Taylor Swift's 1989 this week becomes the first album to spend its first three weeks at #1 on The Billboard 200 since Beyonce's Beyonce did it last December. Swift’s previous album, Red, also spent its first three weeks at #1. Swift is the first artist with back-to-back albums that each spent their first three weeks at #1 since Eminem did it in 2000-2002 with The Marshall Mathers LP (which was #1 for its first eight weeks) and The Eminem Show (which was #1 for its first five weeks).
1989 sold 306K copies this week. It has sold 1,994,000 copies in its first three weeks.
Swift’s run at #1 will end next week with the arrival of One Direction's FOUR, which will sell north of 400K. If this feels like déjà vu all over again, it should. Red was bumped from the #1 spot after three weeks by One Direction’s Take Me Home.
Foo Fighters's Sonic Highways debuts at #2 (190K). It’s the band’s eighth studio album; its seventh in a row to make the top 10; its fifth in a row to crack the top three.
Pink Floyd lands its 10th top 10 album as The Endless River debuts at #3 (168K). It’s the band’s 15th and final studio album; its first since The Division Bell 20 years ago. The mostly-instrumental album consists of “revisited and reworked” versions of material that was initially recorded for The Division Bell. It’s the band’s first release since the death of keyboardist and founding member Richard Wright in September 2008. The Endless River is Pink Floyd’s eighth studio album in a row to make the top 10. The album enters The U.K.’s Official Albums Chart at #1. It’s the band’s sixth #1 in the U.K.
Garth Brooks'sMan Against Machine debuts at #4 (118K). It’s his 16th top 10 album. Unless it moves up in a subsequent week (which is rare—albums generally peak in their opening weeks), Man Against Machine will become Brooks’s lowest-charting regular studio album since his eponymous debut album, which was released in April 1989 and finally peaked at #13 in February 1992. The album is available digitally only through Brooks’ own GhostTunes—maybe not the smartest idea when you’re attempting a comeback and need everything to line up in your favor. Brooks has a consolation prize on this week’s charts: Man Against Machine enters Top Country Albums at #1. It’s 14th #1. I wrote all about this in a separate blog which we posted last Thursday. If you missed it, here’s a link.
This is the first time since the week that included Christmas that each of the top four albums has sold more than 100K.
Big K.R.I.T.'s Cadillactica debuts at #5 (44K). It’s his second studio album—and his second to make the top five. Live From The Underground hit #5 in 2012.
Nick Jonas's Nick Jonas debuts at #6 (37K). This is Jonas’ seventh top 10 album, counting five as a member of Jonas Brothers and one as the leader of Nick Jonas & The Administration. Jonas’ current top 30 hit “Jealous” is a textbook example of how a faded teen star can reposition himself to compete in the mainstream pop market.
Pentatonix's That’s Christmas To Me rebounds from #23 to #7 in its fourth week (33K). This is the album’s second week in the top 10—and its highest ranking to date. Pentatonix’s EP PTXmas hit #7 last Christmas. Will That’s Christmas To Me become the best-selling Christmas album of 2014? It’s sure starting to look that way.
Now 52 drops from its #2 peak to #8 in its third week (33K).
Sam Smith's In The Lonely Hour dips from #8 to #9 in its 22nd week (29K). The album has climbed as high as #2 … Bette Midler's It’s The Girls! drops from its #3 peak to #10 in its second week (28K).
George Strait's The Cowboy Rides Away: Live From AT&T Stadium rebounds from #60 to #11 in its ninth week (27K). The album has climbed as high as #4. Walmart has an exclusive on a CD/DVD combo. Strait was the subject of fond ribbing at last week’s CMA Awards, where he was nominated for Entertainer of the Year for the 19th (!) time.
Michael Buble’s 2011 album Christmas rebounds from #50 to #13 in its 32nd chart week (25K). This is the fourth holiday season in a row in which the album has been a chart-buster. The album logged five weeks at #1 in 2011 and rebounded to #3 in 2012 and #8 in 2013. Buble’s album returns to #1 on Top Catalog Albums, displacing Led Zeppelin IV. This is its 16th week at #1 on that chart.
Damien Rice's My Favourite Faded Fantasy debuts at #15 (24K). It’s his third studio album; his first to crack the top 20. The title echoes Kanye West's 2010 album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.
Whitney Houston's Whitney Houston Live: Her Greatest Performances debuts at #17 (21K). It’s Houston’s second posthumous album release. I Will Always Love You: The Best Of Whitney Houston hit #14 in late 2012.
Frozen drops from #13 to #18 in its 51st week (21K). It’s #1 on Top Soundtracks for the 41st week.
Zac Brown Band'sGreatest Hits So Far… debuts at #20 (20K). If the title sounds familiar, it should. P!nk's Greatest Hits…So Far!!! reached #5 in February 2011.
Queen's Forever debuts at #36 (10K). The band first cracked the top 40 in April 1975 with Sheer Heart Attack.
Coming Attractions: One Direction's FOUR will debut at #1 next week with first-week sales north of 400K. Also due: Nickelback's No Fixed Address (about 60K), In This Moment's Black Widow (24K) and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt. 1 soundtrack (21K).
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