Easy-listening pop swept the board on the U.K. charts yesterday (March 10), as "Pop Idol" Will Young kept his crown on the singles survey and Columbia's "The Essential Barbra Streisand" climbed 4-1 on

Easy-listening pop swept the board on the U.K. charts yesterday (March 10), as "Pop Idol" Will Young kept his crown on the singles survey and Columbia's "The Essential Barbra Streisand" climbed 4-1 on the album tally. The latter is the U.S. superstar's most successful album in Britain in nine years and her first No. 1 in exactly 20 years, when "Love Songs" spent nine non-consecutive weeks at the top in March 1982.

Young was guaranteed a second week at the helm with "Evergreen"/"Anything Is Possible" (RCA) from early in the sales week, after the single (which sold a record-breaking 1.1 million copies in its first week) reportedly sold a further 100,000 in the first two days of its second week. Its eventual seven-day haul was close to 200,000 copies, which despite representing an 80% decline, still put Young well ahead of Shakira's "Whenever Wherever" (Epic), which held at No. 2.

The "Pop Idol" influence also loomed large on the U.K. singles survey in the form of Rik Waller, one of the losing finalists on the recent, hugely successful ITV series. Snapped up by EMI's Liberty label despite having to pull out of the series due to illness, his debut single -- a cover of the Dolly Parton-penned, Whitney Houston-popularized "I Will Always Love You" -- arrived at No. 6.

The other top-10 arrivals on the singles chart were "Oi" at No. 8 from Platinum 45 featuring More Fire Crew (three London garage MCs and a producer), and U.S. R&B group City High with "Caramel" featuring Eve (Interscope/Polydor) at No. 9.

Alanis Morissette's "Under Rug Swept" (Maverick/Warner Bros.) barely failed to repeat its chart-topping debut on The Billboard 200, entering at No. 2 in Britain, but had the major consolation of going straight to the top of Music & Media's European Top 100 Albums chart. Shakira's "Laundry Service" is at No. 2 on that chart, while "Whenever Wherever" is in a second week atop the Eurochart Hot 100 Singles tally.

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