The grammar geek backlash from Jay Z’s hyphen-dropping announcement didn’t cost the rapper another week in the SoundScan penthouse. He’s on top yet again with his Magna Carta Holy Grail, with VH1 You Oughta Know alum Sara Bareilles coming in second place. #SoundScanner investigates this week’s big chart stories:
Bareilles leads debuts: Sara Bareilles’ Blessed Unrest is one of five debuts to crash this week’s Top 10. The “Brave” songstress’ fourth full length set sold 68,000 copies its first week – not as strong as her last album, 2010’s Kaleidoscope Heart, which sold 90,000 copies and debuted at No. 1. Behind Bareilles, the latest Kidz Bop collection, Kidz Bop 24, debuts at No. 3 with 62,000 sales (we credit at least half of those purchases with the screaming kids version of Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop”), and is followed by Florida rapper (and DJ Khaled affiliate) Ace Hood, who wakes up in his new Bugatti at No. 4 with a 34,000 sales start. The soundtrack to the Disney Channel’s Teen Beach (No. 8, 25,000) and Aussie pop singer Cody Simpson’s Surfer’s Paradise (No. 10, 24,000) finish off the week’s top new entries. (SEE ALSO: Sara Bareilles Breaks Down The Blessed Unrest, Track By Track)
‘Magna Carta’ still on top: Jay Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail tops the album chart for a second straight week, selling 129,000 copies. That’s off 76 percent from last week’s 528,000 debut, but it’s still nearly double the week’s second place finisher, Sara Bareilles’ Blessed Unrest. That brings Jay Z’s two-week total to 658,000. Jay’s last studio set, 2009’s The Blueprint 3, didn’t start as strong (it sold 476,000 copies its first week) but held better, dipping 37 percent in its second frame for a two-week total of 777,000. In its third week it fell to No. 2, and Magna Carta could make a similar move with Selena Gomez’s Stars Dance hitting stores this week and gunning for a top debut.
‘Blurred Lines’ No. 1, again: From Malibu to Paribu, Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” is still No. 1 on SoundScan’s Digital Songs chart. And again, no one is even close: “Blurred Lines” sold another 340,000 copies this week, the song’s 17th week on the chart, and Miley Cyrus’ second place finisher “We Can’t Stop” lags 132,000 copies behind with 208,000 sales (for a 1.3 million sales total). The chart’s biggest mover is Finnatticz’ year-old twerk anthem “Don’t Drop That Thun Thun,” which shoots up 35 spots from No. 50 to No. 15. Must be all those twerking Vines its soundtracking.
J Cole goes gold: J Cole’s Born Sinner slips from No. 3 to No. 7 this week, selling 27,000 copies its fifth week in stores. That brings its sales cume to a gold status reaching 506,000 copies. Of course, Born Sinner debuted the same week as Kanye West’s Yeezus, and the two titles have been closely linked by chart watchers and hip-hop fans. Yeezus, for its part, falls this week from No. 6 to No. 18, bringing its five-week total to 475,000. It might hit gold in two week’s time.
Skylar Grey falls: Don’t Look Down is right. Skylar Grey’s Interscope Records debut suffers the worst sales slip of any title in this week’s Top 200, falling from No. 8 to No. 67 on a 77 percent nosedive. That brings the Eminem-produced set to a two-week sales total of 29,000. Four singles have been released from the set, but none have had any chart impact, not even the Slim Shady-assisted “C’mon Let Me Ride.” Grey is best known for writing Em and Rihanna’s global smash “Love the Way You Lie,” and writing and singing hooks for Diddy-Dirty Money (“Coming Home”) and Lupe Fiasco (“Words I Never Said”).