Creed's 'Weathered' Wraps The Year At No. 1

Creed's "Weathered" (Wind-Up) begins 2002 by extending its reign at No. 1 on The Billboard 200 to six weeks, the longest consecutive run at the top since the Beatles' "1" (Capitol). The set sold 398,0

Creed's "Weathered" (Wind-Up) begins 2002 by extending its reign at No. 1 on The Billboard 200 to six weeks, the longest consecutive run at the top since the Beatles' "1" (Capitol). The set sold 398,000 units, according to SoundScan, in a week of sagging post-Christmas sales. With every album in the top-10 posting a decrease, Linkin Park's "[Hybrid Theory]" (Warner Bros.) is able to rebound 7-2 after selling 263,000 units, making it the best-selling album released in 2001 at 4.8 million units.

In fact, no album released in 2001 sold more than 5 million copies, compared to last year when seven topped that mark, led by 'N Sync's "No Strings Attached" (Jive) with 9.9 million. Regardless, "[Hybrid Theory]" reaches its peak position despite a 31% drop in sales on a relatively quiet chart week.

The multi-labeled "NOW That's What I Call Music! Vol. 8" compilation dips 2-3, Garth Brooks' "Scarecrow" (Capitol) falls 3-14, and Britney Spears' "Britney" (Jive) slides 4-12. Meanwhile a couple of rap albums bounce back into the top-10. Ludacris' "Word of Mouf" (Disturbing tha Peace/Def Jam South) soars 16-4, despite a 16% sales drop, and Ja Rule's "Pain Is Love" (Murder Inc./Def Jam) cruises 20-8. Last week's top debut, Nas' "Stillmatic" (Columbia), slips 8-9.

"Stillmatic," however, continues to rule urban markets. On Billboard's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums tally, Nas' set holds for a second-straight week at No. 1, while "Word of Mouf" swaps places with Lil Bow Wow's "Doggy Bag" (So So Def/Columbia), moving up one slot to No. 2.

Further down The Billboard 200, however, there is some notable movement, with a number of releases performing steady enough to take advantage of big post-holiday dives by higher profile sets. Outkast's "Big Boi & Dre Present ... Outkast" (Arista) rises 37-21, Puddle of Mudd's "Come Clean" (Flawless/Geffen) climbs 36-23, and Busta Ryhmes' "Genesis" (Flip/Mode) manages to rocket 44-26. The Interscope soundtrack to "Ali" is the chart's greatest-gainer, fighting its way up 62 positions to land at No. 81.

Nickelback's "How You Remind Me" is No. 1 for fourth week in a row on The Billboard Hot 100, which is also relatively calm this week. Enya's "Only Time" is the chart's fastest-growing track at radio, but has to stay put at No. 23. The top debut comes courtesy of Tim McGraw, whose "The Cowboy in Me" gallops to No. 65. Martina McBride also debuts with "Blessed" at No. 71.

Ja Rule's "Always on Time" featuring Ashanti leads for a second-straight week on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks tally, where Jagged Edge's "Where the Party At" featuring Nelly soars 41-29 due to increased airplay.

Garth Brooks' "Scarecrow" is still tops in country markets, leading Billboard's Top Country Albums count for a seventh-straight week, once again fending off the venerable Mercury soundtrack to "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" As for country singles, Alan Jackson's "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)" holds at No. 1 for a third-straight week on Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks tally.

On Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks tally, Linkin Park's "In the End" begins its fourth week at No. 1, and Creed's "My Sacrifice" is in front of Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks count for the fifth week in a row.

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