Justin Timberlake's 'The 20/20 Experience' leads the year-end Top Billboard 200 Albums chart, the first time a solo male artist has crowned the tally since 2005. That year, 50 Cent's "The Massacre" (on Shady/Aftermath/Interscope Records) claimed the prize.
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'The 20/20 Experience' (RCA) debuted at No. 1 on the weekly Billboard 200, selling 968,000 copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. At press time, it remains the largest single sales week of the year for an album, and reigns as the year's best-selling title. It spent three weeks at No. 1 and was followed by sequel 'The 20/20 Experience (2 of 2),' which debuted at No. 1 on the Oct. 19 chart.
'The 20/20 Experience' spent 18 non-consecutive weeks in the top 10 on the Billboard 200 chart (all during the chart year). The album spun-off the singles "Suit & Tie," featuring Jay Z (a No. 3 hit on the Billboard Hot 100), "Mirrors" (No. 2) and "Pusher Love Girl" (No. 64).
Timberlake's No. 1 placing follows two years where Adele's '21' ruled the roost. The English singer's XL/Columbia set marked the first release to go back to back as the year's top album since 1983 and 1984, when Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' (Epic) was No. 1. While she may not be No. 1, Adele is still present on the year-end tally. "21" is, coincidentally, No. 21 on Top Billboard 200 Albums.
As for Timberlake, this is his first turn at No. 1 on the year-end Top Billboard 200 Albums as a solo artist. As a member of 'N Sync, he was No. 1 in 2000 with "No Strings Attached" (Jive).
At No. 2 on the year-end Top Billboard 200 Albums is Taylor Swift's 2012 release 'Red' (Big Machine/BMLG), followed by One Direction's 'Take Me Home' (No. 3, Syco/Columbia), Mars' 'Unorthodox Jukebox' and Mumford & Sons' 'Babel' (No. 5, Gentleman of the Road/Glassnote).
Billboard's year-end Billboard 200 is based on chart performance during the chart year that began with last year's Dec. 1 chart and ended with the Nov. 30, 2013, tally.