Drake tops U.S. charts with ‘Thank’

Album sells 447,000 copies

The record industry is giving thanks to Drake, as the rapper’s debut album “Thank Me Later” enters at No. 1 on the U.S. album chart with some of the biggest numbers of the year.

The Canadian performer’s Cash Money bow hits the chart with out-of-the-box sales of 447,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan data for the week ending June 20. That’s the third-best debut of 2010: Sade’s comeback “Soldier of Love” entered with a 502,000-unit first-week tally in mid-February, while Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now,” the year’s bestseller to date, opened with 481,000 units earlier that month.

Drake’s set dwarfed a couple of other debuts near the top of the chart.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ “Mojo” (Reprise) lands at No. 2; the veteran band’s hard-rocking set reaped a debut score of 125,000 units. Sara McLachlan’s “Laws of Illusion” (Arista), singer’s first new studio album in seven years, arrives at No. 3, packing first-week sales of 94,000 units.

The 34th installment in the long-running hits series “Now That’s What I Call Music” moves in at No. 4 with 88,000 sold. Current package includes chart singles by Justin Bieber, Ke$ha, Ludacris, the Black Eyed Peas and other name acts.

Surfin’ singer-songwriter Jack Johnson’s “To the Sea” (Brushfire), No. 1 two weeks ago, slips a notch to No. 5, shifting 68,000 (a 24% drop).

The numbers get much thinner in the bottom half of the top 10. Rounding out the week’s biggest albums: the “Twilight Saga: Eclipse” soundtrack (No. 6, 55,000 units, down 63%), Justin Bieber’s “My World 2.0” (No. 7, 47,000, down 4%), Lady A’s “Need You Now” (No. 8, 40,000, up 3%), Christina Aguilera’s “Bionic” (No. 9, 40,000, down 64%) and last week’s No. 1 entry, the “Glee” EP “Journey to Regionals” (No. 10, 39,000, down 75%).

Rap deity Eminem’s “Recovery,” released Monday, should set up shop at the top of the chart next week.

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