Nancy Hall: Lil Wayne's million a big feat
In an age of music downloads and declining album sales, it was an amazing feat last week when Lil’ Wayne sold more than 1 million copies of “Tha Carter III” its debut week. Helped by the single “Lollipop” Lil’ Wayne hit a milestone not many artists see. In fact in the last 10 years only six other artists have reached this sales status.
First was country superstar Garth Brooks. Brooks has six diamond-selling albums, but it wasn’t until his 10th album, “Double Live,” he sold a million copies in a single week. The album broke the single-week sales record when it debuted in November 1998. But the record was not his for long.
With the height of “TRL” came a series of million-plus first-week sellers in spring 2000. First was N’Sync’s sophomore album, “No Strings Attached.” Blowing away Brooks’ previous record the guys sold more than a million albums in the first day and 2.41 million in the first week. This is still the U.S. one-week sales record.
A few months later pop princess Britney Spears sold 1.3 million units of her sophomore album “Oops! ... I Did It Again” in its debut week, and the Backstreet Boys were just behind with 1.13 million copies of their latest, “Millennium.” Yet the “TRL” era didn’t just help pop acts.
Eminem blew them both away the same month with 1.76 million copies of “The Marshall Mathers LP” flying off the shelves in its debut week. That number gave him a world record for the fastest-selling rap album ever.
More than one year later, N’Sync became the only artist to reach this milestone twice. Their third album, “Celebrity,” sold more than 1.9 million units in the first week, second only to themselves in Soundscan sales history.
It was almost four years before another artist became a million one-week seller. 50 Cent’s sophomore album “The Massacre” was forced to drop early because of illegal downloads, but still sold 1.14 million copies in its first four days.
Now three years later, Lil’ Wayne is clearly in good company with his million seller “Tha Carter III.” The only question now is who will be the next to reach this impressive milestone?
Music Buzz: Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler is out of rehab, but undergoing outpatient treatment. ... Britney Spears is working on a new album. ... Amy Winehouse has been diagnosed with early stage emphysema.
E-mail Nancy Hall at email@example.com