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Late rapper Juice WRLD is making history months after passing away at the age of 21.
The rapper’s first posthumous album Legends Never Die, released on July 10, opened with the largest first week sales of 2020, as it earned 497,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending July 16, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. The record debuted No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and was released via Grade A/Interscope Records.
Juice WRLD’s album now ranks as the biggest posthumous debut since Notorious B.I.G.’s Life After Death [690K] and 2Pac’s R U Still Down [549K] in 1997. The rapper’s album also secured the biggest week for a Hip-Hop album or by a male artist in nearly two years following Travis Scott’s Astroworld released in 2018, according to Billboard.
Legends Never Die marks the late artist’s second No. 1 album, following his 2019 release Death Race for Love. It is currently No.1 in the UK, Canada, Ireland and more.
Juice WRLD’s mother Carmela Wallace and Grade A commented on the album’s success in a statement sent to The Hollywood Reporter: “The overwhelming love that millions of music fans clearly have for Jarad reminds us how much his poetic words, creativity, and bright light continues to shine throughout the world,” Wallace says. “This first collection of songs is a poignant reminder of his great artistic talent and emotional honesty. Music was his passion and recording gave him the outlet to share everything he was going through.”
She continued: “In addition to his music, Jarad’s legacy will continue to provide help to young people through his Live Free 999 Foundation. We are incredibly grateful to the fans who continue to uplift him every single day and our hope is that his words touch your life in a way that helps you through any challenges you may be facing.”
In addition to having the highest-selling debut of the year, the album also achieved the biggest audio streaming week of the year, surpassing Lil Uzi Vert’s Eternal Atake album, as well as the biggest video streaming week of the year, besting Lil Baby’s My Turn. It’s currently the fourth biggest streaming debut ever, following Drake’s Scorpion, Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter V and Post Malone’s Beerbongs and Bentleys, according to Nielsen Music.
Juice WRLD’s Legends Never Die also marks the biggest debut since Taylor Swift’s seventh studio album, Lover, released in Aug. 2019.
Juice WRLD, full name Jarad Anthony Higgins, passed away last December after suffering from a seizure while in the terminal at Chicago’s Midway Airport. He was alive when paramedics arrived on the scene, but was pronounced dead at a local hospital shortly thereafter.
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