Taylor Swift's 'Red' Easily Tops Billboard 200
As earlier reported, Taylor Swift's Red album explodes at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 1.2 million copies in its first week, according to Nielsen SoundScan. It's the largest sales week for an album since 2002, when Eminem's The Eminem Show sold 1.3 million in its first full week at No. 1.
Red is only the 18th album to sell 1 million units in a single week since SoundScan started tracking sales in 1991.
Settling for a No. 2 debut on the chart this week is Kendrick Lamar's Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City, starting with 241,000. The Top Dawg/Aftermath/Interscope set is Lamar's major-label bow, after earlier charting with his Top Dawg indie release Section.80. The last male artist to start with a bigger sales figure with his first major-label full-length set was Drake, when Thank Me Later launched with 447,000 in June 2010.
Lamar also hits No. 1 on both the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and Rap Albums charts.
Last week's No. 1 on the Billboard 200, Jason Aldean's Night Train, chugs down to No. 3 with 116,000 (down 72%). Another previous No. 1, Mumford & Sons' Babel, dips 2-4 with 53,000 (down 27%).
Pop icon Tony Bennett steps into the top 10 with another duets album, this time pairing himself with an array of Latin music stars. His Viva Duets release starts at No. 5 with 36,000, following the top five success of Duets: An American Classic (No. 3, 2006) and Duets II (No. 1, 2011).
Guitarist/singer Gary Clark Jr. makes a smashing debut at No. 6 with his first major-label studio album, Blak & Blu, selling 35,000 copies. The Warner Bros. set also hits No. 1 on the Blues Albums chart and follows his EP The Bright Lights, which has moved 82,000 to date. It reached No. 91 on the Billboard 200 and No. 1 on Blues Albums.
Rock band Stone Sour earns its third top 10 album on the Billboard 200 as House of Gold & Bones - Part 1 starts at No. 7 with 31,000. It follows 2010's Audio Secrecy, which debuted and peaked at No. 6 with 46,000.
P!nk's The Truth About Love slides 6-8 with 25,000 (down 19%) while Lady Antebellum collects its fourth top 10 set with the No. 9 arrival of On This Winter's Night (nearly 25,000). The 12-song album contains the six tracks Lady A released on its 2010 Target-exclusive EP A Merry Little Christmas. Unlike "Merry," the new set is widely available.