Fred Bronson reports on the latest chart feats of Shania Twain, LL Cool J, Jill Scott, Usher and Alicia Keys.
IT TAKES 'TWO': Shania Twain has the third-highest debut of her career on Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart , as "Party for Two" (Mercury), a duet with Billy Currington, opens at No. 39.
The only Twain titles to debut higher are "Love Gets Me Every Time," which started at No. 29 the week of Oct. 4, 1997, and "I'm Gonna Getcha Good!" which debuted at No. 24 the week of Oct. 19, 2002.
"Party for Two" is a new track from Twain's forthcoming "Greatest Hits collection. There is an alternate version of the track, recorded with Sugar Ray's Mark McGrath, the new co-host of the TV series "Extra." That means the track could soon be credited on the charts to Shania Twain with Billy Currington or Mark McGrath.
DEFINED: The 11th LL Cool J album to chart on The Billboard 200 enters at No. 4 and instantly becomes the fourth highest-charting album of the rapper's career.
"The Definition" debuts almost two years after LL Cool J's last album, "10," entered and peaked at No. 2. His only other albums to chart higher than "The Definition" are "Bigger and Deffer" (No. 3 in 1987) and "G.O.A.T. Featuring James T. Smith: The Greatest of All Time," which spent one week at No. 1 in 2000.
"The Definition" continues the longest streak of top 10 albums in LL Cool J's career. He's now had four top 10 albums in a row, starting with "Phenomenon," No. 7 in 1997.
'HUMAN' LEAGUE: Her first album asked the question "Who Is Jill Scott?" We must know the answer by now, because the neo-soul singer has the highest debut and peak position of her career. Her third chart entry, "Beautifully Human: Words and Sounds Vol. 2" (Hidden Beach), opens at No. 3 on The Billboard 200.
"Who Is" peaked at No. 17 in March 2001, while the live album "Experience: Jill Scott 826+" reached No. 38 in December 2001.
JUST THE FOUR OF US: With "My Boo" (LaFace) racing towards the top of Billboard's Hot 100 (it's up 29-18 in its second week), Usher could make more chart news if this duet with Alicia Keys reaches No. 1. Since he's already had three chart-toppers in 2004 ("Yeah!" "Burn" and "Confessions Part II"), "My Boo" would be his fourth No. 1 of the calendar year.
The last act to have four No. 1 hits on the Hot 100 during the same calendar year is the Jackson 5. The quintet's first four chart entries ("I Want You Back," "ABC," "The Love You Save" and "I'll Be There") all advanced to No. 1 in 1970.