruz's "Dynamite" drops from #8 to #10 (104K).
Here's the lowdown on this week's top 10 albums.Toby Keith, Bullets In The Gun, 71,000. This new entry is Keith's fourth #1 album; his 11thto crack the top 10. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Bullets In The Gun" debuts at #158. "Trailerhood" jumps from #194 to #165. Kenny Chesney, Hemingway's Whiskey, 65,000. The former #1 album slips to #2 in its second week. "Boys Of Fall" falls from #43 to #55 on Hot Digital Songs.
Bruno Mars, Doo-Wops & Hooligans, 55,000. This new entry is Mars' debut album. Five songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Just The Way You Are," which dips from #2 to #3. Eminem, Recovery, 52,000. The former #1 album rebounds from #5 to #4 in its 16th week. Three songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Love The Way You Lie" (featuring Rihanna), which dips from #11 to #13. Zac Brown Band, You Get What You Give, 43,000. The former #1 album drops from #3 to #5 in its third week. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "As She's Walking Away" (featuring Alan Jackson) drops from #60 to #65. "Free" drops from #127 to #152. Waka Flocka Flame, Flockaveli, 37,000. This new entry is the rapper's debut album. "No Hands" (featuring Roscoe Dash and Wale) jumps from #38 to #25 on Hot Digital Songs. Linkin Park, A Thousand Suns, 37,000. The former #1 album rebounds from #8 to #7 in its fourth week. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Catalyst" dips from #70 to #71. "Waiting For The End" surges from #200 to #98. Katy Perry, Teenage Dream, 32,000. The former #1 album rebounds from #18 to #8 in its seventh week. This is its fifth week in the top 10. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Teenage Dream" drops from #5 to #9. "California Gurls" (featuring Snoop Dogg) drops from #32 to #40. Trey Songz, Passion, Pain & Pleasure, 32,000. The album drops from #7 to #9 in its fourth week. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Bottoms Up" (featuring Nicki Minaj) jumps from #15 to #11. "Can't Be Friends" jumps from #126 to #112. Selena Gomez & the Scene, A Year Without Rain, 27,000. The album holds at #10 in its third week. The title song drops from #52 to #64 on Hot Digital Songs.
Lil Wayne's I Am Not A Human Being plummets from #2 to #16 in its second week. With the release yesterday of the CD, expect the album to zoom back up next week, probably to #1.
Three other albums drop out of the top 10 this week. Gucci Mane's Appeal: Georgia's Most Wanted drops from #4 to #18, Eric Clapton's Clapton drops from #6 to #19 and Maroon5's Hands All Over drops from #9 to #11.
David Archuleta's The Other Side Of Down bows at #13. It's Archie's third top 30 album. David Archuleta peaked at #2 in November 2008. Christmas From The Heart hit #30 last year. Archie is still a teenager, but not for much longer. He turns 20 on Dec. 28.
Bring Me The Horizon bows at #17 with There Is A Hell Believe Me I've Seen It. There Is A Heaven Let's Keep It A Secret. (Whoever came up with that title was definitely paid by the word.) This is a breakthrough for the metal band, which peaked at #107 with 2008's Suicide Season.
Lennon has the top three albums on the week's Catalog Albums chart. They are Double Fantasy; Remember, which jumps from #79 to #66 on The Billboard 200 and Imagine, which re-enters the big chart at #88. Double Fantasy spent eight weeks at #1 in the wake of Lennon's murder in December 1980. Imagine had one week on top in October 1971.
The title song to that album, Lennon's most beloved solo work, re-enters Hot Digital Songs this week at #84. It has sold 755,000 digital copies.
Song Scorecard: Rihanna's 2008 hit "Disturbia" this week becomes the pop star's first song to top the 4 million mark in paid downloads. Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" tops the 2 million mark. It's her fourth song to reach this plateau.
The Social Network was #1 at the box-office for the second straight weekend. The soundtrack plummets from #20 to #109. The CD is being released on Friday, which should give the title a second wind. The week's #1 soundtrack is Glee: The Music, Volume 3: Showstoppers, which drops from #58 to #64. The #1 soundtrack to a theatrical movie is AC/DC's Iron Man 2, which drops from #70 to #101.Darius Rucker's Charleston, SC 1966 is expected to be next week's top new entry. Also due: Big Time Rush's BTR, The Band Perry's The Band Perry, All That Remains' For We Are Many, Far*East Movement's Free Wired and a slate of Christmas albums, including Celtic Thunder's Christmas, the Canadian Tenors' The Perfect Gift and Now That's What I Call Christmas! 4.
In two weeks, Sugarland's The Incredible Machine and Kings of Leon's Come Around Sundown will duke it out for #1.Nickelback's "Rockstar" and "Photograph," Fergie's "Fergalicious" and "Clumsy," Beyonce's "Irreplaceable" and "Halo," Iyaz's "Replay," Daughtry's "Home," Coldplay's "Clocks" and Rihanna's "SOS." (Is "SOS" a word?)
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