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50 Cent Tops 800,000

“Get Rich” posts second-best opening week in hip-hop history

Eminem just can’t miss. His Shady Records signee 50 Cent sold an
eye-popping 872,000 copies of Get Rich or Die Tryin’,
according to SoundScan, in its first week of sales — an
abbreviated one no less. The album enjoyed monstrous press buzz,
and 50 Cent received a more-than-helpful boost by his inclusion on
the 8 Mile soundtrack. Still, the number is even more
startling for what it could have been. Rather than being released
on a Tuesday, Get Rich was rushed out last Thursday, which
shorted the album two sales days.

Further, Get Rich managed to make a mockery of vets in
the hip-hop genre. The figure is the highest by a rapper not named
Eminem, besting the highest marks put up by reliable rap chieftans
Jay-Z (The Dynasty: Roc la Familia sold 560,000 copies in
2000) and DMX (And Then There Was X moved 698,000 in
1999). Even more mainstream/less-hardcore rap fare stands in its
shadow: Nelly’s Nellyville sold 714,000 in its first week,
and No Way Out, back when Diddy was Daddy, did

Get Rich‘s sales figure could also be read as the
highest ever for a debut: The rapper recorded a debut for Columbia
four years ago that was shelved — after he took nine bullets in a
drive-by shooting — and never released, and material from some of
his underground mix tapes was compiled and released as Guess
Who’s Back
last year.

Speaking of surviving a shooting, Kid Rock’s Cocky was
a certain dead duck that continues to enjoy a second life. The
record had a 29,000 copy sales spike (up to 104,000) and worked its
way to Number Three, its highest position since being released
sixty-four weeks ago. Another quiet giant was awakened with LL Cool
J’s 10. The album sat nearly flatlined a week ago at
Number Eighty-four with sales of 11,000. It could be a starring
role in the upcoming film, Deliver Us From Eva, but it’s
more likely that some J.Lo pixie dust rubbed off on the rap vet
from his appearance on her hit single “All I Have.” Regardless of
cause, the record zipped up to Number Nine with sales of

While 50 Cent was the week’s big money man, there were a few
other debuts that fared well. Country music minted a new star with
Blake Shelton. The singer’s second album, The Dreamer,
arrived at Number Eight with sales of 77,000. Other debuts included
the Daredevil soundtrack, which features a new tune by
Drowning Pool with Rob Zombie (Number Eleven, 59,000 copies sold),
Alabama’s In the Mood (Number Fifteen, 51,000), Lionel
Richie’s Definitive Collection (Number Twenty-one, 43,000)
and the All-American Rejects self-titled debut (Number Twenty-five,

Elsewhere, fans of teenage Russian lesbians have begun to snap
up copies of T.A.T.U.’s 200 KM/H in the Wrong Lane, which
now sits at Number Thirty-three with sales of 33,000.

With a full week in stores before the next round of sales
figures hit, it seems unlikely that 50 Cent will sit anywhere but
Number One next week.

This week’s Top Ten: 50 Cent’s Get Rich or Die Tryin’;
the Dixie Chicks’ Home; Kid Rock’s Cocky; Norah
Jones’ Come Away With Me; Avril Lavigne’s Let Go;
the Chicago soundtrack; Jennifer Lopez’s This Is Me .
. . Then
; Blake Shelton’s The Dreamer; LL Cool J’s
10; and Missy Elliott’s Under Construction.


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