Jones 'Not Too Late' for No. 1 debut


NEW YORK - After a three-year absence from The Billboard 200, Norah Jones earns her third No. 1 on the chart with "Not Too Late" (Blue Note), which sold 405,000 first-week copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. Jones' last album, "Feels Like Home," shifted 1.02 million in its first week in February 2004; her 2002 debut, "Come Away With Me" also bowed at the top.

Right behind Jones is "American Idol" star Katharine McPhee with her self-titled RCA debut, which sold 116,000 copies. Counting the 10 artists who have finished in either first or second place in the five seasons of "Idol," all but two have started in the top 10 with their debut album.

Fellow "Idol" contestant Chris Daughtry remains at No. 3 with the self-titled RCA debut from his band Daughtry. The album sold 77,000, a small 4% decline over last week. New at No. 4 is Celtic Woman's "A New Journey" (Manhattan/EMI) with 71,000. It gives the group its third No. 1 on Billboard's Top World Albums chart as well as its best sales week and highest charting Billboard 200 set.

Last week's No. 1, Pretty Ricky's "Late Night Special" (Atlantic), plummets 53% in sales to 62,000 and drops to No. 5. Akon's "Konvicted" (SRC/Universal) inches up 7-6 on an 11.7% jump to 56,000, while the Shins' "Wincing the Night Away" (Sub Pop) slides 2-8 in its second week on a 55% decline to 53,000.

Robin Thicke's "The Evolution of Robin Thicke" (Star Trak/Interscope) is down 8-9 despite a 15.5% gain to 52,000. Rounding out the top 10 is the "2007 Grammy Nominees" album, which falls 4-10 on a 39% slide to 48,000.

Harry Connick, Jr.'s "Oh, My Nola" (Columbia) arrives at No. 11 with 44,000 and also opens at No. 1 on the Top Jazz Albums chart, his ninth chart-topper there. Right behind at No. 12 is Jill Scott's "Collaborations" (Hidden Beach), which sold about 100 fewer copies than "Oh, My Nola."

In a week filled with debuts, Madonna's "The Confessions Tour" CD/DVD (Warner Bros.) begins at No. 15 with 40,000, while the "Totally Country Vol. 6" compilation (BMG Marketing) starts at No. 18 with 37,000. U.K. phenom Lily Allen lands at No. 20 with her Capitol debut, "Alright, Still," which sold 34,000, and the "WOW Gospel 2007" compilation (Verity) is new at No. 21 with about 100 copies fewer than Allen's disc.

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah's self-released sophomore album, "Some Loud Thunder," debuts at No. 47 with 19,000. The group's self-titled 2005 debut never appeared on the big chart but went on to sell 126,000 U.S. copies without the benefit of a label.

Album sales are up 10% from last week's total at 9.37 million units but down 14.6% from the same week in 2006.