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.