Backstreet Falls Short Of Record
By PAUL CANTIN
The Backstreet Boys are back on top of the Canadian album chart, but they failed to break *NSync's U.S. record for first-week album sales.
Prior to the release of "Black & Blue," band members had confidently predicted they would eclipse *NSync's "No Strings Attached," which enjoyed first-week U.S. sales of 2.4 million last March. While "Black & Blue" did manage to end its first week atop the U.S. charts, the record sold a comparatively modest 1,591,191.
On a brighter note, "Black & Blue" entered the Canadian album charts in first place, selling 156,307 copies in its first week of release, according to retail sales data compiled by SoundScan Canada.
That represents only a modest drop from the opening week sales of Backstreet's last album, "Millennium," which sold 191,791 upon its first week of release in May, 1999.
By comparison, the biggest-selling debut since SoundScan began measuring record sales in Canada belongs to Celine Dion, who sold over 230,000 copies of her 1997 album "Let's Talk About Love" during the album's launch week. *NSync's "No Strings Attached" enjoyed first-week Canadian sales of 104,897.
The Backstreet Boys' sales were enough to nudge "Beatles 1" from top spot this week, although the Fab Four's singles collection still managed to sell more records during its second week of release than its chart-topping debut. SoundScan Canada reports that "Beatles 1" sold 58,268 during week two, compared to 54,668 during its week of release.
International sales of Backstreet's "Black & Blue" totaled five million, which sets a new record, though no numbers were given for the previous record, the Reuters news agency reported.