#1 albums, Madonna's had a few. Eight to be exact, including five in a row, now that latest album MDNA has claimed pole position for its own. Madge's 13th studio LP moves an impressive 359,000 copies in its first week—about 80k more than previous album Hard Candy sold, even with that album having more of a hit single to promote it in "4 Minutes." (Of course, it also had that cover, which very well may have cost it about 100,000 or so in first-week sales.) Turns out playing at the Super Bowl helps raise awareness that you have a new album coming out. Who knew?
Right below her on the charts is Lionel Richie's similarly well-promoted country duets album Tuskegee, which features performers like Rascal Flatts, Shania Twain and Blake Shelton helping the pop troubadour out on re-recordings of his classics. At 199k sold in its first week, the album obliterates the first week of Richie's prior effort, 2009's Just Go, which peaked at a scant #24 on the charts. Meanwhile, Katy Perry's Complete Confection re-issue of Teenage Dream helps the album rebound to #7 on the charts, Adele is still hanging in there gurrrrl with 121k sold at #3, and post-post-post-grunge band Shinedown has its best sales week ever with over 100k sold of latest effort Amaryllis. And who says rock is dead?
Next week: Nicki Minaj and a bunch of other people. The only real question is how much Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded will sell in its first week at #1—we're gonna guess somewhere in the low 400ks. Enough to comfortably defeat Dr. John and Bear in Heaven anyway.