Stoned, But Not Dethroned: Elvis Remains On Top

It was like the 1960s all over again as Elvis Presley battled the Rolling Stones for the top spot on The Billboard 200. When the smoke cleared, Elvis had a slight edge, holding at No. 1 for a second w

It was like the 1960s all over again as Elvis Presley battled the Rolling Stones for the top spot on The Billboard 200. When the smoke cleared, Elvis had a slight edge, holding at No. 1 for a second week with "ELV1S 30 #1 Hits" (RCA) despite a 33% drop in U.S. sales to 337,000 units, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The Stones' collection of hits, "Forty Licks" (Abkco/Virgin), was close behind in its debut week, selling 310,000 units. Presley is also No. 1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums tally.

The No. 2 debut for the Stones ties their highest position on The Billboard 200 since "Voodoo Lounge" entered at No. 2 in 1994, but with a much smaller sales total of 154,000 units. In fact, this is by far the Stones' biggest sales week since the SoundScan era began in 1991, besting "Bridges to Babylon," which sold 160,000 units in 1997. The Stones' last No. 1 album was "Tattoo You" in 1981.

The Stones lead four top-10 debuts, and right behind the elder rockers at No. 3 is rapper Xzibit, who scores the first top-10 album of his career with "Man vs. Machine" (Loud/Columbia), which sold 156,000 copies. Faring better in urban markets, Xzibit blasts straight to the top of Billboard's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums tally, knocking India.Arie down to No. 3. His last set, "Restless," entered at No. 14 on The Billboard 200, but sold 205,000 units in its debut week during the 2000 Christmas season. First radio cut "Multiply" is at No. 40 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart.

"American Idol: Greatest Moments" (RCA), a compilation of cover songs by all 10 finalists from the TV series, debuts at No. 4 on sales of 146,000 units. It also includes both sides of Kelly Clarkson's No. 1-selling single, "A Moment Like This," which is backed with the track "Before Your Love."

Sales of Clarkson's single dropped 56% to 65,000 units, for a to-date total of just under 450,000 units. The weekly number will continue to dwindle as the total shipment of about 700,000 units runs out in stores. Although "A Moment Like This" remains at on top of Billboard's Hot 100 Singles Sales chart, it surrenders the No. 1 slot on the Hot 100 to Nelly's "Dilemma," which is back on top for an eighth, non-consecutive week. "Dilemma" has been at No. 1 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks count for nine weeks in a row.

Punk-leaning rock band Good Charlotte has seen huge growth in its fan base in the two years since its self-titled album spent a mere two weeks on The Billboard 200 in 2000, peaking at a lowly No. 185. The band's new set, "The Young and the Hopeless" (Daylight/Epic), blasts onto the chart at No. 7 on sales of 117,000 units.

Since Good Charlotte has yet to break the top-10 on either of Billboard's rock airplay charts, the group can thank MTV for its newfound success. The video for the first single, "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous," has been a favorite on the music channel's "Total Request Live," and two of the band's members have been hosting the station's "All Things Rock." The single "Lifestyles" is up three positions to No. 17 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

Country singer LeAnn Rimes arrives just outside the top-10 of The Billboard 200 at No. 12 with "Twisted Angel." The Curb set sold 66,000 units and also lands at No. 3 on the Top Country Albums roundup. Rimes' "I Need You" shot to No. 10 on The Billboard 200 last February.

Other notable newcomers on The Billboard 200 include jazz vocalist Diana Krall's "Live in Paris" (Verve) at No. 18, Philadelphia-based R&B act Floetry's "Floetic" (DreamWorks) at No. 19, Mark Knopfler's "The Ragpicker's Dream" (Warner Bros.) at No. 38, and Mercyme's "SpokenFor" (Ino/M20 Communications/Word/Warner Bros.) at No. 41.

Elsewhere on the album tally, Incubus' "Morning View" (Immortal/Epic) rockets 139-58, and the Strokes' "Is This It" (RCA) soars 156-72. This marks the highest rank for the former since mid-June and the latter since early March. Both titles received a sales boost from a reissue package that includes a bonus DVD.

Madonna returns to the Hot 100 with "Die Another Day," which makes a smashing entry at No. 41. The cut is from the upcoming Warner Bros. soundtrack to the James Bond film of the same name. The supporting video was just added to MTV last week. Other new arrivals on the Hot 100 include Nirvana's long-awaited "You Know You're Right" at No. 55, Oakenfold's "Starry Eyed Surprise" featuring Shifty Shellshock at No. 63, Shania Twain's "I'm Gonna Getcha Good!" at No. 65, and matchbox twenty's "Disease" at No. 71.

The fastest-growing track at retail on the Hot 100 is Sean Paul's "Gimme the Light," which jumps 34-18. The single also makes its way into the top-10 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks roundup, taking an 11-5 leap. The cut is from his upcoming album "Dutty Rock," due Nov. 12 from Black Shadow/2 Hard.

The Hot 100's fastest-growing track at radio is Jennifer Lopez's "Jenny From the Block" featuring Jadakiss & Styles, which flies 67-38. The track glides 66-55 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart.

System Of A Down's "Aerials" begins its third-straight week atop Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks tally, while Nirvana's "You Know You're Right" blasts to 22-2 in its second week on the chart. Over on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks count, Nickelback's "Never Again" logs a third week at No. 1.

While Elvis reigns over the Top Country Albums chart again this week, on the singles side, Keith Urban makes a move to the top. His track "Somebody Like You" swaps spots with Diamond Rio's "Beautiful Mess" to become the new No. 1. Twain has that chart's top debut with "I'm Gonna Getcha Good!" at No. 24.


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