Ask Billboard: Any News On Britney Spears' New Album?

Britney Spears - Ooh La La (From The Smurfs 2)

This week's mailbag looks at when we might expect Spears' next full-length, how big a radio hit Robin Thicke's 'Blurred Lines' could be, Miley Cyrus' career sales and more

As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, as well as general music musings, to Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S. Or, Tweet questions to Gary Trust: @gthot20


Hey Gary,

What were the top-selling Independence Day-related songs last week?


Abum Ezeonwu

Hi Abum,

As the U.S. had a Yankee Doodle dandy time celebrating over the July 4 holiday, revelers made holiday-appropriate songs their soundtrack.

Here's a look at the five top-selling such downloads for the Nielsen SoundScan tracking week ending on July 7:

"God Bless the U.S.A.," Lee Greenwood (23,000, up 532%)
"Freedom Song (They'll Never Take Us Down)," Neil Diamond (22,000 in its first week)
"Party in the U.S.A.," Miley Cyrus (18,000, up 72%)
"Firework," Katy Perry (14,000, up 59%)
"Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)," Toby Keith (12,000, up 208%)

(Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A.," by the way, just missed the top five: 12,000 [slightly less than Keith's sum], up 358%.)

It's impressive that Diamond's song ranks as the week's second-best-selling independence-themed track, given its lack of familiarity. The song was written in response to the bombings at the Boston Marathon in April. Diamond sang it live for the first time in Washington, D.C., on July 4 at that day's Nationals-Brewers game and at the PBS "A Capitol Fourth" concert, broadcast live from the U.S. Capitol.

Best of all, sales of "Freedom Song" benefit the One Fund Boston, as well as the Wounded Warrior Project.

"I was moved by the unity and the attitude of the people in Boston," Diamond has said. "And that's really all a songwriter needs, is to be inspired. It doesn't happen very often but when it does you have to follow that muse, and I did."

NEXT: Air Is Thicke