For those who believe the life span of the CD has only a few more years left, label actions speak louder than digerati words. Not only are labels supporting the CD album, but they're still supporting the CD single and vinyl, even though Nielsen SoundScan's singles chart rarely has five titles selling more than 1,000 units each week.
As it is, this week's top seller is Jimi Hendrix's "Somewhere," which debuted with more than 3,000 copies and is, according to sources, a Walmart- and indie-store exclusive.
The Walmart B-side features a Band of Gypsys live cut of "Foxey Lady" recorded at New York's Fillmore East in 1970, while the indies' B-side is an unreleased Band of Gypsys studio version of "Power of Soul." The single is meant to serve as an advance for "People, Hell & Angels," a new Hendrix album of 12 never-before-released studio recordings due March 5.
The labels don't issue singles on every hot seller, but they do on some and when it makes sense. The same goes for retailers including Trans World, according to Ish Cuebas, VP and divisional merchandise manager for music and new media. For example, he says Adele's "Skyfall" was the last single the chain carried. The song is the No. 2 seller this week, having scanned more than 2,000 copies and nearly 60,000 to date.
Other top-selling physical singles include upcoming pop-rock band New Hollow's "Sick" (142,000 total units), "Boyfriend" (125,000) and "Airplanes" (79,000 units); Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" (69,000); and One Direction's "Live While We're Young" (42,000).