Beyoncé’s “Renaissance” is expected to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart (knocking out Bad Bunny’s seven-week stint with “Un Verano Sin Ti”), marking one of the biggest opening weeks of the year. Should it enter atop the chart, “Renaissance” will be the first album recorded by a woman in 2022 to land at No. 1.
The 16-track album was released on July 29 and according to data from Luminate via Billboard, it has earned over 275,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in its opening four days (through Aug. 1). A majority of that total derives from the album sales which are at an estimated 175,000 — the rest of the tally comes from streaming-generated activity. Even so, “Renaissance” has three more days to collect additional units in the week ending Aug. 4.
A bulk of the album’s initial sales can be tracked to direct-to-consumer sales of the album. Beyoncé’s official website/storefront is selling deluxe boxed set editions of “Renaissance,” comprising of a T-shirt and CD combo — which many in the BeyHive have scooped up as collectible items. In addition to the sale of deluxe box sets, Beyoncé has already sold over 25,000 copies on vinyl — the singer’s largest sales week ever for a vinyl album.
On its first day of release, “Renaissance” amassed over 50.6 million on-demand official streams in the U.S. and on its second and third days of release, the tracks garnered 30.9 million and 21.7 million hits, respectively. In addition to achieving the biggest opening week of the year, “Renaissance” would be the first effort released by a woman in 2022 to top the albums chart. Adele accomplished the feat in 2021 with the highly-anticipated “30,” also released under Columbia Records.
By contrast, “Renaissance” is facing three other albums that have entered with larger debut weeks in 2022 (despite the tracking week still not being over) by equivalent album units. “Renaissance” will have to rival Harry Styles’ “Harry’s House” which tallied 521,000 units; BTS’ “Proof” which collected 314,000 units and Kendrick Lamar’s “Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers” with 295,000.
“Renaissance” is Beyoncé’s first solo studio album since the release of 2016’s “Lemonade.” Although none of them were full studio solo albums, she released four projects in the time in-between: In 2018, she dropped “Everything Is Love,” with her husband Jay-Z under the name the Carters; in April of 2019, she put out “Homecoming,” an album of comprising of her 2018 headlining performance at Coachella; and that summer she followed with “The Lion King: The Gift,” the accompanying album to the Disney film that featured a variety of new Beyoncé songs (a deluxe edition of that album featuring three additional tracks was released a year later).