All Articles Tagged "album sales"
After a troubling last few weeks, which included being hospitalized in intensive care, Lil Wayne has some good news. According to Billboard, the rapper should earn the highest debut on next week’s Billboard 200 chart. His new album, “I Am Not a Human Being II,” is on course to arrive at the No. 2 spot. Industry observers say the set could sell around 190,000 to 210,000 copies by the end of the tracking week on Sunday, March 31.
Despite the great sales, however, Lil Wayne probably won’t knock the current No. 1 artist off the chart. As we reported, Justin Timberlake is back like he had never left the music scene. His album, The “20/20 Experience,” landed at No. 1 slot when it launched with 968,000 sales, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Lil Wayne has a chart-topping history. His last studio release, Tha Carter V, debuted at No. 1 with 964,000 in 2011. Prior to that, his first I Am Not a Human Being album launched at No. 2 with 110,000 in 2010 as a digital-only release. Then it jumped to No. 1 two weeks later (125,000) once the physical CD arrived in stores.
Lil Wayne will have some tough competition this time around. Not only against Timberlake, but he also be up against Blake Shelton, Depeche Mode, the Strokes, OneRepublic and Alan Jackson.
Are you going to buy Lil Wayne’s new CD?
An interesting observation is surfacing across Social Media this morning as people still haven’t quite gotten over Keyshia Cole’s catty remarks toward Michelle Williams during the Super Bowl Halft-time Show. Everyone’s been waiting for Michelle to react to the shade that’s been thrown her way — by a lot more people than Keysh by the way — and some think a post she uploaded to her Facebook page yesterday might be just that.
Yesterday we told you how underneath a pic of her goofing off with her Destiny’s Child girls, Michelle wrote:
It was an honor to share the stage with my sisters Kelly Rowland and Beyoncé on Sunday night. To all my ladies, we must learn to stick together and support each other. The incredible Alicia Keys and Jennifer Hudson did an amazing job too! Thank you to my sister Beyonce for sharing your moment with Destiny’s Child. Love you!
So much positivity, right? Meanwhile, back at the ratchet ranch, Keyshia Cole is still quite unapologetic about her statements. Along with the hashtag, #WhoCaresWhatUHatersfeel#IstillGotMyMoney, Keyshia posted a pic of a contract for a “guaranteed” $100K to do a show. Something tells me Michelle’s money is probably still quite a bit longer, but hey, get it how you live.
Keyshia also bragged that her album sales are up 24% this week, which makes me curious if that was part of the intent behind her Michelle shade. It should be pointed out, though, that Destiny’s Child’s album sales are up 348% — which is an additional 11,000 units. Digital song sales alone are up 286% (44,000 songs), and I won’t even get on Beyonce’s sales. Basically, they’re all winning and Keyshia…well…I’ll let you draw your own conclusions.
Nicki Minaj has a lot to gripe about lately. She just accused Steven Tyler of being a racist when he questioned her ability to select talent on American Idol. She questioned Barbara Walters (harshly) for not interviewing her after the Mariah Carey feud story broke. And now, she is saying her latest CD, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-Up, isn’t selling because two of the nation’s biggest retailers passed on the album.
The original CD, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, was released in April 2 and “was certified platinum after selling more than 1 million units in the U.S. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 253,000 units in its first week,” reports Billboard. The Re-Up was released on November 19 and has eight new songs. It is packaged with a DVD featuring the album’s music videos and 90 minutes of behind-the-scenes footage.
During an interview with New York radio station Power 105.1′s “The Breakfast Club,” Minaj blamed low sales of the new album on Walmart’s and Target’s failure to carry it. ”… [T]he stores basically said that the last few re-releases they had put out did not do well and they didn’t want to take a chance. So, Target and Walmart is not selling the album. Target is actually my biggest retailer — they’ve always been my biggest retailer. They’ve sold the most Nicki Minaj albums ever, so, thank you, Target. But I wish you could’ve sold this one,” said Minaj.
Best Buy, said Minaj, did take a limited number of units.
Having Target and Walmart behind your product can equal great sales. Taylor Swift used Target to sell the only deluxe version of her latest CD Red with additional audio content (three bonus songs and three remixes), reports Billboard. Target, Walmart and Best Buy also sold the standard version of Swift’s album, which sold a 1.208 million copies last week in the U.S. according to Nielsen SoundScan. “That’s more than any album has sold in a single week since 2002, when Eminem‘s The Eminem Show sold 1.322 million in its first full week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200,” reports Billboard.
Not having a presence on the shelves in Walmart and Target probably is hurting her. But, on the other hand, do her fans want to a spruced up CD with only a few new tracks? Or would they have preferred an entirely new album? Or maybe Nicki Minaj needs to give us all a break and take a holiday vacation. A day with no Nicki news would be a gift to all of us.
Numbers for Rihanna’s latest album, Talk That Talk, were released last week to chatter that the pop princess’s reign just might be letting up. The album debuting at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart with 197,040 units sold might be disappointing to some, but anyone forecasting the demise of Rihanna’s career is getting ahead of themselves.
The ubiquity of the Rihanna brand has nothing to do with album sales. She has released six albums in as many years, and none of them reached number one. That didn’t stop 11 of her singles from topping Billboard’s Hot 100. Constant visibility has been essential to the pop diva’s success.
Between blogs providing daily updates of her wardrobe choices and radio stations flooding the airwaves with her new material, the pop diva has been hard to escape since her career making single “Umbrella” dropped in 2007. Yet somehow Rihanna manages to keep her target demographic begging for more. Though enigmatic on the surface, Rihanna employs an audience engagement strategy that can be replicated by any brand.
Sakita Holley, a lifestyle brand strategist at House of Success, identifies audience, consistency, and relevance as the keys to creating engaging content. “People that aren’t fans of Rihanna’s may feel that she’s over-saturating the airwaves, but her fans are perfectly fine with her output. The key is for brands to really focus on their audience,” she said.
Last week, HITS Daily Double projected that Rihanna’s sixth studio album, “Talk That Talk,” would sell between 180,000 and 200,000 copies in its first week; sales records show that prediction was dead on.
Coming in at the #3 spot this week, “Talk That Talk” sold 197,000 copies. The ranking certainly doesn’t make the album a flop, but many continue to question why Rihanna can’t pull in a #1 record, particularly with the success of her singles, most recently, “We Found Love.” The reported trouble Rihanna has had selling concert tickets also doesn’t bid well for her staying power in the industry, despite the media frenzy that continues to swarm around the young star. It seems Rihanna’s controversies carry more weight than her craft.
Did you pick up a copy of “Talk That Talk?” Why do you think the singer hasn’t been able to secure a no. 1 record during her six-year career?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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(Forbes) — The numbers for Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter IV came in this morning, and they were staggering: 940,000 copies sold in the first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan, placing the album firmly atop the Billboard 200 chart. Tha Carter IV was Lil Wayne’s third No. 1 debut; remarkably, its first-week sales total was more than twice that of Jay-Z and Kanye West’sWatch The Throne, which moved 436,000 units when it hit stores last month. So how did the diminutive Young Money/Cash Money star—who finished behind Jay-Z and Kanye on our annual Hip-Hop Cash Kings list—manage to outsell a pair of heavyweights? “I think just the hard work, all the years and everything we’ve been through as a unit,” says Cash Money Records chief Bryan “Birdman” Williams, who was deeply involved in the album’s production and promotion. “It’s our season, that’s just how it goes … [Wayne] is the best doing it, and everybody is just starting to see it. I don’t think any artist in the world is going to be as big as he’s going to be.”
Rap and hip hop fans can argue over who beats who lyrically between Jay-Z, Kanye West and Lil Wayne, but Lil Wayne holds a clear win on album sales this time around. His newest album “Tha Carter IV” sold a record setting 300,000 downloads on iTunes in its first four days, according to MTV News. This tops the first week sales for the Jay-Z and Kanye West “Watch the Throne” collaboration.
Lil Wayne, aka Weezy, released his album digitally directly after the 2011 VMAs last week. The Hollywood Report predicts he is set to bring in 850,000 sales this week, earning him the second biggest first-week sales of 2011, right behind Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way,” which gained 1.3 million in its June debut, although considering Lady Gaga sold her album at $1, it’s no surprise she sold more albums. Nielsen SoundScan also expects “Tha Carter IV” to come in at #1 on the Billboard 200 chart next week.
The numbers show that although Lil Wayne’s album leaked five days before its debut, the fans are still willing to spend to get his album. The rapper admitted after the VMAs that he was even glad it leaked as it allowed fans to get a sneak peek.
“It just means people want to hear it,” he told MTV News.
Cash Money CEO Birdman and Lil Wayne’s mentor had complete faith in Lil Wayne’s appeal. He promoted the album in the two weeks before its release and predicted it would sell just a million copies in the first week, but Birdman was no stranger to Lil Wayne’s achievements in the past. High album sales are no new feat for the New Orleans rapper.
“Tha Carter III” sold 1.01 million in its first week in June 2008. The combined numbers for “Tha Carter VI’s” physical and digital sales will make for the biggest first week for a hip hop album since its predecessor “Tha Carter III.”
In addition to Lil Wayne’s record breaking sales after the VMAs, other performing acts also saw a boost in record sales. Chris Brown saw a 43 percent increase for his album “F.A.M.E,” Beyonce’s 4” jumped up 87 percent and Adele’s 21 saw an 88 percent gain.
By Charlotte Young
As anticipated, Jay-Z and Kanye West’s “Watch the Throne” collaboration snatched the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200 albums chart this week. It sold 436,000 copies according to Nielsen SoundScan, and is the second largest sales week of the year for an album, falling short only to Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way.”
According to Billboard.com, there are those in the industry who predicted “Watch the Throne” would command even higher sales numbers, reaching a total number of more than 500,000. Lady Gaga’s No. 1 “Born This Way” saw sales of 1.1 million.
Some say that the below 500,000 album is evidence that two hip hop greats don’t necessarily equal one gotta have it album. Still others assert that the super duo’s collaboration was hard to predict, due to its “staggered release.”
From Aug. 8-11, “Watch the Throne” was exclusively available through iTunes. For the Apple based music manager, “Watch the Throne” pummeled their previous one-week sales record, selling almost 290,000 digital copies. On Friday Aug. 12, it was available to all digital and physical retailers, but SoundScan’s tracking week ended on Sunday, Aug. 14. With this unusual marketing strategy, it was difficult to compare the album’s sales by the traditional model.
Those who really want to see how well the album sales did must be patient. The results that roll in from the second week combine both physical and digital sales which will provide a clearer number.
Despite the difficulty in obtaining exact numbers, nothing but the top spot could have ever been expected from Jay-Z or West.
This is Jay-Z’s twelfth No. 1 spot and West’s fifth. Jay-Z also takes the throne in longevity. He’s the solo act with the most No. 1 albums in history, second only to The Beatles who claim 19 No. 1s.
Jay-Z has also been part of two other collaborations that most recently topped the Billboard 200: Linkin Park’s “Collision Course” and R. Kelly’s “Unfinished Business,” which both debuted in 2004.
His last solo album, The Blueprint 3, came in at No. 1 with 476,000 in 2009. West’s last album, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” in 2010, also took home the No. 1 spot.
by Evette Brown
As two of hip-hop’s elite superstars, Jay-Z and Kanye West are used to being heavily criticized for their decisions. The hip-hop heavyweights are both respectively infamous for different reasons, but having come together to create an album and initiate a nationwide tour might be entering them into a battle that neither one is prepared to wage.
After months of anticipation, their collaborative debut Watch the Throne is set to be released to all nationwide retailers on August 12th. Here’s where the conflict begins.
According to Billboard, rather than releasing the album to all retailers on August 12th, the duo and their record label are following in the footsteps of Jay-Z’s superstar wife, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, and others by offering iTunes and Best Buy separate preferential windows to sell the album exclusively. From August 8th to August 12th, iTunes will be the only retailer with permission to sell the album. From August 12th until August 24th, Best Buy will be the exclusive retailer with the deluxe edition of the CD.
Even before the official release date, iTunes is sweetening the deal for fans by offering them the opportunity to pre-order the album. With this pre-order comes an exclusive download of “Otis,” Jay-Z and Kanye’s blockbuster single. Other retailers are not admitting defeat in this battle without a fight against the artists, Island Def Jam, and Universal Music Group.
58 independent retailers, including The Music Experience, Newbury Comics, Amoeba Music, Looney Tunes, and Cactus Records penned an open letter to the two superstars, expressing their disappointment for not allowing them to be included in the first week sales of the album and urging them to rectify this tense situation.
According to Forbes, these independent retailers’ response presents a double standard for the MCs. When Beyoncé exclusively released the deluxe edition of 4 to Target, she received zero criticism and the same lack of backlash applied to Lady Gaga and Amazon’s deal which allowed Born This Way to be sold for $0.99 during an exclusive window.
However, the question is, do these independent retailers have valid reasons for protesting against these exclusive windows? Statistics point towards yes.
For superstar artists such as Kanye West and Jay-Z who are guaranteed to sells hundreds of thousands of copies in the first week, the deluxe edition of an album can account from 50 percent to 70 percent of the first two-week sales. Since Best Buy is allowed this two-week window, it guarantees that the retailer will be given an advantage against the competition, including independent record stores.
Based on first-week sales for The Blueprint III and My Dark, Twisted Fantasy, sources are predicting that Watch the Throne will have first-week sales of 400,000 units, with an even split of 200,000 between digital and physical releases. Experts are projecting that the deluxe version will account for 50 percent of digital sales, which indicates that “iTunes and Best Buy will account for 300,000 units. Between the two exclusive windows, 75% of the demand is expected to be satisfied within 10 days.”
Eric Levin, owner of Criminal Records and head of the Alliance of Independent Media Stores, disagrees with Jay-Z and Kanye West’s decision to allow these windows. “A two-week window will be disastrous for music retailers,” he told Forbes.
Carl Mello, Newbury Comics head of purchasing succinctly agrees with Levin. “The main element in all of these exclusives is that label executives forget what is convenient for the customer,” he told Forbes. “Making the album available in certain versions at certain times is not the most friendly thing for the customer, for whom it will feel like a game of hide and seek. At first, due to the iTunes exclusive, when Newbury Comic customers come into our stores looking for the album, we won’t be able to sell it to them. Then, when we have it beginning on August 12, we won’t be able to sell them the deluxe version.”
Some independent retailers are refusing to sell the album after the windows period has expired and are vowing not to carry Jay-Z or Kanye Wests’ albums in the future. Could this decision be disastrous for the artists in the long run?
Trans World Vice President of music and new media, IshCuebas, believes so. “Look at what happened to the Beyonce album ’4,’ when Target got the exclusive version of the album,” he told Billboard. “After the first two weeks, sales collapsed because the rest of retail wouldn’t support the album.”
The winner of this battle will not be determined until the numbers are released on Nielsen Soundscan in two weeks.
Herman Cain is a leader who is not afraid to wear many hats, no matter how contradictory. CEO? Check. Presidential candidate? You got it. Now he can officially add gospel singer to the mix, as his self-expressive devotional LP, “Sunday Morning,” has just been released. No, this is not an official debut sanctioned by Cain’s political campaign. The web site DraftCain.org is behind the release of the tracks, which are described as being “years old.” While Cain and his cohorts are not connected to the latest promotion of his album, this has not stopped his staffers from taking to Twitter to big it up. Talking Points Memo reports:
The Republican presidential candidate’s gospel album “Sunday Morning” went online today and according to Cain spokesman Ellen Carmichael on Twitter, his staff “may or may not be ‘testifying’ in the office right now, listening to boss’s music.” Carmichael told TPM that an independent pro-Cain website, DraftCain.org posted the years-old album and that the official campaign had nothing to do with its re-emergence.
Even if he is not officially involved, Cain can always use this event to kick up his campaign a notch. He can write and sing a new campaign song: “Cain is Abel.” Get it? Herman can scat vocalize his responses during future GOP debates. That would be hot, and help him reach new voting blocs. There are just too many possibilities for a man of Cain’s multifarious talents.
Plus, it’s good that he has a career to fall back on, if this whole being president thing does not work out. I don’t know about you, but I would buy another album from this man, especially if said album existed explicitly because Cain failed to become president. But don’t take my word for it. Please listen and judge Herman Cain, gospel singer, for yourself: