Amos Lee Tops: This Week in Music Sales
It's a take-the-good/take-the-bad sort of week on the Billboard 200.
On the one hand, singer/songwriter Amos Lee collects his first No. 1 and a career-high sales week of 40,000, according to Nielsen SoundScan, with his new album, Mission Bell. Lee had never sold more than 16,000 copies of an album in a week previously -- a high earned when his 2008 set Last Days at the Lodge started at No. 16.
On the other hand? The obvious: The top-selling album of the week yet again moves a record low total since SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991. A record -- as we've mentioned previously -- that was only set two weeks ago when Cake's Showroom of Compassion bowed atop the list with 44,000.
Lee's Blue Note set gives the beleaguered EMI Music its second straight No. 1, following the Decemberists' Capitol effort The King Is Dead last week. EMI hasn't had two toppers in a row since 1998, when Beastie Boys' Grand Royal/Capitol album Hello Nasty was followed by Snoop Dogg's No Limit/Priority release Da Game Is To Be Sold, Not To Be Told. Lee's set is Blue Note's fourth No. 1, following three toppers from Norah Jones.
Iron and Wine (aka Samuel Beam) starts in the runner-up slot this week with Kiss Each Other Clean, shifting 39,000 -- another career high. Previously, the act had never risen higher than No. 24 with Shepherd's Dog in 2007 (32,000 up on its debut).
Nicki Minaj's Pink Friday rises six slots to No. 3 with 38,000 (up 35%) while the new 2011 Grammy Nominees compilation bows at No. 4 (38,000). Bruno Mars' Doo-Wops & Hooligans skips up one to No. 5 (despite a 4% decline; 33,000) and Mumford & Sons' Sigh No More is up four rungs to No. 6 (31,000; up 17%).
Taylor Swift's Speak Now is up one to No. 7 (31,000; down less than 1%) and Wisin & Yandel's Los Vaqueros: El Regreso debuts at No. 8 with nearly 31,000. It's the second top 10 for the latter act, after La Revolucion began at No. 7 in 2009 with a larger figure: 36,000.
Closing out the top 10 albums are the Kidz Bop 19 set at No. 9 (falling seven, 30,000; down 57%) and last week's No. 1, the Decemberists' The King Is Dead at No. 10 (29,000; down 69%).
Over on the Digital Songs chart, things are a lot peppier, as P!nk's F**kin' Perfect makes a f**kin' huge jump from No. 6 to No. 1, selling 241,000 downloads (up 67%). She displaces Bruno Mars' Grenade, which falls to No. 3 (166,000; down 19%).
Holding at No. 2 is Wiz Khalifa with Black and Yellow (187,000; down 7%). Pitbull's Hey Baby rises three to No. 4 (155,000; up 10%), Enrique Iglesias' Tonight (I'm Lovin' You) falls one to No. 5 (141,000; down 16%) and Katy Perry's Firework is down a slot to No. 6 (133,000; down 18%). Diddy - Dirty Money's Coming Home is up one to No. 7 (131,000; down 7%), Far*East Movement's Rocketeer rockets six rungs to No. 8 (125,000; up 26%), the Black Eyed Peas' The Time (Dirty Bit) holds at No. 9 (115,000; down 16%) and Britney Spears' Hold It Against Me falls seven to No. 10 (113,000; down 38%).
Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Jan. 30) totaled 5.3 million units, up 1% compared with the sum last week (5.2 million) and down 18% compared with the comparable sales week of 2010 (6.5 million). Year-to-date album sales stand at 20.8 million, down 13% compared with the same total at this point last year (23.9 million).
Digital track sales this past week totaled 24.7 million downloads, down 6% compared to last week (26.4 million) and down 1% stacked next to the comparable week of 2010 (24.9 million). Year-to-date track sales are at 108.3 million, up 4% compared with the same total at this point last year (103.9 million).
Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2010 when: Lady Antebellum's Need You Now held at No. 1 for a second week (209,000; down 57%) while Lil Wayne's Rebirth opened at No. 2 (176,000). Nick Jonas and the Administration's debut set, Who I Am, started at No. 3 with 82,000.