Chart Buzz: Jay-Z, Ciara, Robin Thicke, Miley Cyrus

Posted July 19, 2013 by J Matthew Cobb in News

Jay-Z makes big splash at top of Billboard 200 (even without the Samsung points attached) and Ciara takes the second spot; Robin Thicke and Miley Cyrus continues to brighten the pathway in the singles’ world

To sell albums nowadays – even if you’re a mega superstar, you have to find a nifty gimmick to pull off a 1M seller. Jay-Z‘s super promotion deal with Samsung, which included the instant download disbursement of one million free copies of his album in app form, didn’t necessarily affect the sales of his twelfth album, Magna Carta Holy Grail, but it doesn’t have the big bang that he could have been. It sold 528,000 copies in its first week — more than what initial reports had predicted. Early reports were estimating first week sales to fall in between 350,000-400,000. The numbers quickly changed as the end of the week arrived.

Oddly enough, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has already awarded Jay-Z with a gold plaque for selling one million copies due to the Samsung deal, but Nielsen SoundScan and Billboard would not recognize the freebies since it did not encompass the idea of actual purchases and was considered a bulk purchase from a company.

Magna Carta… marks Jay Z’s fourth album to debut with more than a half-million copies in its first week. It’s also his best sales week for any solo album since 2006’s Kingdom Come opened at number 1 with 680,000 copies sold. His last solo studio album, 2009’s The Blueprint 3, opened at number 1 with 476,000 sold. 2011’s Watch the Throne, his collaborative effort with Kanye West, sold 436,000.

Jay-Z’s Magna Carta… now hold the distinction of being the year’s second best-selling album in its first week, which trails behind Justin Timberlake‘s The 20/20 Experience (968,000 copies). Daft Punk actually held the distinctive honor that Jay-Z currently occupies. Jay-Z is currently on tour with Justin Timberlake for the Legends of Summer Tour, which launched in Toronto on July 17.

At number two this week on the Billboard 2o0 was Ciara. Her self-titled fourth album debuted with 59,000 copies sold. It may look like a small number to some, but it’s avtually an improvement when compared with the R&B singer’s last effort, 2010’s Basic Instinct (37,000 on week one). Much of the Top 10 on this week’s Billboard 200 are repeat offenders, but Skylar Grey‘s debut album, Don’t Look Down, managed to hit No. 8 with 24,000 copies sold.

Hip-hop rapper J. Cole made a big splash last week with his sophomore album, Born Sinner, which debuted last week at number one. This week, it falls to number 3, selling 28,000 copies (down 32%). Florida Georgia Line‘s Here’s to the Good Times rises 5-4 with 33,000 copies sold (up 5%). Imagine Dragons’ Night Visions drops 4-5 with a number slightly under 33,000 copies sold. Daft Punk‘s Random Access Memories drops 7-9 with 23,000 copies sold (down 17%). Indie heroes Macklemore & Ryan Lewis closes out the Top Ten with 2012’s The Heist, selling 23,000 copies (down 5%). The rap duo is enjoying a great deal of success with their two major singles (“Thrift Shop,” “Can’t Hold Us”) and with the rise of “Same Love,” which has been used extensively in support of nationwide campaigns directed towards marriage equality.

On the Digital Songs chart, Robin Thicke continues to hold down the fort in its sixth week with the T.I/Pharrell-guested “Blurred Lines,” selling 384,000 downloads for the week, down by 9%. Miley Cyrus‘ “We Can’t Stop” is steadily growing with chart traction as it now holds the second spot for yet another week, shifting 216,000 copies (up 3%). On the Billboard Hot 100, “Get Lucky” continues to show its power, holding tightly to the number two spot. Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop,” Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “Can’t Hold Us” trail the Daft Punk hit, respectively. Growing on the Hot 100 is Bruno Mars‘ “Treasure,” which rises 8-7 and has only been on the chart for nine weeks. So far, Mars has had two singles from his 2012 album Unorthodox Jukebox to hit number one.


week of July 27, 2013
(Billboard/Nielsen SoundScan)

Billboard Hot 100

1. Robin Thicke – “Blurred Lines” (feat. T.I. and Pharrell)
2. Daft Punk  – “Get Lucky” (feat. Pharrell Williams)
3. Miley Cyrus – “We Can’t Stop”
4. Imagine Dragons – “Radioactive”
5. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – “Can’t Hold Us” (feat. Ray Dalton)
6. Florida Georgia Line  – “Cruise” (feat. Nelly)
7. Bruno Mars – “Treasure”
8. Jay-Z – “Holy Grail”
9. Justin Timberlake – “Mirrors”
10. Anna Kendrick – Cups (Pitch Perfect’s When I’m Gone)

Billboard 200

1. Jay-Z – Magna Carta Holy Grail
2. Ciara – Ciara
3. J. Cole – Born Sinner
4. Florida Georgia Line – Here’s to the Good Times
5. Imagine Dragons – Night Visions
6. Kanye West –Yeezus
7. Wale – The Gifted
8. Skylar Grey – Don’t Look Down
9. Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
10. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – The Heist

About the Author

J Matthew Cobb

Managing editor of HiFi Magazine


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