Elvis fans — 1,043,122 of them — can’t be wrong: The King vanquished yet another would-be rival for supremacy in the album charts this week, hanging on to the No. 1 spot for the third frame running.
Elvis lovers snapped up slightly more than 205,000 copies of RCA Records’ high-profile compilation “Elvis 30 #1 Hits” in the latest session, according to Nielsen SoundScan data.
BMG has also successfully exported its Elvismania revival: The album has sold almost 6 million copies worldwide to date, topping the album charts in 24 countries.
Despite the downturn from previous weeks, sales figures for “Elvis” have shown promising signs of holding up well through the holiday season — a make-or-break time for RCA parent BMG, which has spent close to $10 million marketing the disc.
The Bertelsmann-owned label isn’t counting on Presley exclusively to make Christmas merry, however. BMG’s fourth-quarter slate includes new material from Whitney Houston, Santana, Christina Aguilera, the Foo Fighters and Busta Rhymes, among others.
Presley managed to fend off the latest effort from New Jersey arena-rock vets Bon Jovi. “Bounce,” their Island Records release, scanned just under 160,000 copies in its debut outing. That was enough to push last week’s silver medalist, the Rolling Stones compilation “Forty Licks” (Virgin), down to third with 147,000 units sold.
Another rock veteran, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, entered the upper echelons of the charts at No. 9, shifting more than 74,000 copies of “Last DJ” (Warner Bros.), an indictment of the music business. Two spots below Petty was “Golden Road” (Capitol Nashville), the latest from New Zealand-born country crooner Keith Urban. “Road,” Urban’s first album of new material in three years, scanned nearly 67,000 units in its first week out.
Further down, “Wonder What’s Next” (Epic) from alt-metal newcomers Chevelle landed at 14 with 61,000 discs sold, while Los Angeles hip-hop collective Jurassic Five claimed 15 with “Power In Numbers” (Interscope), moving 59,000 copies.
Actress Jennifer Love Hewitt made it to 37 with her musical debut “Barenaked” (Jive), selling 27,000 units. Heather Headley, the former Broadway actress who starred in “Aida,” opened at 38 with her R&B debut “This Is Who I Am” (RCA), selling 26,000 copies.
Next week, the King stands a good chance of being dethroned by Warner Music’s country-pop queen, Faith Hill. The flaxen-haired songstress’ fifth studio album, “Cry” (Warner Bros.), hit stores on Tuesday.