1) Drake hit the big time for the fourth time in his career. Surprise album If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late debuts commandingly atop the Billboard 200. Was there any doubt? Nothing Was The Same also sees a bump (#87 to #70) as does Take Care (#103 to #76).
2) The Fifty Shades of Grey Soundtrack may have had its vibe killed a bit by Drake’s surprise album, but a robust opening at #2 is nothing to shed tears about.
3) Sam Smith continues to be a force to be reckoned with on the Billboard 200. In it’s 35th week on the chart, it is #3. Sam doing work!
4) Taylor Swift fell to new lows on the Billboard 200 – #5! Even though 1989 fell out of its stronghold in the top 3, it still saw gains.
5) Beck can thank his win for Album of the Year for his ascent back into the top 10. Morning Phase rises from #39 to #8 in its 29th week on the charts.
6) Unsurprisingly, 2015 Grammy Nominees rises from #15 back into the top 10 at #9. This won’t last, but following the Grammys, doesn’t it make sense for the Grammy Nominees compilation to rise in sales/impact?
7) Nicki Minaj spends her first week outside of the top 10 since The Pinkprint debuted in late 2014. Minaj fell from #8 to #12.
8) Sia reenters the top 20 as 1000 Forms of Fear rises from #23 to #15, 29 weeks into its chart tenure.
9) Father John Misty’s brilliant sophomore album I Love You, Honeybear debuts at #17.
10) Ricky Martin debuts at #20 with his latest Latin album, A Quien Quiera Escuchar.
11) Both Diana Krall and Bob Dylan take tumbles in their second week on the Billboard 200. Krall’s Wallflower falls from #10 to #21, while Dylan’s Shadows In The Night tumble from #7 to #22.
12) Fifth Harmony had a worse sophomore week than Krall or Dylan, tumbling from #5 to a modest #27 – nothing “Bo$$” about that!
13) To his credit, Nick Jonas keeps hanging around on the Billboard 200. This week, Nick Jonas modestly improves from #34 to #33.
14) Of course she reenters the chart – Annie Lennox that is? Did anyone hear how that woman slaughtered (in a good way) “I Put A Spell On You”? Nostalgia reappears at #40, spending a modest total of just 8 weeks on the charts.
15) Miranda Lambert’s energetic performance of “Little Red Wagon,” not to mention a win for Best Country Album helped her in the sales department as Platinum improves from #51 to #42.
16) ‘Course, you don’t even have to be nominated for a Grammy to see your sales rise. AC/DC’s hellishly good performance of “Highway To Hell” was fuel for the fire for the band’s sales. Rock or Bust improved from #54 to #43. Rock on! Interestingly enough, Back In Black lost support, falling from #73 to #87.
18) Rhiannon Giddens debuts at #53 with her solo album, Tomorrow Is My Turn.
19) Ohio’s Walk The Moon has been an interesting chart case study. Sometimes they look ‘dead and gone’ while others they look reinvigorated. This week they are reinvigorated as TALKING IS HARD rises from #83 to #57.
20) Pharrell Williams sees his G I R L rise after a couple of ‘upset’ Grammy wins over Beyoncé and Sam Smith/John Legend. Williams rises from #117 to #78.
21) Has the shock factor of Marilyn Manson wore off on people? Apparently as The Pale Emperor continues a nasty slide down the charts, this time from #55 to #80. Four weeks in it appears MM’s latest is ironically going down the way of the fiery pit… just saying!
22) When it comes to the NCAA Basketball Tournament, we talk about being on the “wrong side of the bubble.” For The Decemberists, they are on the wrong side of sales, the chart, and everything. What A Terrible World, What A Beautiful World dropped 44 spots (#59 to #103).
23) Not many folks are doing much worse than Marilyn Manson or The Decemberists, with the exception of Joey Bada$$. He truly laid a commercial egg with B4.Da.$$, which free falls from #74 to #117 or the equivalent of a 43 spot drop.
24) Why aren’t y’all “listening to the man?” George Ezra has a lot to offer, but one of those things isn’t commercial success. His debut Wanted On Voyage is a bomb to the nth degree, falling 44 spots from #80 to #124. This is the set’s third week on the chart!
25) Fabolous actually had some good fortune! The Young OG Project improved from #169 to #132. That’s not saying much mind you, but still. Go LOSO!