That was enough to beat back the challenge for Senegal-turned-New Jersey rapper Akon, who rides two smash singles with Eminem and Snoop Dogg to a #2 debut with more than 286k in sales for his Konvicted album on SRC/Universal Motown.
Holdovers include last week’s chart-topping Sony Label Group entry Now 23 (#3), 143/Reprise’s Josh Groban (#4), Capitol Nashville’s Keith Urban (#5), Disney’s Hannah Montana soundtrack (#6), Mercury Nashville’s Sugarland (#8) and Universal Republic’s rock artist development story of the year, Hinder (#10).
Chart newcomers this week include Terror Squad’s Fat Joe (#12), Vector/WB Irish singer-songwriter Damien Rice (#22), Arista/RMG’s Kenny G (#37), Columbia’s James Taylor Christmas collection (#39), Flip/Atlantic’s Staind singles compilation (#41), Lava/Atl. G’s holiday perennial Trans-Siberian Orchestra (#46), WB’s Larry the Cable Guy Yule disc (#47) and Firm Music alt-rock supergroup Army of Anyone (#50).
Arista/RMG’s Sarah McLachlan album of seasonal faves, Wintersong, shows the week’s biggest increase, moving #33-17 on a 68% rise. Other double-digit gainers include Columbia’s Beyonce (#19-11, +17%), Sony Label Group’s Now Christmas Vol. 3 (#39-26, +43%), Reprise’s J.J. Cale & Eric Clapton (#27, +11%), RCA/RMG’s Christina Aguilera (#44-36, +21%) and Disney’s High School Musical (#48-43, +24%).
Next week’s releases are topped by Def Jam’s eagerly anticipated Jay-Z album, already flying out of stores, along with Apple/Capitol’s Beatles “Love” reinvention, Geffen’s Snoop Dogg, Amaru/ Interscope’s 2Pac, Columbia’s Il Divo and Interscope’s U2 singles hits CD featuring the new track recorded with Green Day.