New album's big first week hints at radio and touring breakthroughs

Country star Eric Church's "The Outsiders" proves to be the ultimate insider this week as it tops the Billboard 200 with a resounding 288,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The tally is the highest opening frame since Beyonce's self-titled album bowed in mid-December with sales of 617,000. Even more impressive, it's nearly double the 145,000 copies that Church's last album, 2011's "Chief," sold in its first week.

Subscribe to billboard biz to continue reading this article and thousands more. subscribers get:
  • 24/7 coverage of every genre and sector of the business with over 150 exclusive charts
  • Bulletin: Breaking stories, chart info and analysis sent directly to your inbox every weekday
  • Billboard Magazine iPad Edition: An enhanced version of the magazine with video, photo galleries and playable charts
  • Archives: A rich history of articles and exclusive charts

Join now or Log In