Taylor Swift Remains Atop Billboard 200
Taylor Swift's "Fearless" claims a 10th non-consecutive week atop The Billboard 200, a feat unmatched by any album since Santana's "Supernatural" collected 12 weeks at No. 1 in 1999 and 2000. Only eight other albums by solo female artists have earned 10 weeks or more at No. 1. The Big Machine set moved 62,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, a 32% drop in sales from last week's sum.
The chart's highest debut comes from Charlie Wilson, whose "Uncle Charlie" (Jive) starts at No. 2 with 58,000. The R&B singer's last set, 2005's "Charlie, Last Name Wilson," debuted and peaked at No. 10 with an opening week of 71,000.
The Fray's self-titled Epic album, which topped the chart two weeks ago, rebounds 4-3 despite a 29% sales decline to 53,000.
Much like the week after Christmas, many titles experience sales drops and shift around the top tier after an active week of post-Grammys and Valentine's Day shopping. For example, climbing back into the top tier 11-4 is Nickelback's Roadrunner effort "Dark Horse" with 43,000 (-23%). Beyonce's "I Am... Sasha Fierce" (Music World/Columbia) follows suit, ascending 12-5 with 41,000 (-25%). Jamie Foxx's "Intuition" (J) leaps 14-6 with 33,000 (-19%) and India.Arie's Universal Republic set "Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics" takes a 57% hit to 32,000, slipping 3-7.
Selling 32,000 (-11%), Kanye West's "808s & Heartbreak" (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam) climbs 16-8. Grammy Award-winning "Raising Sand" (Rounder) by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss falls 2-9, also with 32,000 (-58%). Lady GaGa earns a new chart peak this week as "The Fame" (IGA) moves up 26-10 with 32,000 (+11%).
Morrissey's "Years of Refusal," his first for Lost Highway in conjunction with his own Attack imprint, debuts at No. 11. It shares the same position as his other high water mark, which came with the No. 11 peak of 2004's "You Are the Quarry." His last studio album, 2006's "Ringleader of the Tormentors," entered and topped out at No. 27.
Singer/songwriter M. Ward scores his best charting solo album yet with "Hold Time" (Merge) at No. 31 with 19,000. His previous "Post-War" only reached No. 146 in 2006, though his collaboration with Zooey Deschanel on She & Him's "Volume One" last year scored No. 71 upon entry.
Other debuts this week include Annie Lennox's CD/DVD set "Annie Lennox Collection" (Sony) at No. 34 with 16,000 and the double-disc indie-rock benefit compilation "Dark Was the Night" (4AD/Beggars) at No. 49 with 13,000.
At 7.41 million units, sales are down 13.3% compared to last week and down by 7% compared to the same week in 2008.