The "Now That's What I Call Music 37" compilation shakes up the top of the Billboard 200 as it debuts at No. 1 with 151,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. It's the first time the top slot has seen a figure larger than 100,000 since the tracking week that ended Dec. 26, 2010, when Taylor Swift's "Speak Now" sold 276,000.
The launch of "Now 37" is the biggest week for any "Now" album since "Now 31" started at No. 1 with 169,000 on the July 18, 2009, chart. Since then, we've seen more middling arrivals from the series. The 32nd through 36th volumes opened, respectively, with 102,000, 135,000, 88,000, 105,000 and 89,000.
Out of the 20 songs that "Now 37" contains, seven of them reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Eminem's "Love the Way You Lie" (featuring Rihanna), Bruno Mars' "Just the Way You Are," Katy Perry's "Firework," P!nk's "Raise Your Glass," Ke$ha's "We R Who We R," Rihanna's "Only Girl in the World" and Far*East Movement's "Like a G6" (featuring Cataracs and Dev).
Clearly, Valentine's Day gift shopping aided not only the "Now 37" collection's opening week, but likely helps many other albums see gains on the chart. Combine the holiday's impact on the tally with increases caused by the broadcast of the Grammy Awards on Feb. 13 -- the most-watched Grammys in 10 years -- and you end up with a rather sexy-looking list this week.
Racing up the chart nine spots to No. 2 is Mumford & Sons' "Sigh No More" with 49,000 (up 99%). It's a new chart high -- and the set's second-best sales week. Not bad for an album that came out exactly a year ago today (Feb. 16, 2010). The majority of the record's gain can be attributed to a surge in digital sales on Sunday night (Feb. 13), thanks to the quartet's performance on the Grammy Awards. The Glassnote Records act was also nominated for best new artist, which was presented during the broadcast.
The act that Mumford lost to for new artist, jazz singer/bassist Esperanza Spalding, sees her "Chamber Music Society" album return to No. 1 on our Contemporary Jazz Albums chart with a gain of 243%. The set sold 3,000 this past week, but that wasn't enough for it to re-enter the Billboard 200.
Clearly basking in the glow of his hit film "Never Say Never" -- in addition to multiple Grammy nominations and a performance slot on the show -- Justin Bieber has three rising albums in the chart's top 40. His "My World 2.0" jumps 17-3 (48,000; up 145%), "My Worlds Acoustic" vaults 47-10 (35,000; up 240%), and "My World" rises 100-39 (14,000; up 162%). Next week we'll see the Bieb's "Never Say Never: The Remixes" set, which was released on Monday, Feb. 14, bow on the chart.
Last week's No. 1, Nicki Minaj's "Pink Friday," falls to No. 4 with 47,000, despite a 3% gain in sales. We failed to mention this last week, but Minaj was the first female rapper to top the Billboard 200 since way back on Oct. 2, 1999, when Eve bowed atop the list with "Let There Be Eve."
P!nk's "Greatest Hits . . . So Far!!!" hits a new peak, climbing four spots to No. 5 with 41,000 (up 61%). Believe it or not, it's now the diva's second-highest-charting album. Of her five earlier albums, only her "Funhouse" set has landed higher, when it debuted and peaked at No. 2 (Nov. 15, 2008).
Though it's up by 24%, Mars' "Doo Wops & Hooligans" is pushed down two spots to No. 6 thanks to all the action ahead of it on the list. Eminem's "Recovery," which won best rap album at the Grammys, zips 10-7 (38,000; up 51%). Rihanna's "Loud" falls three to No. 8 with 37,000, but like Mars, is pushed back with a gain (up 24%). Jason Aldean's "My Kinda Party" is also squeezed, slipping 7-9 (35,000; up 30%).
Just outside the top 10, the "Grammy Nominees 2011" compilation rises 15-11 (33,000; up 52%) while the Black Eyed Peas' "The Beginning" takes a Super Bowl-fueled jump, moving 20-14 (31,000; up 62%). Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now," which took home the best country album trophy at the Grammys, climbs 23-17 (28,000; up 60%).
We'll see further gains next week on the charts, once a full week's worth of impact is felt from the Grammy Awards.
Moving to the Digital Songs chart, Lady Gaga is the big news, as her "Born This Way" debuts at No. 1 with 448,000 downloads. That's a staggering number, considering the song was only released to digital retailers on Friday, Feb. 11. Therefore its bow on the chart comes from only three days of sales, as the tracking week ended on Sunday night (Feb. 13).
The 448,000 start for born is the biggest debut sales week for any song by a woman and the third-largest among all acts. The two bigger debuts? Flo Rida's "Right Round" (636,000 on Feb. 28, 2009) and the Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow" (465,000 on April 18, 2009).
Perry's "Firework" rises 7-2 (170,000; up 40%) -- a gain aided by its tribute on last week's episode of "Glee" -- while P!nk's "F**kin' Perfect" holds at No. 3 (153,000; down 18%). The Black Eyed Peas' "The Time (Dirty Bit)" bumps 11-4 (153,000; up 46%), Wiz Khalifa's "Black and Yellow" falls 2-5 (153,000; down 23%), and Cee Lo Green's "F**k You (Forget You)" jumps 12-6 following its Grammy Awards performance (148,000; up 55%). Rihanna's "S&M" whips up the tally 20-7 (145,000; up a whopping 93%) while Mars' "Grenade" slides 5-8 (143,000; up 1%).
Two more debuts populate the top 10 on Digital Songs this week: Jay Sean's "Hit the Lights" (featuring Lil Wayne) opens at No. 9 (135,000), and Colbie Caillat's "I Do" bows at No. 10 (130,000).
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Feb. 13) totaled 6.4 million units, up 17% compared with the sum last week (5.5 million) and down 18% compared with the comparable sales week of 2010 (7.8 million). Year-to-date album sales stand at 32.8 million, down 15% compared with the same total at this point last year (38.5 million).
Digital track sales this past week totaled 26.8 million downloads, up 9% compared with last week (24.6 million) and up 6% stacked next to the comparable week of 2010 (25.2 million). Year-to-date track sales are at 159.7 million, up 4% compared with the same total at this point last year (153.3 million).
Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2010 when: Sade's "Soldier of Love" spent a second week at No. 1 (190,000; down 62%) while the list's top debut came in at No. 42 from Story of the Year's "Constant" (14,000).