"American Idol" contestant Chris Daughtry's debut RCA album, released under his last name, ascends to No. 1 in its ninth week on The Billboard 200 by selling 65,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan. His margin over the No. 2 album, Music World's "Dreamgirls" soundtrack, is the slimmest ever between the top two titles on this chart, at about 130 copies.
The Daughtry album debuted at No. 2 in November and his not been lower than No. 11 since. Sales increased 30% over last week, likely due to last week's premiere of the new season of "Idol" and the continued strong performance of the single "It's Not Over" on the top 40 and Hot AC charts.
But it was another dire week at music retail, the third in a row that the No. 1 Billboard 200 album has shifted less than 100,000 copies. The last time this happened was in May and June of 1991, shortly after Billboard began using SoundScan sales data on the chart.
Disney's "Jump In!" soundtrack rises to No. 3 after debuting at No. 5 last week. The album sold 57,000 copies, a 17% increase. Corinne Bailey Rae's self-titled Capitol debut reaches a new peak of No. 4 in its 31st chart week, climbing 28 spots on a 155% sales boost to 55,000. The British artist performed last week on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" and is up for three Grammys next month.
Akon's "Konvicted" (SRC/Universal) slides 2-5 with a 6.7% sales decline to 52,000, while Justin Timberlake's "FutureSex/LoveSounds" (Jive) falls 3-6 on a 16% decline to 42,000. The hits compilation "NOW 23" remains at No. 7 (-5%, 36,000), Nickelback's "All the Right Reasons" (Roadrunner) inches up 10-8 on a barely detectable sales drop to 35,000 and Carrie Underwood's "Some Hearts" (RCA) jumps back into the top 10 with a 15-9 advance (+1.5%, 33,000).
The top 10 is rounded out by Beyonce's "B'Day," which falls 6-10 (-19%, 33,000). Diana Ross, who has inspired Beyonce's work with Destiny's Child and as a solo artist, enjoys the top debut on the chart this week with her Manhattan album "I Love You" at No. 32. The set sold 21,000 copies, good enough for Ross' best Billboard 200 ranking since 1984's "Swept Away" peaked at No. 26.
Frank Sinatra's "Romance: Songs From the Heart" debuts at No. 36 with 19,000, his 10th album to chart since 2000. At No. 46, Al Green's "The Definitive Greatest Hits" opens at No. 46 with 16,000, good enough for his highest-charting album since 1975, when "Al Green Is Love" peaked at No. 28.
Veteran soft rock outfit America is back on The Billboard 200 with "Here & Now" (Burgundy), which was produced by Fountains Of Wayne's Adam Schlesinger and ex-Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha. The album debuted at No. 52 with 14,000, America's best showing on this chart since "View From the Ground" went to No. 41 in 1982.
Album sales are down .05% from last week's total and 14.7% from the same week a year ago at 8.09 million units. Sales so far this year are down 15% compared to 2006 at 25.6 million units.