Taylor Swift’s 1989 easily holds on to the No. 1 slot on the Billboard 200 chart, spending a seventh nonconsecutive week atop the list. The album sold 430,000 equivalent units (up 15 percent) in the week ending Dec. 28, according to Nielsen Music. (The Billboard 200 chart measures multi-metric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums [TEA] and streaming equivalent albums [SEA].)
Swift has now spent a total of 31 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with her four No. 1 albums. Among women, only Whitney Houston has racked up more No. 1 weeks, with 46. Houston notched four No. 1 albums as well: her self-titled debut (14 weeks at No. 1), Whitney (11 weeks), The Bodyguard soundtrack (20) and I Look To You (one).
Swift’s 1989 also leads the Top Album Sales chart for a seventh frame, selling 326,000 copies (down 2 percent).
1989 is selling like no album has in the past 10 years. It has sold more than 200,000 copies in each of its first nine weeks on sale — a feat not managed since the spring of 2004. Usher’s Confessions was the last album to sell as consistent, moving more than 200,000 in each of its first nine frames (ending with the sales week of May 23, 2004).
Confessions was also the last album to sell 200,000 in at least nine weeks, period. In total, that mega-selling album logged 12 nonconsecutive weeks of 200,000-plus sales.
No albums debut in the Billboard 200’s new top 10, and there are just two new entries on the entire chart. Fabolous’ The Young OG Project is the list’s highest bow, at No. 12 (71,000 units).
As for the rest of the new top 10, Nicki Minaj’s The Pinkprint holds at No. 2 with 156,000 units (down 36 percent), of which 105,000 are pure album sales (down 47 percent). Pentatonix’s That’s Christmas To Me is steady at No. 3 with just over 131,000 units (down 39 percent), powered mostly by album sales (121,000; down 41 percent).
One Direction’s Four climbs 7-4 with 131,000 units (up 30 percent), with 100,000 of that pure album sales (up 14 percent). The group benefits from its NBC TV special (simply titled One Direction: The TV Special) that aired on Dec. 23
Sam Smith’s In the Lonely Hour rises 6-5 with 121,000 units (up 19 percent). Just 79,000 of that figure were album sales (up 1 percent), as the rest of his equivalent unit sum is made up of TEA and SEA. J. Cole’s former No. 1, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, slips 4-6 with 120,000 units (down 11 percent). It sold 104,000 copies (down 12 percent).
Ed Sheeran’s x rises one rung to No. 7 with 113,000 units (up 13 percent), with nearly half of that figure owed to TEA and SEA. The album sold 63,000 copies (up 3 percent) during the week. Hozier’s self-titled album returns to the top 10 (14-8) with 88,000 units (up 30 percent). Just 43 percent of the album’s equivalent units were traditional album sales (38,000; up 11 percent).
The Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack also bounds back into the top 10 (16-9) with 80,000 units (up 30 percent) — all from album sales. Ariana Grande’s My Everything is another returning effort to the top 10, as it zips 20-10 with 79,000 units (up 68 percent). Album sales make up only 41 percent of its unit sum for the week (33,000; up 13 percent).