The soundtrack to "Slumdog Millionaire" bites into the Billboard 200 as the film's eight Academy Award wins on Feb. 22 instantly impact the chart . . . Taylor Swift's "Fearless" earns a 10th week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 . . . Charlie Wilson and Morrissey are the chart's top debuts, with both arriving in the top 20 . . . In Progress Reports we've got updates on Britney Spears' new No. 1 single, another chart-topper for country king Toby Keith and a new (but old) hit for Pearl Jam.
The eight Academy Awards netted by "Slumdog Millionaire," including best picture, on Sunday, Feb. 22, pays off immediately on the Billboard 200, as the movie's soundtrack vaults from No. 48 to No. 22 with 21,000 (a 38% gain). With digital sales becoming an increasingly significant chunk of the overall market, it's no surprise that "Slumdog" also rises from No. 15 to No. 3 on Top Digital Albums (12,000; up 109%). Today's (Feb. 25) sales charts reflect the Nielsen SoundScan week that ended at the close of business Feb. 22, so it's likely that most of the gain for "Slumdog" came from purchases made during ABC's broadcast of the Oscars or immediately after the show concluded. The album will rise again next week, likely with a very significant gain, as the full impact of the Oscar show will be felt on that chart.
How long can Taylor Swift and her "Fearless" album keep clinging to No. 1 on the Billboard 200? This week it racks up its 10th nonconsecutive week atop the list, a feat unmatched by any album since Santana's "Supernatural," collected 12 weeks at No. 1 in 1999 and 2000. Only eight other albums by solo female artists have earned 10 weeks or longer at No. 1. The last to do so was "Jagged Little Pill" by Alanis Morissette, which strung together 12 weeks at No. 1 in 1995 and 1996.
And no, the 62,000 copies that "Fearless" moved this week is not the lowest sum for a No. 1 album. There have been three weeks where the top-selling album sold less. Those happened twice in early 2008 and once in January of 2007.
The Billboard 200's highest debut is by Charlie Wilson, whose "Uncle Charlie" arrives at No. 2 with 58,000. His last set, 2005's "Charlie, Last Name Wilson," debuted and peaked at No. 10 with an opening week of 71,000 . . . Morrissey starts at No. 11 with "Years of Refusal" (31,000). That matches the singer's previous high-water mark, when 2004's "You Are the Quarry" debuted and peaked in the same position.
The Billboard 200 readjusts after last week's chart was thrown into a tizzy following the Grammy Awards and Valentine's Day shopping. Thus, Nickelback's "Dark Horse" gallops back into the top 10 (No. 4 with 43,000), as does Beyonce's "I Am . . . Sasha Fierce" (No. 5 with 41,000), Jamie Foxx's "Intuition" (No. 6 with 33,000), Kanye West's "808s & Heartbreak" (No. 8 with 32,000) and Lady GaGa's "The Fame" (No. 10 with 32,000). "The Fame" reaches a new chart peak this week, climbing into the top 10 for the first time.
|The Billboard 200
Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
|1||1||TAYLOR SWIFT Fearless (Big Machine )||*11||New||MORRISSEY Years Of Refusal (Attack / Lost Highway)|
|*2||New||CHARLIE WILSON Uncle Charlie (Jive / JLG)||12||18||T.I. Paper Trail (Grand Hustle / Atlantic / AG)|
|3||4||THE FRAY The Fray (Epic / Sony Music)||13||6||BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN Working On A Dream (Columbia / Sony Music)|
|4||11||NICKELBACK Dark Horse (Roadrunner )||14||8||COLDPLAY Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends (Capitol )|
|5||12||BEYONCE I Am...Sasha Fierce (Music World / Columbia / Sony Music)||15||19||KEYSHIA COLE A Different Me (Imani / Geffen / IGA)|
|6||14||JAMIE FOXX Intuition (J / RMG)||16||5||LILY ALLEN It's Not Me, It's You (Capitol )|
|7||3||INDIA.ARIE Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics (Soulbird / Universal Republic / UMRG)||17||20||SOUNDTRACK Twilight (Summit / Chop Shop / Atlantic / AG)|
|8||16||KANYE WEST 808s & Heartbreak (Roc-A-Fella / Def Jam / IDJMG)||18||23||PINK Funhouse (LaFace / JLG)|
|9||2||ROBERT PLANT / ALISON KRAUSS Raising Sand (Rounder )||19||10||ADELE 19 (XL / Columbia / Sony Music)|
|*10||26||LADY GAGA The Fame (Streamline / KonLive / Cherrytree / Interscope / IGA)||20||9||VARIOUS ARTISTS Grammy Nominees 2009 (Grammy / Rhino)|
|* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week|
Album units, current chart week: 7.4 million units
DOWN 15.4% from last week's charts: 8.6 million units
DOWN 7% from same week, 2008: 8 million units
This week: No albums sell more than 100,000 copies.
This week last year on the Billboard 200: Jack Johnson's "Sleep Through the Static" spent a third week at No. 1 (105,000; down 42%) while "Kidz Bop 13" bowed at No. 4 (49,000) and Chris Cagle's "My Life's Been a Country Song" started at No. 8 (37,000).
The No. 100 album this week, Linkin Park's "Minutes to Midnight" (Machine Shop/Warner Bros.), sold 6,000.
The No. 100 album for the same week of 2008, Finger Eleven's "Them Vs. You Vs. Me" (Wind-up), sold 10,000.
Average total of the No. 100 album for the same week of the year during the past 10 years (2000-2009): 11,872.
Britney Spears moves into a tie for second-most No. 1s in the Mainstream Top 40 chart's 16-year history, as "Circus" becomes her fifth chart-topper with a 3-1 rise. She's tied with Beyonce, Avril Lavigne, Pink and Justin Timberlake, and they all trail Mariah Carey's six career leaders. "Circus" also grants Spears her first set of back-to-back No. 1s -- "Womanizer" led for two weeks in December. She previously reigned with "Baby One More Time" (1999), "Oops! I Did It Again" (2000) and "Toxic" (2004).
Toby Keith collects his 18th No. 1 on Hot Country Songs, as "God Love Her" rises 2-1. The song extends his record for the most chart-topping tracks since 2000 with 15, ahead of Kenny Chesney's 13 No. 1s. With the ascension, Keith completes his first set of consecutive No. 1s since he launched his Show Dog Nashville label in 2005. His previous single, "She Never Cried in Front of Me," reached the top in October.
Pearl Jam previews the March 24 reissue of its 1991 debut album, "Ten," as the previously unreleased "Brother" debuts on Modern Rock at No. 18. It is one of six new bonus tracks from the forthcoming revamp of "Ten." The album originally spawned four Modern Rock chart hits: "Alive," "Even Flow," "Jeremy" and "Black." The new "Brother" is the group's 33rd Modern Rock entry, second only to U2's 36.
A LOOK AHEAD
Among the titles released this week, due on next week's charts: Jonas Brothers' soundtrack to their "3D Concert Experience" film, Lamb of God's "Wrath," Van Morrison's "Astral Weeks Live at the Hollywood Bowl," Chris Issak's "Mr. Lucky" and Jake Owen's "Easy Does It."
Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2008 when: Janet Jackson's "Discipline" debuted at No. 1 with 181,000 while Erykah Badu's "New Amerykah Part One" started in the runner-up slot with 124,000. The previous week's topper, Jack Johnson's "Sleep Through the Static," fell to No. 3 with 92,000 (down 13%).