Chart Watch

Week Ending Sept. 26, 2010: Moving Forward, Falling Back

Chart Watch

The Zac Brown Band's You Get What You Give enters The Billboard 200 at #1 this week, ahead of Maroon5's Hands All Over, which bows at #2. The race was fairly close (153,000 for the Brown Band, compared to 142,000 for Maroon5), but those tallies only added to the good news for the Brown Band, and compounded the disappointment for Maroon5. The Brown Band's previous studio album, The Foundation, debuted at #17 with first-week sales of just 44,000. By contrast, Maroon5's previous studio album, It Won't Be Soon Before Long, debuted at #1 with first-week sales of 429,000.

You Get What You Give includes collabos with Alan Jackson and Jimmy Buffett, each of whom has topped The Billboard 200 on his own. The album also enters Top Country Albums at #1. The Foundation and the band's live album Pass The Jar: Live both peaked at #2.

The top 10 (and #1) entry for You Get What You Give marks a big improvement over The Foundation, which took 64 weeks to finally break into the top 10 and 75 weeks to finally reach its peak at #9. The album has been a fixture on The Billboard 200 for 97 weeks. Remarkably, it has appeared in the top 50 for all but two of those weeks. It has never ranked lower than #54.

The Brown Band is nominated for four awards, including Entertainer of the Year, at the Country Music Assn. awards, which will be presented on Nov. 10.

Maroon5 has a consolation prize: Hands All Over is #1 on the Digital Albums chart. The album sold 62,000 digital copies. But even here, the group's tally is down from last time. It Won't Be Soon Before Long sold 102K digital copies in its first week in May 2007. (It was the first album ever to top 100K in digital sales in any one week.)

The Brown Band and Maroon5 have something in common: Both acts won the Grammy for Best New Artist. So did John Legend, whose new album, a collabo with the Roots, debuts at #8. The Brown Band won for 2009. Maroon5 and Legend were the winners for 2004 and 2005, respectively. (Maroon5 beat Kanye West, who may call for a recount after this week's tepid total.)

Eminem's Recovery this week pulls ahead of Lady Antebellum's Need You Now as the best-selling album so far in 2010. If Recovery can stay out front through the end of the year, Eminem will become the first artist in Nielsen/SoundScan history (which dates to 1991) to have the best-selling album of the year twice. The rap icon had the best-selling album of 2002, The Eminem Show.

50 Cent and the High School Musical cast came close. They each had the #1 album of one year and the #2 album of another year. Get Rich Or Die Tryin' was #1 for 2003. The Massacre was #2 for 2005. HSM was on top for 2006. HSM2 was #2 for 2007.

Recovery has sold 2,656,000 copies in 14 weeks. Need You Now has sold 2,641,000 copies in 35 weeks. The rest of the top five albums so far in 2010 are Justin Bieber's My World 2.0 (1,811,000), Lady Gaga's The Fame (1,399,000 this year) and Sade's Soldier Of Love (1,256,000).

For Eminem to hold on to his #1 standing, he will have to withstand late challenges from two artists who sold huge numbers of their last albums. Taylor Swift's Speak Now is set for release on Oct. 25. Susan Boyle's The Gift is due on Nov. 9. Swift's sophomore album, Fearless, sold 3 million copies in its first 22 weeks in late 2008 and early 2009. Boyle's debut album, I Dreamed A Dream, blew through 3 million copies in its first six weeks in late 2009.

Santana's Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics Of All Time debuts at #5. This gives Santana a nearly 41-year span of top five albums. The band first cracked the top five in November 1969 with Santana (which spawned the top 10 hit "Evil Ways").

The format of the new album echoes Barry Manilow's The Greatest Love Songs Of All Time, which debuted at #5 in late January. Both artists worked with industry legend Clive Davis on the albums. Veteran artists often reach a point where they need a thematic hook to sell albums. These ...Of All Time salutes, while a little cheesy, make you stop and look, which is the crucial first step in selling albums.

Rod Stewart, another Davis client, has reached the top five with four The Great American Songbook albums, as well as one volume each of rock and soul classics. Stewart's fifth standards album, Fly Me To The Moon..., is due Oct. 19.

Justin Bieber's My World 2.0 holds at #10 for the second week. This is its 27thconsecutive week in the top 10, which is its entire chart run. My World 2.0 is the first album to spend its first 27 weeks in the top 10 since *NSYNC's No Strings Attached in 2000.  *NSYNC, of course, featured another teen heartthrob named Justin. I'm sure if Mr. Bieber does half as well long-term as Justin Timberlake has done, he'll be thrilled.

Bruno Mars' first-rate "Just The Way You Are" returns to #1 on Hot Digital Songs, after being displaced last week by Rihanna's debuting "Only Girl (In The World)." "Just The Way You Are" sold 188,000 digital copies this week, bringing its 10-week total to 1,339,000. The song holds at #1 on the Hot 100 for the second straight week.

The song also debuts at #1 in the U.K. (where the title is "Just The Way You Are (Amazing)" to distinguish it from Billy Joel's 1978 hit of the same name.)  It's Mars' second transatlantic topper of 2010. B.o.B's "Nothin' On You," on which he was featured, also reached #1 in both countries. Mars is the first artist to have two transatlantic #1 hits in a calendar year since the Black Eyed Peas scored last year with "Boom Boom Pow" and "I Gotta Feeling." The difference, of course, is that the Peas are a top-level act, while Mars has yet to release his first full-length album.

Pop Quiz: We learned last week that Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler of Aerosmith will join American Idol next season as judges. Which artist has had more top 10 hits on the Hot 100? Answer below.

Here's the top 10 on Hot Digital Songs, according to Nielsen/SoundScan. Bruno Mars' "Just The Way You Are" rebounds from #2 to #1 (188K). Far*East Movement featuring Cataracs & Dev's "Like A G6" jumps from #7 to #2 (180K). Rihanna's "Only Girl (In The World)" slips from #1 to #3 (161K). Nelly's "Just A Dream" moves up from #5 to #4 (160K). Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream" dips from #4 to #5 (139K). Usher featuring Pitbull's "DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love" drops from #3 to #6 (133K). Taio Cruz's "Dynamite" rebounds from #9 to #7 (117K). Flo Rida featuring David Guetta's "Club Can't Handle Me" holds at #8 for the third straight week (113K). Eminem featuring Rihanna's "Love The Way You Lie" drops from #6 to #9 (111K). Glee Cast's "Empire State Of Mind" debuts at #10 (106K).

Quiz Answer: It's essentially a tie, but Jennifer Lopez is ahead due to a technicality. Lopez has had nine top 10 hits, counting LL Cool J's "Control Myself," on which she had featured billing. Steven Tyler has had eight top 10 hits with Aerosmith. In addition, Tyler and Joe Perry made a memorable guest appearance on Run-D.M.C.'s remake of Aerosmith's "Walk This Way," but they (oddly) didn't receive billing. So, technically, Tyler's count stops with Aerosmith's eight top 10 hits. However, because it is so close, I will accept either answer.

Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 albums.

1. Zac Brown Band, You Get What You Give, 153,000. This new entry is the group's first #1 album; its second to make the top 10. Three songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "As She's Walking Away" (featuring Alan Jackson), which jumps from #54 to #50.

2. Maroon5, Hands All Over, 142,000. This new entry is the group's third album to reach the top 10. Three songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Misery," which jumps from #35 to #16.

3. Linkin Park, A Thousand Suns, 70,000. The former #1 album drops to #3 in its second week. "Waiting For The End" drops from #76 to #147 on Hot Digital Songs.

4. Selena Gomez & The Scene, A Year Without Rain, 66,000. This new entry is the act's highest-charting album and its second top 10 album in a row. "A Year Without Rain" jumps from #38 to #26 on Hot Digital Songs. "Round & Round" jumps from #90 to #85.

5. Santana, Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics Of All Time, 66,000. This new entry is Santana's 12th album to reach the top 10. "Photograph" (featuring Chris Daughtry) enters Hot Digital Songs at #166. "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" (featuring India.Arie and Yo-Yo Ma) bows at #187.

6. Eminem, Recovery, 66,000. The former #1 album drops from #3 to #6 in its 14th week. Five songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Love The Way You Lie" (featuring Rihanna), which drops from #6 to #9.

7. Trey Songz, Passion, Pain & Pleasure, 66,000. The album drops from #2 to #7 in its second week. Two songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs. "Bottoms Up" (featuring Nicki Minaj) dips from #14 to #15. "Can't Be Friends" drops from #79 to #119.

8. John Legend & the Roots, Wake Up!, 63,000. This new entry is the fifth top 10 album for Legend; the sixth for the Roots. A cover version of Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes' 1976 hit "Wake Up Everybody (Part 1)" enters Hot Digital Songs at #199. (It sparked the album title.)

9. Billy Currington, Enjoy Yourself, 45,000. This new entry is Currington's first top 10 album. "Pretty Good At Drinkin' Beer" moves up from #95 to #94 on Hot Digital Songs.

10. Justin Bieber, My World 2.0., 33,000. The former #1 album holds at #10 for the second week. Three songs from the album are listed on Hot Digital Songs, topped by "Baby" (featuring Ludacris), which drops from #55 to #79.

Six albums drop out of the top 10 this week. Jamey Johnson's Guitar Song drops from #4 to #12, Robert Plant's Band Of Joy drops from #5 to #14, Weezer's Hurley drops from #6 to #24, Now 35 drops from #7 to #11, Brandon Flowers' Flamingo drops from #8 to #30, and Katy Perry's Teenage Dream drops from #9 to #13.

Five songs from the second season premiere episode of Glee debut in the top 25 on Hot Digital Songs. The highest-ranking is the cast's version of Jay-Z and Alicia Keys' "Empire State Of Mind," which debuts at #10. This is the first time that a Glee rendition of a hip-hop smash has made the top 10. (The five previous Glee songs to make the top 10 are the cast's versions of Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'," Queen's "Somebody To Love," Madonna's "Like A Prayer," Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse Of The Heart," Rick Springfield's "Jessie's Girl" and Lady Gaga's "Poker Face.")

Glee: The Music, Volume 3, Showstoppers returns to #1 on the Soundtracks chart for a fourth week on top. It jumps from #31 to #27 on The Billboard 200. AC/DC's Iron Man 2 is the #1 soundtrack to a theatrically-released movie for the eighth week. It jumps from #146 to #121 on The Billboard 200.

We're living in a texting era, which is starting to impact song titles. "OMG" by Usher featuring will.i.am topped the Hot 100 and Hot Digital Songs charts in the spring. Other current text-style titles include "B.M.F. (Blowin' Money Fast)" by Rick Ross featuring Styles P and "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" by Katy Perry.

Casting Crowns' 2007 album The Altar And The Door tops the Catalog Albums chart for the fourth time in five weeks. The album jumps from #48 to #46 on The Billboard 200.

Two catalog albums move up Nielsen/SoundScan's sales ladder this week. Lauryn Hill's 1998 solo debut album, The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill, tops the 7 million mark. Bush's 1995 debut album Sixteen Stone tops 6 million. Hill, incredibly, has yet to follow Miseducation with a second studio album.

Phil Collins' Going Back, consisting mostly of Motown covers, jumps to #1 on the British album chart. It's his sixth #1 album on that side of the Atlantic. Going Back was released in the U.S. yesterday.

Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps was #1 at the box-office in its opening weekend. The original Wall Street opened (and peaked) at #3 in December 1987. Michael Douglas won an Oscar for his performance in the film. David Byrne dominates the soundtrack to the sequel, with solo tracks, collabos with Brian Eno and tracks with Talking Heads. Craig Armstrong also has three tracks on the album.

R.I.P. Eddie Fisher, one of the most popular singers of the 1950s, died last week at age 82. Fisher had four #1 hits between 1952 and 1954, including his most famous song, "Oh! My Pa-Pa (O Mein Papa)." Fisher also had a #1 album, released at the end of 1952, Christmas With Eddie Fisher. But when the run of hits ended, it ended abruptly. Fisher made his final appearance in the top 40 in February 1957.

Heads Up: Kenny Chesney's Hemingway's Whiskey is expected to debut at #1 next week with a total in the range of 190,000. Lil Wayne's I Am Not A Human Being, which will be available only in digital form for its first two weeks, will start with sales of about 95,000. Also likely to debut in the top 10: Gucci Mane's The Appeal: Georgia's Most Wanted, Eric Clapton's Clapton and Jimmy Eat World's Invented. Also due: Neil Young's Le Noise, Lil Boosie's Incarcerated, Ice Cube's I Am The West, Soundgarden's Telephantasm, Jeremih's All About You, Phil Collins' Going Back and Bad Religion's The Dissent Of Man.

Useless Information: An eponymous album by My Darkest Days debuts at #38. Where does My Darkest Days rank among groups whose names begin with the word "My"? In between  My Chemical Romance, which climbed as high as #2, and My Bloody Valentine, which never charted.

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