Album Charts: Lionel Richie Climbs To #1, Monica Earns Top 10 Debut With ‘New Life’

Iconic singer Lionel Richie lands at #1 this week, finally climbing to to the spot with his Tuskegee during its third week out. The project sold 129,000 copies, overtaking Adele’s 21 (which holds at #2).

According to Billboard.com, the album’s sales surged over the weekend, thanks to last Friday’s (April 13) CBS special “ACM Presents: Lionel Richie & Friends in Concert.” It’s Richie’s third #1 album, his first since 1986’s Dancing on the Ceiling spent two weeks atop the Billboard 200.

A couple spots down, Nicki Minaj’s Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded falls to #3 after topping the charts last week, selling 81,000 copies (a 68% decline from first week sales). Her album features guest spots from Cam’ron, Nas, 2 Chainz, Lil Wayne, and Drake.

The highest debut on the Billboard 200 this week is Monica’s latest set, New Life, which starts at #4 with 69,000. It’s her fifth straight top 10 set. She hit #1 once, with 2003’s After the Storm.

Rounding out the top 10 is rapper/singer-songwriter Hoodie Allen, who sees his debut EP All American bow at #10 with 28,000. The former Google employee (born Steven Markowitz) released the track “You Are Not a Robot” in the summer of 2010 and quickly found viral success. His mixtape Pep Rally soon followed, as did another, Leap Year.

The last new release comes from 116 Clique founding member Trip Lee, who scored a top 20 debut with The Good Life. The album lands at #17, selling 22,000 copies in its first week.

That wraps things up this week. To cop any of these new releases, head over to Amazon.com.

According to Billboard.com, overall album sales in this past chart week (ending April 15) totaled 5.61 million units, down 12% compared to the sum last week (6.39 million) and down 11% compared to the comparable sales week of 2011 (6.32 million). Year to date album sales stand at 89.84 million, down less than 1% compared to the same total at this point last year (90.02 million).

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