US Charts Review

The struggle may not be new, but as urban music lovers, I bet one can find it very irritating. Positioning on the charts should be the least of the concern this time around. With the cast of American musical comedy series “Glee” taking the #1 spot with new release, it leaves our pop, hip hop and RnB acts lacking sales under the mark of approximately 62,000. Though the sales and positioning of our newly added albums deserves a serious discussion, we’re glad to welcome new projects from Nas & Damian Marley, Reflection Eternal and Janelle Monae. Who’s winning and who’s losing? Let’s move to exhibit A… the charts.

Starting the charts off at #4, Justin Bieber leads for the urban gang with 61,935 sold for “My World 2.0.” The following, debuting in #5 with 55,084 sold are Nas & Damian Marley with their collaborative effort, “Distant Relatives.” The Queensbridge MC and son of legendary reggae artist Bob Marley team up to discuss themes pertaining to ancestry, poverty, and the motherland, Africa. Upon it’s release, the album built up a lot of anticipation being that the recording has been in process since the past two years. Along with the interesting collaboration, “Distant Relatives” also includes some eye-opening features such as K’naan, Stephen Marley, Lil Wayne and classic “lovers rock” reggae artist, Dennis Brown.

Usher obviously moves out of his #5 for Nas & Damian, but now he clocks in at #8 for “Raymond v. Raymond,” which sold 41,264. Lady Gaga‘s “The Fame” takes #12 this week with 27,857 sold. B.o.B. pushes 22,315 units for “The Adventures of Bobby Ray” and Bieber stays content at #16 for EP “My World” with 21,590 sold. Ke$ha also remains in last week’s spot of #18 and sold 19,600 for “Animal.” MC/Proucer duo Talib Kweli and Hi-Tek come together as Reflection Eternal and debut their new album “Revolutions Per Minute” at #19 with a disappointing 19,080. I guess authentic hip-hop isn’t what’s in nowadays. Anyways, “Revolutions Per Minute” is the second studio album from the duo, following their 2000 debut release, “Train of Thought.” All production on the album is done by Hi-Tek, but some features include notable names such as Mos Def, J. Cole, Jay Electronica, Bun B and more. In fact, the current single “Midnight Hour” features Estelle as well.

Two slots down, our last debut makes their way on the charts. Coming in at #21, Janelle Monae sales 17,751 for her debut album, “The ArchAndroid (Suite II and III.)” Although this is Monae’s official debut, “The ArchAndroid” is actually the follow up to her EP “The Metropolis: Suite I (The Chase),” which was released in 2007. The album continues a fictional tale with incorporated elements of afro-futurism and science fiction, but also tackling lyrical subjects of love, identity and self-realization. The theme and topics also come alive over the various sounds on the project, which features fusions of pop, funk, soul. The main single for the album is titled “Tightrope,” which features Big Boi.

The Black Eyed Peas drop three spots into #23 and sold 17,399 for “The E.N.D. (Energy Never Dies).” Gaga remains at #26 for EP “The Fame Monster,” and sold 15,199 this week. Ludacris also hold on to his position of #30 for “Battle of the Sexes” and sold 12,797 more copies. Alicia Keys does the “un-thinkable” and moves up from #41 to #33 for “The Element of Freedom,” which sold 11,766 this week. Toni Braxton dropped 11 spots for “Pulse” placing her in the #36 spot with 11,444 sold. Monica also dropped eight spots into #43 for “Still Standing,” which sold 10,242. Rihanna remains on the charts with 9,001 sold at #46 for “Rated R” and Lil Wayne follows with 8,907 sold into #47 for “Rebirth.” Closing up the charts this week, we have Sade at #49 for “Solider of Love,” which sold 8,682.

As you can see, good and notable projects suffer the embarrassment because we refuse to go to out local store and spend less than 10 bucks. Check back next week to see if we can pull these artists into some better album sales. Also, the charts will welcome new projects from the RnB/soul artists Lyfe Jennings and Leela James.

Written by Shabazz

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