The sales forecast for Luke Bryan‘s new album just keeps getting brighter.
Two days ago, industry prognosticators suggested Bryan’s Crash My Party album might sell 450,000 copies by the end of the tracking week on Sunday, Aug. 18. Now, that forecast has been upgraded to 500,000 — if not more.
Unless something really “Crazy” happens, Bryan’s album will open at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. It would be his second chart-topping album — and second this year, following Spring Break… Here to Party.The new Billboard 200 chart’s top 10 will be revealed on the morning of Wednesday, Aug. 21.
Crazy‘s debut will also instantly give Bryan the third-largest sales week of 2013. Only the debuts of Justin Timberlake‘s The 20/20 Experience (968,000) and Jay Z’s Magna Carta…Holy Grail (528,000) captured bigger weeks.
Further, Crash may log the largest sales week for a male country artist since way back in 2004. That November, Tim McGraw‘s Live Like You Were Dying bowed with 766,000.
Stunningly, since 2008, only three country albums have sold more than a half-million copies in a single week — and they’re all by Taylor Swift. She’s seen half-million bows with each of her last three studio albums: 2012’s Red (a 1.21 million debut), 2010’s Speak Now (1.05 million) and 2008’s Fearless (592,000).
Heading for a No. 2 arrival next week is K. Michelle‘s debut album Rebellious Soul, with perhaps 65,000 copies. Possible bows in the top 15 include Parachute’s Overnight and Hoodie Allen’s Americoustic EP.
On SoundScan’s Building chart, Bryan and Michelle are Nos. 1 and 2, respectively. The Building tally is a precursor to the final Billboard 200 ranking — reflecting the first four days (Monday through Thursday) of SoundScan’s tracking week as reported by six major merchants.
As for the rest of the top 10: The Now 47 album is in third place, followed by Robin Thicke‘s Blurred Lines and the Civil Wars’ self-titled effort at Nos. 4 and 5. Jay Z’s Magna Carta… Holy Grail is No. 6, the Teen Beach Movie soundtrack is No. 7 and Florida Georgia Line’s Here’s to the Good Times is No. 8. Imagine Dragons’ Night Visions is No. 9, while Parachute closes out the top 10 at No. 10.