Luke Bryan & Toby Keith Dominate Country Charts

Luke Bryan

As reported yesterday, country star Luke Bryan nabs his second No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 with "Crash My Party." The album bows atop the list with nearly 528,000 sold in the week ending Sunday, Aug. 18, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

"Crash My Party" follows his previous chart-topper, "Spring Break . . . Here to Party," which opened at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 dated March 23.

The new album logs the third-largest sales week of 2013, surpassed only by the debuts of Justin Timberlake's "The 20/20 Experience" (968,000) and Jay Z's "Magna Carta . . . Holy Grail" (slightly more than 528,000).

The Billboard Cover Story: Luke Bryan, Country Charmer

"Crash My Party" also claims the largest week for an album by a male country artist since 2004. Tim McGraw was the last male country artist to sell more copies in a week, when his "Live Like You Were Dying" bowed with 766,000 in November 2004.

Bryan is miles ahead of the No. 2 album this week, K. Michelle's "Rebellious Soul." The set opens in the runner-up slot with 72,000 and also lands at No. 1 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and Top R&B Albums charts.

The artist (familiar to fans of VH1's "Love and Hip-Hop: Atlanta") nets the highest debut on the Billboard 200 for a female R&B singer's first album since March 2011. That month, Marsha Ambrosius' "Late Nights & Early Mornings" also debuted at No. 2. (Ambrosius is formerly of the duo Floetry, which charted three albums before Ambrosius went solo.)

After we leave the top two rungs on the Billboard 200, the rest of the top 10 is fairly uneventful. The "Now 47" album slips 2-3 (52,000; down 27%), and Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" descends 3-4 (48,000; down 26%). Last week's No. 1, the Civil Wars' self-titled album, falls to No. 5 with 39,000 (down 66%).

Jay Z's "Magna Carta . . . Holy Grail" falls 4-6 (37,000; down 23%), the "Teen Beach Movie" soundtrack moves 6-7 (33,000; down 13%), and Florida Georgia Line's "Here's to the Good Times" rises 10-8 (31,000; up 19%). Imagine Dragons' "Night Visions" (7-9 with 27,000; down 26%) and Five Finger Death Punch's "The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell" (8-10 with 22,000; down 38%) close out the top 10.

Over on the Digital Songs chart, Katy Perry's "Roar" bows at No. 1 with a whopping 557,000 downloads. The song finished the week with a larger-than-expected sales sum. On Sunday, Aug. 18, forecasters had suggested the song was on course to sell 525,000-550,000 downloads by the close of that week's business (Aug. 18). That projection was increased from an original forecast of 400,000, made on the song’s release date, Aug. 12.

The debut for “Roar” marks the sixth-largest sales week for a digital song ever, Perry's own best sales week and the biggest for her label, Capitol Records.

The only other larger weeks were logged on the chart by Flo Rida's "Right Round" (a debut with 636,000 in 2009), Ke$ha's "TiK ToK" (610,000; 2009), Bruno Mars' "Grenade" (559,000; 2010) and Taylor Swift's "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" (a debut with 623,000; 2012) and "I Knew You Were Trouble" (582,000; 2012).

But wait, there's more: "Roar" also logs the third-biggest debut for a digital song. Only "Right Round" (636,000) and "We Are Never . . ." (623,000) started with bigger numbers.

"Roar" is the lead single from Perry's "Prism" album, which is due for release on Oct. 22.

A total of three debuts arrive in the top 10 of the Digital Songs chart this week, including Perry's "Roar." And all three of them start in the top five—the first time that's happened since last October. (On the Digital Songs chart dated Oct. 20, 2012, One Direction, Swift and Adele bowed at Nos. 1-3, respectively, with "Live While We're Young," "Red" and "Skyfall.")

Last week's No. 1 Digital Song, Thicke's "Blurred Lines" (featuring. T.I. and Pharrell), falls to No. 2 with 291,000 (down 16%).

At No. 3 is the second debut of the week: Lady Gaga arrives with "Applause." It sold 218,000 downloads in its opening frame and marks her 13th top 10 hit on the Digital Songs chart. It's her best sales week since "The Edge of Glory" debuted with 266,000 downloads at No. 2 on the May 28, 2011, chart.

"Applause" is the first single from Gaga's "ArtPop" album, which arrives Nov. 11.

A step below Gaga is Jay Z's "Holy Grail," featuring Timberlake, which slips two rungs to No. 4 with 178,000 (though it’s up by 7%).

Bryan captures the third top 10 debut, as his "That's My Kind of Night" enters at No. 5 with 164,000. It's the new radio-promoted single from his album "Crash My Party."

Miley Cyrus' "We Can't Stop" falls 3-6 (148,000; down 6%) while Avicii's "Wake Me Up!" is pushed backwards 6-7 despite a 22% gain to 138,000 downloads.

Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive" tumbles 4-8 (121,000; down 9%) while Lana Del Rey & Cedric Gervais' "Summertime Sadness" is steady at No. 9 (117,000; up 15%). Lorde's No. 1 Alternative airplay hit "Royals" surges into the top 10 (15-10) with 107,000 (up 39%).
 
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Aug. 18) totaled 5.1 million units, up 8% compared with the sum last week (4.7 million) and down 3% compared with the comparable sales week of 2012 (5.3 million). Year-to-date album sales stand at 176.1 million, down 6% compared with the same total at this point last year (187.5 million).
    
Digital track sales this past week totaled 23.1 million downloads, up 4% compared with last week (22.1 million) and down 7% stacked next to the comparable week of 2012 (24.8 million). Year-to-date track sales are at 843.3 million, down 3% compared with the same total at this point last year (870.2 million).

Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2012 when: Trey Songz's "Chapter V" bowed at No. 1 with 135,000 while the previous week's leader, 2 Chainz's "Based On a T.R.U. Story," slipped to No. 2 with 48,000.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

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