Though obviously the big sales drivers on the Billboard 200 this week are the Feb. 8 Grammy Awards and shopping encouraged by the Feb. 14 Valentine's Day holiday, a familiar face returns to No. 1 -- Taylor Swift . . . The chart's top two debuts come from India.Arie and Lily Allen . . . A new record is set for the biggest sales week for a digital song as Flo Rida's "Right Round" bows with 636,000 . . . In Progress Reports we have updates on Swift's embrace at top 40 radio and how LeAnn Rimes is burning up the dance floor, plus new rock act Dead Confederate is making chart waves.
The No. 1 slot on the Billboard 200 houses a familiar face this week as Taylor Swift returns to the top with "Fearless." The album has now earned nine nonconsecutive weeks atop the list, matching the number of frames Usher's "Confessions" racked up in 2004. The last set to spend more time at the top was Santana's "Supernatural," with 12 weeks at No. 1 in 1999 and 2000.
The one-two punch of CBS' Feb. 8 Grammy Awards broadcast, combined with Valentine's Day-inspired purchases, results in a lot of albums showing big sales increases on the Billboard 200. The highest-ranked beneficiary is album of the year winner "Raising Sand," which rises from No. 69 to No. 2 with 77,000 (up 715%). The Robert Plant / Alison Krauss set originally debuted and peaked at No. 2 in late 2007 with 112,000.
Coldplay's "Viva La Vida" (whose title track won song of the year) zips from No. 31 to No. 8 with 62,000 (up 271%) while Adele, whose two-trophy win included best new artist, climbs from No. 27 to No. 10 with her "19" album (57,000; up 218%). The "Grammy Nominees 2009" compilation also posts an increase, climbing from No. 12 to No. 9 (61,000; up 114%).
Two-time Grammy winner India.Arie is the week's Hot Shot Debut, as her "Testimony: Vol. 2 - Love & Politics" arrives at No. 3 with 76,000. The singer/songwriter's last release, 2006's "Testimony: Vol. 1 - Life & Relationship," started at No. 1 with 161,000. The week's second-highest debut comes in the form of Lily Allen's sophomore album, "It's Not Me, It's You," which starts with 70,000 at No. 5. The British singer's debut release, 2007's "Alright, Still . . . ," bowed at No. 20 with 34,000.
Flo Rida breaks his own record for a digital song's biggest sales week as "Right Round" debuts at No. 1 on the Hot Digital Songs chart with 636,000 downloads. The total smashes the mark he set with "Low" (467,000) in the week after Christmas 2007. The tally for "Round" also surpasses the opening-week download record set just last week by "Crack a Bottle" from Eminem, 50 Cent and Dr. Dre (418,000).
|The Billboard 200
Sales data provided and compiled from Nielsen SoundScan
|*1||4||TAYLOR SWIFT Fearless (Big Machine )||11||6||NICKELBACK Dark Horse (Roadrunner )|
|*2||69||ROBERT PLANT / ALISON KRAUSS Raising Sand (Rounder )||12||5||BEYONCE I Am...Sasha Fierce (Music World / Columbia / Sony Music)|
|*3||New||INDIA.ARIE Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics (Soulbird / Universal Republic / UMRG)||*13||New||THE LONELY ISLAND Incredibad (Universal Republic / UMRG)|
|4||1||THE FRAY The Fray (Epic / Sony Music)||14||8||JAMIE FOXX Intuition (J / RMG)|
|*5||New||LILY ALLEN It's Not Me, It's You (Capitol )||*15||New||RED Innocence & Instinct (Essential )|
|6||2||BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN Working On A Dream (Columbia / Sony Music)||16||9||KANYE WEST 808s & Heartbreak (Roc-A-Fella / Def Jam / IDJMG)|
|*7||New||BOBBY VALENTINO The Rebirth (Blu Kolla Dreams )||*17||13||JASON MRAZ We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. (Atlantic / AG)|
|*8||31||COLDPLAY Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends (Capitol )||*18||19||T.I. Paper Trail (Grand Hustle / Atlantic / AG)|
|*9||12||VARIOUS ARTISTS Grammy Nominees 2009 (Grammy / Rhino)||19||10||KEYSHIA COLE A Different Me (Imani / Geffen / IGA)|
|*10||27||ADELE 19 (XL / Columbia / Sony Music)||*20||18||SOUNDTRACK Twilight (Summit / Chop Shop / Atlantic / AG)|
|* indicates titles with greatest sales gains this week|
Album units, current chart week: 8.6 million units
UP 16.8% from last week's charts: 7.3 million units
DOWN 12.6% from same week, 2008: 9.8 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" held at No. 1 with 180,000 in its second week (down 52% in sales), holding off the surging "Back to Black" by Amy Winehouse, which zoomed from No. 24 to No. 2 with 115,000 after her multiple Grammy Award wins (up 368%).
The No. 10 album this week, Adele's "19" (XL/Columbia/Sony Music), sold 57,000.
The No. 10 album for the same week of 2008, the soundtrack to "Step Up 2: The Streets" (Atlantic/AG), sold 45,000.
Average total of the No. 10 album for the same week of the year during the past 10 years (2000-2009): 79,111.
Taylor Swift nabs her first No. 1 on the Mainstream Top 40 radio airplay tally as "Love Story" moves to the top in its 15th chart week. This marks the first time a song has reached No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart and the Mainstream Top 40 chart since the latter chart debuted in 1992.
Speaking of country music, LeAnn Rimes becomes the first artist to earn No. 1 singles on Hot Country Songs and the Hot Dance Club Play charts (albeit with different singles). She hits No. 1 on the Club Play tally with "What I Cannot Change," thanks to dance mixes of the song promoted to clubs. The song, originally found in its ballad form on Rimes' 2007 "Family" album, was reworked by remixer/producers Kaskade, Jody Den Broeder, Scotty K and Bronleewe & Bose for the dancefloor. Rimes has hit the Club Play chart four times previously, getting as high as No. 8 with last year's "Nothin' Better to Do" (another "Family" hit).
Georgia band Dead Confederate takes a bow on the Modern Rock radio airplay chart at No. 39 with "The Rat." The Razor & Tie quintet attended high school together in Augusta, Ga., before eventually finding its home base in Athens, Ga. The group's debut full-length album, "Wrecking Ball," was released last September and has moved 8,000 copies.
A LOOK AHEAD
Among the titles released this week, due on next week's charts: Morrissey's "Years of Refusal," Annie Lennox's "The Annie Lennox Collection," Charlie Wilson's "Uncle Charlie," And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead's "The Century of Self" and M. Ward's "Hold Time."
Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2008 when: 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).