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On the Charts: Jay-Z's "Gangster" Number One, Eagles Number Two

November 14, 2007 11:50 AM ET

The Big News: As predicted, Rolling Stone cover star Jay-Z's American Gangster stormed to the top of the Billboard albums chart, selling just forty-one copies shy of the 425,000 he was expected to sell. Jay-Z is now tied with Elvis Presley for having the second-most Number One albums with ten. Last week's chart-topper, the Eagles' not-so-exclusive Long Road Out of Eden, dropped down to second place with 359,261. Country icon Garth Brooks debuted at three with his Ultimate Hits, while rising R&B star Chris Brown's Exclusive entered at four with 294,498. Carrie Underwood's Carnival Ride held tight at the fifth spot with 120,771.

Debuts: While the blockbuster names gathered at the top of the chart, Angels & Airwaves' I-Empire debuted strong at nine. Taylor Swift arrived at eight, Wisin Y Yandel at fourteen, Little Big Town at twenty-four and the 21,047 people who bought the wrong American Gangster (the soundtrack, not the Jay-Z album) helped that LP chart at thirty-six. Van Morrison's Still On Top: Greatest Hits charted at forty-eight. The indie kids who actually have money to spend helped Sigur Ros' Hvarf/Heim debut at fifty-eight with 14,528 copies.

Last Week's Heroes: While the Eagles' nest atop the charts suffered a minor blow, Britney Spears' Blackout tumbled far further. Brit's new one dropped from two to seven thanks to a 70 percent sales decrease. The Backstreet Boys' Unbreakable sunk worse, from seven to forty. Last week's number four, Avenged Sevenfold, was hit hard too, falling twenty-five spots. Next week, prepare for major debut-week numbers from Alicia Keys and Celine Dion.

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Song Stories

“Madame George”

Van Morrison | 1968

One of the first stream-of-consciousness epics to make it onto a Van Morrison record, his drawn-out farewell to the eccentric "Madame George" lasted nearly 10 minutes, combining ingredients from folk, jazz and classical music. The character that gave the song its title provoked speculation that it was about a drag queen, though Morrison denied this in Rolling Stone. "If you see it as a male or a female or whatever, it's your trip," he remarked. "I see it as a ... a Swiss cheese sandwich. Something like that."

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