It took 17 years, but Celine Dion is back at No. 1. The album ‘Courage,’ released by Columbia Records, is the belting diva’s fifth overall chart-topping release, and first since ‘A New Day Has Come’ in 2002, when George W Bush was in his first term and ‘A Beautiful Mind’ was in movie theatres.
Dion has released eight albums since then, in a mixture of French and English, but was blocked from the top spot on the Billboard 200 by artists like Linkin Park (2003), Alicia Keys (2007) and Eminem (2013).
Although ‘Courage’ is Dion’s first release in English since 2013, before the streaming boom, she relied on another chart advancement that has come into vogue to boost her sales: bundling albums with tickets to her live tour.
‘Courage’ sold 109,000 albums and had only 4 million streams, according to Nielsen, for a total of 113,000 units by the industry’s current math.
The next closest album was also a new release: Canadian rapper and singer Tory Lanez’s ‘Chixtape 5,’ built on samples of 2000s R&B hits by artists like Ashanti and Jagged Edge, had the week’s highest streaming tally (94 million) and sold 9,000 copies as a full album for a total of 83,000 units.
Post Malone’s ‘Hollywood’s Bleeding,’ a consistent streaming favourite, is No. 3 in its 11th week of release, earning another 82 million streams, while last week’s No. 1, ‘What You See Is What You Get’ by country singer Luke Combs, fell to No. 5.
At No. 4 is ‘Lover’ by Taylor Swift, who saw her album activity rise 48 per cent — the largest percentage uptick since the album’s release in late August — during a hectic, headline-filled week.
On November 14, she escalated her public battle over the rights to her first six albums with executive Scooter Braun via social media, just days before she was nominated for three Grammys (fewer than some expected).
The week culminated in Swift headlining the American Music Awards on Sunday, where she was named artist of the decade and collected three trophies.
In that time frame, ‘Lover’ was streamed 36 million times and sold 27,000 copies.