Katy Perry and Fantasia Heading for Top of Billboard 200
Katy Perry and Fantasia Heading for Top of Billboard 200

Eminem's "Recovery" will likely relinquish the No. 1 position on the Billboard 200 albums chart next week -- after a total of seven weeks atop the list -- to Katy Perry's new "Teenage Dream." Released Tuesday (Aug. 24), industry prognosticators suggest that Perry's set will likely sell in the range of 170,000 to 200,000 by week's end on Sunday, August 29.

Perry's last album, 2008's "One of the Boys," debuted and peaked at No. 9 in July of that year with 47,000 sold in its premiere week according to Nielsen SoundScan. Its best sales frame came over Christmas week of 2008 when it shifted 63,000 -- but at a lower rung on the tally.


Hear Katy Perry's "Teenage Dream"

Beleaguered former "American Idol" champ Fantasia is looking for a big week too. Her third set, "Back To Me," is on track for a record-high No. 2 debut with a number somewhere in the range of 120,000 to 140,000. Her last effort, 2006's "Fantasia," bowed at No. 19 with 133,000 over the busy Christmas shopping week.

Perry's "Dream" has already launched a pair of top five hit singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart as its "California Gurls" was lodged at No. 1 for six weeks while the title track zips from No. 5 to No. 3 this week. She also issued three more pre-album-release singles with "Not Like the Movies," "Circle the Drain" and "E.T." Combined, the five songs have moved 4.5 million downloads in the U.S. according to SoundScan. Three of them reside on the Digital Songs chart this week as Nos. 2, 12 and 19.

However, Fantasia has yet to reach the Digital Songs chart with her album's current single, "Bittersweet" -- a top 10 hit on our airplay-driven Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. It has sold 41,000 downloads.

Fantasia Moves Forward Despite Personal Challenges

This scenario is similar to the starts seen by new albums and singles earlier this year from fellow leading R&B ladies Erykah Badu and Monica. The latter two both saw their most recent albums debut in the top 10 on the Billboard 200 -- with bows of 110,000 for "New Amerykah: Part Two" and 184,000 for "Still Standing" -- respectively.

Neither of those sets' lead singles -- despite their success on R&B radio -- sold many downloads. Badu's "Window Seat" (even with its controversial music video) sold 83,000 while peaking at No. 16 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. Meanwhile, Monica's "Everything To Me" has shifted 153,000 and spent seven weeks at No. 1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.

Aside from Perry and Fantasia, a number of other albums are in the hunt for a high debut on the Billboard 200. Look for entries from Usher's new "Versus," Little Big Town's "The Reason Why," Randy Rogers Band's "Burning the Day" and Never Shout Never's "Harmony."

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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