The Big News: For the first time in a year, the top ten albums each sold 100,000 or more copies — a sure sign that the holiday shopping season has begun. Aided by a knockout performance at the American Music Awards, a segment on CBS Sunday Morning, and constant promotion on MTV and elsewhere, Alicia Keys scored a massive 742,000 debut — the second best of the year, behind Kanye West. And the power of Oprah was proven yet again: After the daytime queen featured Josh Groban on her “Favorite Things” episode, the crooner sold 223,000 copies of his Christmas album, Noel — a 93 percent sales leap — jumping from number six to number two.
Debuts: After Keys, the next biggest new entry was from Celine Dion, who sold 214,000 copies of her first album in four years to land at number three. The Now 26 hits compilation snagged number four (207,000), while the Led Zeppelin hits compilation, Mothership, moved 136,000 units for a number-seven bow.
Last Week’s Heroes: Groban’s was the only one of last week’s top albums to move up in the charts, but Garth Brooks’ hits album didn’t drop too far, from number three to five. The Eagles’ Long Road Out of Eden dropped from two to seven, while Jay-Z dropped sharply from last week’s number one perch to number eight. Albums from Carrie Underwood and Chris Brown round out the top ten.