Just days after Chris Brown used his Twitter to lash out at retailers he accused of "blackballing" his latest album Graffiti, the singer deleted his Mechanical Dummy account. "I wanna thank all my fans for their support," Brown wrote in his final tweet yesterday. "I love yall. Goodbye!" As Rolling Stone reported, Brown's ire initially focused on a Walmart store in Wallingford, Connecticut, but Brown expanded his rant to make a blanket statement about how the industry views him after he pleaded guilty for assaulting his then-girlfriend Rihanna.
It seems like Brown somehow stumbled upon the one Walmart that was actually sold out of their Graffiti stock, as reps for several big retailers tell Billboard.biz that Brown's disc is actually "overstocked" at most stores, with Graffiti well underselling the 150,000-175,000 copies it was expected to move in its debut week. One large chain indicated the album is selling at only 40 percent of initial expectations.
Brown's last album, 2007's Exclusive, sold 294,000 copies in its debut week, which will likely more than double Graffiti's first week sales. Jive had shipped 400,000 copies of Graffiti, but this Wednesday's charts will likely only reveal sales in the low 100,000s. "Not only am I carrying it, I am over-carrying it, because it isn't selling," the head of purchasing at a large chain told Billboard.biz. "I wish I could return it."
Brown's Mechanical Dummy Website remains active with its Kanye West-like posts about fashion and artwork, but the Twitter that bears the same name reads the message, "Sorry, that page doesn't exist!" In the past few months, Brown has frequently tweeted and deleted posts, often after he'd written something that could be construed as a regret or remembrance about his relationship with Rihanna. But Brown had never before pulled a Reznor and eliminated his account. But the Nine Inch Nails frontman taught us a lesson: a Twitter page never really dies, it just goes into hibernation, so it's likely only a matter of time before Brown resurfaces to share his 140-character thoughts again.
• Chris Brown Claims Stores Are "Blackballing" New Disc "Graffiti"
• Chris Brown Laments Missed Michael Jackson Tribute in Vibe
• Chris Brown's Post-Plea Prospects: Will R&B Star's Career Survive?
To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here
MUSIC 9 Classic Devo Videos
OLYMPICS 18 Epic Opening Ceremonies