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Shock the Shocker

Foxy Brown bumps Silkk the Shocker out of No. 1 with "Chyna Girl"

February 3, 1999 12:00 AM ET

Pint-sized rapper Foxy Brown, riding the wave of her new single "Hot Spot," has found her way to the hottest spot -- she's got the new No. 1 album in the country. For the week ending Jan. 31, her album Chyna Doll sold 173,000 copies, according to SoundScan. She easily ousted Silkk the Shocker from the No. 1 spot. The volatile hardcore rapper, who allegedly attacked the editor of Vibe late last year on a New York City sidewalk, follows up her hugely successful 1996 debut, Il Na Na, in style. As usual, she's joined on record by close friend Jay-Z.

Elsewhere on the chart, skeptics who thought teen singer Britney Spears was a flavor of the week after she recently shocked the industry by debuting at No. 1, need to look elsewhere. Last week, Spears climbed from No. 3 to No 2, and sales of her album, ...Baby One More Time, have increased every week the album has been in stores.

Down a bit further on the chart, ageless wonder Cher is quietly assembling one of '99's most improbable comebacks, as her three-month-old album, Believe, jumps from No. 31 to No. 21. (Cher's single by the same name -- the best selling single in the U.K. last year -- is currently barreling toward the Top Ten.) Interestingly, she's done it with almost no help from the video channels. Her "Believe" clip is barely among VH1's forty most-played, and it's nowhere to be seen on MTV. Look for Cher's impressive sales pace to continue next week as she cashes in on her recent facetime at the Superbowl, where she sang the national anthem in front of 100 million U.S. television viewers.

From the top, it was Brown's Chyna Doll, followed by Spears' ...Baby One More Time (selling 150,000 copies); Silkk the Shocker's Made Man (116,000); the Offspring's Americana (109,000); Lauryn Hill's The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (98,000); Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds' Live at Luther College (96,000); 2Pac Shakur's Greatest Hits (88,000); 'N Sync (86,000); The Dixie Chicks' Wide Open Spaces (84,000); and DMX's Flesh of My Flesh Blood of My Blood(80,000).

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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