Drake's 'Take Care' Debuts At No. 1 On Billboard 200

12:35 PM PST 11/23/2011 by Keith Caulfield, Billboard
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Adele's "21" marking its 39th straight week in the top five of the chart surpasses Michael Jackson's "Bad" following its bow at No. 1 on Sept. 27, 1987.

As expected, Drake nets the third-largest sales week of 2011 for an album, as Take Care debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 631,000 copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

While that's a slightly smaller number than initially expected, it's nothing to scoff at. Last Friday, industry sources pegged the set's start around 675,000 to 700,000.

Drake Raps About 700,000 First-Week Sales Projection for Take Care on American Music Awards

Still, the only two sets to sell more in a week this year were Lady Gaga's Born This Way debut (1.1 million) and Lil Wayne's Tha Carter IV start (964,000).

Take is Drake's second chart-topper, following 2010's Thank Me Later, which launched with 447,000.

It's unlikely Drake will hold on to the top slot next week, as early forecasts from sources suggest Nickelback's new Here and Now (released Nov. 21) may open at No. 1.

As for the rest of this week's top 10, Michael Buble's Christmas holds at No. 2 with a big 35% sales gain, selling 165,000. It's a contender for the No. 1 position the week after next, with an outside shot at topping the tally next week.

Adele's 21 rises 5-3 (113,000; up 8%), marking its 39th straight week in the top five of the chart -- its entire chart run since it debuted at No. 1. In turn, it sets a record for the most weeks an album has stayed in the top five, since its debut, in the chart's 55-year history. It surpasses Michael Jackson's Bad, which racked 38 straight frames in the top five following its bow at No. 1 on Sept. 27, 1987.

Andrea Bocelli's Concerto: One Night in Central Park starts at No. 4 with 87,000, landing the singer his sixth top 10 effort. Meanwhile, Bocelli's 2009 holiday set, My Christmas, climbs 62-36 with 17,000 (up 83%).

Justin Bieber's Under the Mistletoe rises 6-5 with 84,000 (down 13%) while Glee, the Music: The Christmas Album, Volume 2 debuts at No. 6 with 71,000. The first Glee "Christmas" album debuted at No. 8 on the Dec. 4, 2010, Billboard 200 chart with 161,000 sold.

For those keeping score, there are now three albums in the top 10 that feature a cover of Mariah Carey's 1994 chestnut All I Want for Christmas Is You, which she co-wrote with Walter Afanasieff. Both sets by Buble (No. 2) and Bieber (No. 5) boast the track, as does the Glee effort at No. 6. Can you hear Carey counting her Christmas cash?

The Now 40 compilation falls 3-7 (71,000; down 40%), the The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn: Part 1 soundtrack slips 4-8 (61,000; down 42%), and Coldplay's Mylo Xyloto moves 8-9 (54,000; down 23%). Rounding out the top 10 is Susan Boyle's Someone to Watch Over Me, going 7-10 with 52,000 (down 27%).

Last week's No. 1 album, Mac Miller's Blue Slide Park, falls incredibly to No. 24 this week with 25,000 sold (down 83%). It's the fourth-largest positional drop from No. 1 since SoundScan began powering the Billboard 200 chart with its sales data in May 1991. Only Incubus' Light Grenades (1-37 in 2006), Amos Lee's Mission Bell (1-26 this year) and Cake's Showroom of Compassion (1-25, this year as well), have fallen harder.

Over on the Digital Songs chart, Rihanna's "We Found Love" (featuring Calvin Harris) is still sitting pretty at No. 1, selling another 211,000 downloads (down 7%). LMFAO's "Sexy and I Know It" is a non-mover at No. 2, with 181,000 (down 7%). Bruno Mars' "It Will Rain," from the aforementioned "Twilight" film, rises 8-3 (171,000; up 32%) following the release of the movie last week.

Drake's "Take Care," featuring Rihanna, debuts at No. 4 with 162,000 while the "Glee" cast's mash-up of Adele's "Rumour Has It"/"Someone Like You" bows at No. 5 with 160,000. For "Glee," this marks the fifth-largest sales week of any of the cast's singles, surpassed by only the troupe's debuts of "Teenage Dream" (214,000), "Loser Like Me" (210,000), "Forget You" (192,000) and "Don't Stop Believin'" (177,000).

David Guetta's "Without You" (featuring Usher) falls 4-6 (140,000; down 13%), Flo Rida's "Good Feeling" holds steady at No. 7 (139,000; down less than 1%), and Adele's "Someone Like You" drops 6-8 (137,000; down 4%).
 
Rihanna's new "You Da One" arrives straight in at No. 9 (124,000) while another Drake track from his "Take Care" album, "The Motto" (featuring Lil Wayne), bows at No. 10 (124,000).

Overall album sales in this past chart week (ending Nov. 20) totaled 7 million units, up 9% compared with the sum last week (6.4 million) and down 13% compared with the comparable sales week of 2010 (8.1 million). Year-to-date album sales stand at 268.9 million, up 3% compared with the same total at this point last year (261.8 million).

Digital track sales this past week totaled 21.7 million downloads, down 4% compared with last week (22.7 million) and down 3% stacked next to the comparable week of 2010 (22.5 million). Year-to-date track sales are at 1.1 billion, up 10% compared with the same total at this point last year (1 billion).

Next week's Billboard 200 competes with the same week in 2010 when: Kanye West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy started at No. 1 with 496,000 and Nicki Minaj's Pink Friday flew in at No. 2 with 375,000. The previous week's topper, Susan Boyle's The Gift, fell to No. 3 with 263,000 (down 21%).

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