Clarkson Becomes A No. 1 'Idol' Again

"Thankful," the debut album from "American Idol" first season winner Kelly Clarkson, outsold new releases from 50 Cent, Fleetwood Mac, and Darryl Worley to bow on top of The Billboard 200. The RCA set

"Thankful," the debut album from "American Idol" first season winner Kelly Clarkson, outsold new releases from 50 Cent, Fleetwood Mac, and Darryl Worley to bow on top of The Billboard 200. The RCA set sold 297,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. While it's Clarkson's first album, the singer is no stranger to the summit of Billboard's charts, as her single "A Moment Like This" topped the Hot 100 last year, and has sold 617,000 copies to date.

Many had wondered if too much time had passed between the finale of the first "American Idol" season and the release of "Thankful" for Clarkson to capitalize on its success. But a steady stream of projects, including the forthcoming "Idol" feature film "From Justin to Kelly," and appearances on the reality series/talent contest's popular second season have kept Clarkson in the spotlight.

50 Cent's CD/DVD hybrid "The New Breed" (Shady/Interscope) lands at No. 2 on sales of 246,000 copies, a far cry from the 872,000 copies the rapper's "Get Rich Or Die Tryin'" sold upon its debut earlier this year. Of course, a number of 50 Cent's fans already have the DVD, since it is the same as the one that was packaged with the first 500,000 copies of "Get Rich," and the accompanying audio CD only features four songs.

Fleetwood Mac's "Say You Will" (Warner Bros.), the group's first album of new material since 1987 to feature both Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks, enters The Billboard 200 at No. 3 with sales of 218,000 copies. While the Mac's 1997 live album "The Dance" entered the chart at No. 1, it sold 199,000 copies, in its first week. To date, "The Dance" has moved 4.2 million copies.

Darryl Worley's third DreamWorks Nashville album, "Have You Forgotten?," sold 214,000 copies to arrive at No. 4 on The Billboard 200. Worley's pro-war single of the same name has topped Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks roundup for the past month, and the album was rush-released to capitalize on its success. The 16-track set features a few new songs mixed with cuts from Worley's 2000 debut, "Hard Rain Don't Last," and last year's "I Miss My Friend," which entered the chart at No. 21 in August with sales of 42,000 copies.

The new album chart entries force 50 Cent's "Get Rich or Die Tryin'" down 3-5, even though it saw a 29% sales boost to 206,000 copies. Sales of Linkin Park's "Meteora" (Warner Bros.) were up 3% to 192,400 copies, but the album slips 2-6.

Similarly, the 12th edition of the NOW That's What I Call Music!" compilation series (Universal/EMI/Zomba/Sony) experienced a 34% sales burst to 192,200 copies, but dips 4-7. Warner Bros.' "The Very Best of Cher" falls 7-10, even though sales were up slightly more than 2% to 122,000 copies. Bucking the trend, Norah Jones' "Come Away With Me" (Blue Note/Capitol) is able to turn a 22% sales boost to 143,000 copies into an upward move, as the title jumps one slot to No. 8 in its 60th week on the chart.

Jimmy Buffett's "Meet Me in Margaritaville: The Ultimate Collection" (Mailboat/MCA) parks at No. 9 on first week sales of 127,000 copies. Buffett's "Far Side of the World" entered The Billboard 200 last April at No. 5 with 78,500 copies.

Pete Yorn's has the best sales week of his career with his "Day I Forgot" (Columbia), which moved 73,000 copies to land the singer/songwriter's second album at No. 18. His 2001 album "musicforthemorningafter" has sold 520,000 copies to date.

Other entries on The Billboard 200 this week include Jessica Andrews' "Now" (DreamWorks) at No. 34 with sales of 42,000 copies, and "The Best of Toby Keith: The Millennium Collection" (Universal) at No. 45 with sales of 32,000 copies.

Sales of last week's No. 1, Godsmack's "Faceless" (Universal), slipped 59% in its sophomore week to 110,000 copies, causing a tumble to No. 13. Lisa Marie Presley's "To Whom It May Concern" (Capitol) also falls out of the top-10, dropping 5-14 in its second week, the victim of a 40% sales drop to 85,000 copies.