Controversy, the Grammys and record sales: For some artists it clicks and for others there’s little chance of recovery.
The Dixie Chicks, who had well documented troubles selling concert tickets, returned to the news pages at the end of last week after they secured five Grammy nominations. Even with the release of a bonus edition of “Taking the Long Way,” their sales spike was a mere blip: Album sold 22,000 last week, a rise of 6,000 from the previous week. Album dropped a slot to No. 85. This week’s numbers are too early to demonstrate a significant Grammy-related uptick in sales. Holiday season combined with a full week of post-Grammy announcement sales could improve their position on next week’s chart.
The Chicks clearly held on to their music-buying fans when “Taking the Long Way” debuted at No. 1 at the end of May. They have sold 1.25 million copies of the album in the five months since they debuted with an opening sales week of 526,000.
Although it was quietly released by Atlantic four weeks ago, the buying public is starting to realize that Yusuf is indeed Cat Stevens and that “An Other Cup” sounds very much like a middle period Cat Stevens album. For the week ended Sunday, “An Other Cup” sold 29,000 copies, Yusuf’s strongest sales week to date. It debuted with 20,000 sold and now has a cume of 73,000. Last week it leaped 50 slots to land at No. 68.
On the other side is Janet Jackson, whose “20 Y.O.” has died a quick commercial death. Album’s cume is 569,000 but just two months after its release, it is in the doldrums. Last week it mustered just 11,000 in sales (No. 158) and is on its way to being the weakest seller of her career.
And among debuts between 51 and 200: Dirty South hip-hopper Project Pat’s “Crook by Da Book: Fed Story” (Columbia) sold 31,000 (No. 64); “It’s Only Time” (Motown) by actor-singer Drake Bell sold 23,000 (No. 81); the collectors edition of “Dreamgirls” (Columbia) sold 14,000 (No. 132); and Rhino’s 4-CD/1-DVD set “Sinatra: Vegas,” one of the season’s finest boxed sets, sold 9,000 (No. 165).