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Blink-182 Take Off to No. 1

Band tops chart for the first time

June 20, 2001 12:00 AM ET

Blink-182's Take Off Your Pants and Jacket didn't manage to crack the 500k club like debuts byStaind, Tool, the Dave Matthews Band and Destiny's Child, but the SoCal punk rockers sold 349,846 copies of their new album, according to SoundScan. That was more than enough to displace Staind's Break the Cycle from the top of the album charts and earn Blink their first-ever Number One.

For Blink, the tireless promotion behind the new album paid off. Their figure, while smaller than other recent debuts, more than doubled the sales of their last album, the live The Mark, Tom and Travis Show, which scanned 128,000 in November. Other albums that arrived in record stores last week offered impressive numbers, made modest by expectations. Sugar Ray's self-titled fourth album splashed in at Number Six, but its lack of a hyper-bankable single left their new album with sales that barely scratched past the 100,000 mark.

Take Off Your Pants and Jacket and Sugar Ray were the only newcomers to the Top Ten, but other debuts peppered the charts. R&B vocal group Silk placed their Love Session at Number Twenty and rapper AZ landed at Number Twenty-three with Nine Lives. Scotland's Travis still haven't exactly made good on their next-big-thing tag, but The Invisible Band's sales of 38,536 (Number Thirty-nine) is evidence that Britpop fans do still exist on this side of the Atlantic.

While debut figures were a bit thin, sales did enjoy a healthy boost in general over the past week. Forty-nine albums in the Top 100 benefited from sales increases, as opposed to a paltry seven the previous week. A substantial number of the sales boosts came courtesy of Nashville's Fan Fair, as nine albums by new country artists in the Top 100 saw sales spikes. In the non-Stetson variety, the country/old-time music anomaly that is the O Brother Where Art Thou? soundtrack was the recipient of the week's biggest bump in sales action. Be it the DVD/VHS release of the film or the second live performance of the music (last week, at New York City's Carnegie Hall), the O Brother soundtrack soared from Number Forty-four a week ago to Number Sixteen, more than doubling its previous week tally by scanning 71,444 copies.

Elsewhere on the charts, Tool's Lateralus and Uncle Kracker's Double Wide slid past the 1 million copies-sold mark in their fifth and twenty-first week of release, respectively, while the Coyote Ugly soundtrack pushed past 2 million copies scanned.

Next week, the Stone Temple Pilots' Shangri-La Dee Da and Sisqo's Return of the Dragon look to be the two best bets for Top Ten debuts.

This week's Top Ten: Blink-182's Take Off Your Pants and Jacket (349,846 copies sold); Staind's Break the Cycle (221,179); Destiny's Child's Survivor (188,471); the soundtrack to Moulin Rouge (161,557); St. Lunatics' Free City (139,480); Sugar Ray's Sugar Ray (105,992); Now That's What I Call Music! 6 (88,711); Radiohead's Amnesiac (83,414); Tool's Lateralus (81,752); and Weezer's Weezer (78,403).

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Song Stories

“American Girl”

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers | 1976

It turns out that a single with "American" in its title--recorded on the Fourth of July during the nation's Bicentennial, no less--can actually sell better in Britain. Coupled with the Heartbreakers' flair for Byrds jangle and Animals hooks, though, is Tom Petty's native-Florida drawl that keeps this classic grounded at home. Petty dispelled rumors that the song was about a suicidal student, explaining that the inspiration came from when he was 25 and used to salute the highway traffic outside his apartment window. "It sounded like the ocean to me," he recalled. "That was my ocean. My Malibu. Where I heard the waves crash, but it was just the cars going by."

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