Sean “P. Diddy” Combs leads a charge of five top-6 debuts to blast to No. 1 on The Billboard 200 with his Bad Boy/Arista compilation “We Invented the Remix.” The album sold 256,000 units in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, fending off the third effort from fellow rapper Cam’ron, whose “Come Home With Me” (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam) sold 226,000 units and settles in at No. 2.
However, Cam’ron out-muscles the artist formerly known as Puff Daddy in urban markets, grabbing the No. 1 crown on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums count. It’s not a real surprise, since P. Diddy has been wooing the crossover crowd the past few weeks, appearing on everything from “Live With Regis & Kelly” to Howard Stern’s national morning radio show.
“We Invented the Remix” easily squashes the first album released under the P. Diddy moniker, “The Saga Continues,” which bowed at No. 2 last July on sales of 186,000 units. His current single, “I Need a Girl” featuring Usher & Loon, holds at No. 2 on Billboard’s Hot 100, while the video is in heavy rotation on both MTV and BET.
Cam’ron manages to score a career best, as his previous biggest sales week was 107,000 copies with the debut of his first set, “Confessions of Fire” (Sony), in 1998. The new album’s “Oh Boy” jumps 6-4 on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks roundup and 22-14 on the Hot 100.
Weezer opens at No. 3 on The Billboard 200 with 152,000 units for “Maladroit” (Geffen/Interscope). It didn’t quite reach the numbers posted by the band’s last self-titled release, the so-called “Green Album,” which entered at No. 4 last May on sales of 215,000 copies. One theory: “Maladroit” tracks have been circulating for months on the Internet, possibly cutting into sales. The single “Dope Nose” dips 12-20 on Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks chart this week.
Moby’s “18” (V2) spins to No. 4 on The Billboard 200 with 126,000 units. His last effort, “Play,” started slowly, opening at No. 145 in 1999 but eventually peaked at No. 38 and, in its best week, moved 58,000 units. The heavily licensed “Play” stayed on The Billboard 200 for almost two years and has sold 2.4 million units to date in the U.S. The new album is off to a strong start, but first single “We Are All Made of Stars” has not yet appeared on the Hot 100.
With the top-heavy debuts on The Billboard 200, Musiq’s “Juslisen” (Def Soul) tumbled 55% from its opening week to 116,000 units, and slips 1-5. The album is No. 3 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums tally, and the single “halfcrazy” jumps 2-4 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart.
Right behind Musiq on The Billboard 200 is the latest from veteran Canadian power trio Rush. The group’s “Vapor Trails” (Anthem/Atlantic) enters at No. 6 on sales of 108,000 units, nearly matching the opening week performance of 1996’s “Test for Echo,” which moved 115,000 copies and debuted at No. 5. The single “One Little Victory” is No. 13 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.
A bit further down on The Billboard 200, Van Morrison jumps in at No. 25, earning the second-highest peak of his career with “Down the Road” (Exile/Universal), bested only by 1975’s “Saint Dominic’s Preview,” which topped out at No. 15. Other newcomers include the sophomore effort from Ruff Endz, “Someone To Love You” (Epic), at No. 27; underground rock outfit the Get Up Kids’ “On a Wire” (Heroes & Villains/Vagrant) at a career-high No. 57; and hard rockers 3rd Strike with “Lost Angel” (Hollywood) at No. 72.
Elsewhere, the Sony Classical soundtrack to “Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones” rebounds 46-21 on a 38% sales gain spurred by the movie’s theatrical opening last week. N*E*R*D*’s Virgin debut “In Search Of…” is starting to show some life, jumping 97-66, on a 25% sales increase.
Kenny Chesney’s “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems” (BNA) leads Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart for a fourth straight week, while Alan Jackson’s “Drive (for Daddy Gene)” tops Billboard’s Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart for a second week in a row.
Ashanti’s “Foolish” holds steady at No. 1 on the Hot 100 for a seventh straight week, and leads the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks count for a 10th. Her self-titled Murder Inc./Def Jam debut is showing little signs of slowing down, maintaining a steady No. 7 on The Billboard 200 with sales of 96,000 units.
The fastest-growing track at radio is Eminem’s “Without Me,” skipping 9-6 after breaching the top-10 last week. On urban radio, the cut isn’t performing quite as strongly, moving 37-27 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart. As previously reported, the release date for the rapper’s new Interscope album, “The Eminem Show,” has been pushed forward from June 4 to Tuesday (May 28) due to pervasive piracy.
The top debut on the Hot 100 is John Mayer’s “No Such Thing” at No. 65. Other new entries include Tweet’s “Call Me” at No. 67, Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated” at No. 68, Kellie Coffey’s “When You Lie Next to Me” at No. 73, and Ashanti’s “Happy” at No. 77.
Unwritten Law tops Billboard’s Modern Rock Tracks tally for the fourth straight week with “Seein’ Red,” while Godsmack’s “I Stand Alone” begins its third week in a row at No. 1 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. Swedish buzz band the Hives top Billboard’s Heatseekers’ chart with “Veni Vidi Vicious” (Epitaph/Warner Bros.) as its single, “Hate To Say I Told You So” hops 36-33 on the Modern Rock Tracks survey.