MORE EVIDENCE ROCK HAS RESURRECTED ITSELF THROUGH COUNTRY: At a time when music superstars’ sales have diminished with every release — poor Mariah Carey‘s Me. I Am Mariah . . . The Elusive Chanteuse sold 58,000 before dropping out of the top 10 — Rolling Stone cover star Miranda Lambert is going in the opposite direction. First-week sales of her albums have totaled 40,000, 53,000, 66,000, 133,000 and, with this week’s Platinum, 179,000. Lambert had the foresight to name the album after her hair color, not any kind of sales prediction, because her latest single “Somethin’ Bad,” a duet with Carrie Underwood, has dropped 65 spots, to Number 79, on the Ultimate Chart (which measures Internet criteria in addition to traditional sales and airplay). Lambert plays the Florida Country Superfest this weekend, then begins a tour on July 10th, so she may drum up more attention and build sales throughout the summer.
THAT’S LED ZEPPELIN LED ZEPPELIN LED ZEPPELIN TO YOU: Moving past the depressing chart news of the week — the Frozen soundtrack has inexplicably surged to Number Two, selling 52,000 copies, while Coldplay‘s new Ghost Stories fell from Number One to Number Five, with just 46,000 sales — Led Zeppelin is back. In the same year that Colorado and Washington enacted legal marijuana laws, which I believe is no coincidence, newly expanded Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II and Led Zeppelin III have hit Number Seven, Number Nine and Number 10, respectively. I’m usually dubious when classic bands cash in by reissuing old albums for the umpteenth time (I’ve owned them in three different formats), but these packages are pretty stellar.
SUMMER-SINGLE SWEEPSTAKES UPDATE: It looks like Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” is the summer single to beat, selling another 263,000 downloads this week and maintaining its Number One stranglehold on Billboard‘s Digital Songs chart. But an off-kilter sleeper may be Sam Smith’s weepy ballad “Stay With Me,” which has grown to 14.5 million YouTube views since it came out in March and rises this week from Number 10 to Number Three with 167,000 sales. The other summer single candidates? Ariana Grande’s “Problem” (Number Two, 215,000 sales); Jason Derulo’s “Wiggle” (Number Five, 146,000); and 5 Seconds of Summer’s “Good Girls” (which didn’t officially chart but hit Number Four on the Ultimate Chart and the band has summer in its name).