Ain’t No Sellin’: Hip-Hop’s SoundScan Struggles

Anyone who tells you sales don’t matter…well they’re lying to you, young bucks. It’s what the music business is all about. The bottom line. Them official SoundScan numbers. Whether they’re praising New York, or swagger-jackin’ the South, all the MCs of today really want you to do is get your lazy ass of this computer and head over to Best Buy to cop their latest long player. That’s right, kids, there ain’t no Santa Claus.

And what do I do? I sit back like a piranha and wait ’til the top of Wed morning to see the previous week’s sales results. Sometimes it helps me in my decisions on who gets covers, who gets a small 2 pager or who gets jack shit. Only a privileged few usually get insight into YN’s thought process but since I got a blog to fill (I’m promising more copy than I’m delivering) I decided to share with you my random thoughts about today’s SoundScan results for the week ending 4/9/06.

Much was made last week and deservedly saw for T.I.’s impressive gold-in-one week (521K) bow, but it’s back to reality for the South’s King as he drops 65% (the average drop-off is 50%) selling 184,563 copies. Adding more salt in young pimpin’ wounds is some country group Rascal Flatts shitted on the ATLien’s accomplishment by selling
721,747. That’s right, there’s still a lot of White people in Middle America who still don’t like rap music. Who knew?

Next rapper charting is the Charm-ed debut from Mister Bubba Sparxxx (sorry for the mix-up, accept the fix-up) who sells about 51K. Good enough to crack this week’s top 10. That’s about 15 thou more than Ghostface’s second week slip. Like T.I., the media darling’s Fishscale went from 110, 055 to 36,835. God Damn! Carter Administration, holla atcha boy! Let’s have an emergency meeting.

Although marred by a series of personal tragedies, Eminem still has a “retired” music career that continues to flourish as is devoted fanatics continue to cop Curtain Call like it’s hot. He’s at 2.2., so fuck you! We doubted Chamillionaire but he continues his Revenge ridin’ past gold to the tune of 645,000 or so copies. At #45, Juve holds steady at 350K after 5 weeks while E-40 doesn’t seem to be able to follow his formidable first single’s momentum. 178 something ain’t ballarific! Lil Jon may need to yell at someone. Whhaaatttt! (Sorry I had to do it.)

A couple of steps down, Dem Franchize Boyz’ snap-crackle-pop is on its way to gold (379 in 9 weeks). If B.G. gets 10 bucks a record from Koch than he’s a millionaire ’cause his Streetz Vol. 2 is 100+ in 21 days. His nemesis, Lil Wayne is crawling to platinum; currently at 876 after about five months. The last rap act in the top 100, are them Oscar carriers Three 6 Mafia’s who now have a shot at platinum with their current 762K status. Most Known Unknowns? Not anymore.

The second half of this chart is sadder than Coach Brown and his bummy bunch. Here all you need to do is sell anywhere from 5-10,000 copies to chart and not many rappers can even do that. Yeah they still have songs played on the radio but there’s no Bow Wow, Remy Ma, or Lil Kim over here. Instead we got Paul Wall at 705K; Young Jeezy at 1.5;
Nelly’s SweatSuit double cheeseburger goes gold; Kanye’s almost triple plat; Biggie does a million (know dead rappes get better promotion); Grand Hustle’s Hustle & Flow soundtrack is at 381 while one of its stars’ comp Ludacris Presents DTP has pushed past gold; Scarface’s Homies outsell his group Product at 115; Ying Yang Twins’ fake album
is at 187, and hip-hop’s laughing stocks D4L are at 430. Laughing their way to a gold plaque.

That’s right, shorties, hip-hop seems to be goin’ back to its roots and gold is once again the standard of success. At least until hip-hop has its greatest fourth quarter in recent memory with new albums from The Game, 50 Cent, Nas, Jay-Z and, you guessed it, Dr. Dre. I can dream, can’t I? That’s 5 hot covers in a row. Screw your rap charts, I must do my numbers.

P.S. I’m paid double my salary to do this blog. Shhh! Don’t tell anyone.

  • http://xxlmag.com Bol

    >P.S. I’m paid double my salary to do this blog. Shhh! Don’t tell anyone.

    You’re a rich man. Huzzah.

  • dont worry

    What is this? SohhFAKE.com?

  • http://www.myspace.com/geoffdilkes G Off

    We can read the numbers… any thoughts why???

  • Rome

    I heard T.I went platinum today. big ups to the king.

  • http://xxl Puerto-Black

    Fuck SOUNDSCAM How many fuckin units did R.D. sell or Illmatic or SOutherplaylisticcadialic shit u no the rest. In that Case Nelly is the Fuckin man

  • isaBELLA

    They have something similar to this on SOHH.com. Get ya own style!

    And T.I did not go platinum. He only did 700K so far

  • gerv

    Anybody reading sound scan to see what albums they need to buy better not be calling themselves into Hip-Hop in any way or shape or form.Because you sound like a record company executive and not a fan of the music or the Hip-Hop community.

  • FL. BOI

    I wonder what the #’s would look like without CD burners?

  • john

    you’re wondering why CD’s like the new Ghostface isn’t selling yet you give an anti-HipHop writer like bol a blog to talk people out of buying the CD. i guarantee the readers you have here will buy less and less. anything said negative about an artist or a whole coast will always hurt sales. XXL needs to get rid of some dead weight ever since Bun B pulled his card.

  • http://www.hardrhymesandsoftdrinks.tk cb

    the ease of music piracy on the net (even without using ftp / p2p / torrents) is a factor…

  • Jeremy

    sounds alot like the Dave House Fiyyah Report. You need the Outlaw

  • http://www.myspace.com/supa_dj2mello Dj 2Mello

    i agree with the above comment!! Originalty is a good word for u fam.
    Mello

  • NYG

    Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery.

    This post is very Outlaw-ish. SLEWWWW DEEMMMM!!!!

    http://www.urbanconnects.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=74

    Good attempt…

  • T

    The labels arent planning for long term success. They push for a month or 2 and thats it. They still treat rap like shit, eventhough hip hop accounts for billions generated into this business. Album sales are always going to look at this, because like 50 said…labels are reactive.

  • http://www.djmadwax.com DJ Mad Wax

    what Dave House on YN’s blog????

  • Ian

    Yeah, but still this all goes back to what I’ve always been saying. If you’re a str8 street rapper then you’ll door poor sales compared to others, because you’re not reaching white people. Gold is cool, but still if you can do better then do it, with the way the industry is set up you need to find some way to eat. If you want to be str8 hood then you either better have a good deal with a major, sell your own stuff, or get with an independant like koch. The stupid ones that believe that what you see in these rappers videos is there then check soundscan. If they got a bad deal, sales are in the toilet, then they probably renting that stuff. That Million dollar advance you have to pay that back, and you do that with your sales. Most of these rappers are window shoppers because the money that they have either isn’t their own or they need that money to stay in the game. Big ups to Elliot Wilson for teaching these young people a little about the game. Keep doing your thing and ignore the haters you get.

  • da prince

    My boy ti king a da south is platnium now and on his way two double platnium da next single gonna be why you wanna and dats gonna be a banger 4 da summer

  • Pingback: » The Death of Hip-Hop - XXL

  • B-D

    I think piracy is ruining the hip-hop game. I have a cousin that’s been bootlegging for over 3 years and he told me that he makes a minimum of 500.00 A WEEK and that’s considered a very bad week. I’ve seen him count 1500.00 just from working Friday & Saturday. You can tell me that’s not fucking up an artists’ soundscan, when he has the album a week before it come out.

  • http://www.myspace.com/kingjaewar King Jae War

    Like it was said above. When it comes to hip hop the record labels are reactive. Plus piracy probly hurts hip hop more than other genres. That being said, support the new label @ http://www.INYABOYz.com
    Peace!

  • http://www.cruzonerecords.com Shaun Cruz

    Thanks for the update it was a good indication of who is doing what and also which techniques for promotion are not working. I am certain the return to dominance in hip-hop will not come from an older hip-hop act. There has to be some newer blood pumped into the system to get the ball rolling again i.e, Lupe, Kanye, Shaun Cruz, and Kaleber plus others

  • anti rap/ REAL HIPHOP

    Someone mentioned what the numbers would be without cd burning. They would still be shit because rappers today are HOT GARBAGE. Real Hiphoppas are not affected by #’s because Rap is what we do Hip Hop is what we live.

    Love, Peace and Unity

  • Common Cents

    The reason a country band like Rascal Flats outsells hip hop is simple. Like you said, it’s older white people from the midwest BUYING the country music, people of that age aren’t very good with computers, and most of them couldn’t burn a cd without a book of matches. The majority of hip hop fans are below 35, and have grown up with computers, so we know how to get the cd’s we want without purchasing them.

  • http://www/cdbaby.com/cd/fabsaturdays2 V!RTU (the Hip-Hop Anchor)

    The Hip-Hop is fucked up because people allow themselves to be “spoon-fed”. They only know what commercial music is out because its on the radio. People pick their favorite rapper from the line-up that the radio or TV presents to them. They don’t take the time to dig deeper and find out about the good music. Good Hip-Hop is alive and well; but if a tree falls in the forest, does it make a sound? You have to be there when it all goes “down”!
    Elliot Wilson seems to be better informed than the average “listener”, but he still allows himself to be spoon-fed, but only digesting bottom line information. You must take into consideration all the sabotage and fradulence in the soundscan reports.
    If you only take action based on bottomline SoundScan results, you are perpetuating the downfall of Hip-Hop; and allowing yourself to be told (by corporate america) what good music is. ALSO the artists have some responsiblity for music piracy. The “Rappers” these days portray themselves as RICH, poor people don’t feel so bad about stealing from “RICH” people. If the guy looks like a millionaire and it’s his first video, then he must have had money before he went commercial. I wouldn’t feel bad about stealing from those guys. But the artists I listen to don’t lie about their financials, and it helps the average american relate to the artist on a personal level. This fan would save up the 15 bux I needed to support and artist that was “real” with me to begin with.
    The whole industry is fucked up, and it would take longer to fix it than it did to ruin it.

    I would like to leave you with this……Play the ‘ol school jams! The kids growing up today think that 50 cent or Nelly are Hip-Hop pioneers (They are NOT!!). Teach the children what a classic is, if we don’t start getting this straighted out at the youth level, we’re DONE!!!!

  • http://www/cdbaby.com/cd/fabsaturdays2 V!RTU (the Hip-Hop Anchor)

    The Hip-Hop is fucked up because people allow themselves to be “spoon-fed”. They only know what commercial music is out because its on the radio. People pick their favorite rapper from the line-up that the radio or TV presents to them. They don’t take the time to dig deeper and find out about the good music. Good Hip-Hop is alive and well; but if a tree falls in the forest, does it make a sound? You have to be there when it all goes “down”!
    Elliot Wilson seems to be better informed than the average “listener”, but he still allows himself to be spoon-fed, but only digesting bottom line information. You must take into consideration all the sabotage and fradulence in the soundscan reports.
    If you only take action based on bottomline SoundScan results, you are perpetuating the downfall of Hip-Hop; and allowing yourself to be told (by corporate america) what good music is. ALSO the artists have some responsiblity for music piracy. The “Rappers” these days portray themselves as RICH, poor people don’t feel so bad about stealing from “RICH” people. If the guy looks like a millionaire and it’s his first video, then he must have had money before he went commercial. I wouldn’t feel bad about stealing from those guys. But the artists I listen to don’t lie about their financials, and it helps the average american relate to the artist on a personal level. This fan would save up the 15 bux I needed to support and artist that was “real” with me to begin with.
    The whole industry is fucked up, and it would take longer to fix it than it did to ruin it.

    I would like to leave you with this……Play the ‘ol school jams! The kids growing up today think that 50 cent or Nelly are Hip-Hop pioneers (They are NOT!!). Teach the children what a classic is, if we don’t start getting this straighted out at the youth level, we’re DONE!!!!

    V!RTU “Hip-Hop Anchor” (Holdin’ It Down!)
    Fabulous Saturdays

  • Xico

    Where can we get SoundScan numbers?

    Website?

  • RANDOM PERSON

    What bullshit . . . you guys know how to be very stereotypical . . . I for one am not an old person, I know how to work a computer and do shit . . . I have friends who know that . . . we still listen to the country music stuff . . . All of these artists deserve just as much credit as rap artists . . . I’m not bashing rap or anything, but come on . . . this band, Rascal Flatts, is selling out arena after arena . . . selling 6 mil effin albums in a 3 month timespan and they’re going strong!!!! They take what’s real in life and sell it!!!! That’s why their music is selling!!!! Don’t give me any shit on piracy or anything . . . cause we all know evry1 does it!!!!!!

  • XICO

    LOL I’m pretty sure a ghetto, where maybe 95% of its citizens are near or below the poverty line do more bootlegging than country music fans.

    You can find a bootlegging corner on almost every street over here in St.Louis lol.

  • http://www.facebook.com bama

    FUCK SOUNDSCAN

  • http://www.facebook.com bama

    XICO U ARE ONE OF THEM BOOTLEGGING GHETTO BITCHES

  • Sunny

    What I Think Is Hip Hop Aint Dead Is Just Dat Rappers Dat Waz On Top Back Then Aint On Top No More And Dats Y There Sayin Hip Hop Dead Cause Da Souf Done Came Up Them Rappers Dat Think Hip Hop Is Dead They Just Mad Cause They Aint On Top Like The Waz In Da 80′s And 90′s This 2000 Now A Days Its About Money Not About Bullshit Like Back Then So Fuck U Hip Hop Still Lives Money Over Everything

  • http://none Doug

    Rap sucks. Been 30 years, almost, time for some new music.

  • listening to hip hop since 78

    now that white people are listen to hip hop
    more than ever there starting to talk and
    act like black people and thats so funny
    to see white people acting real stupid and lost!!! To all people that live in
    the hood these white HONKEYS are trying
    to take hip hop from the hood like they
    took rockin roll from black people.
    A white fony as rapper acting like a
    gangster is not real to this country when
    the system benefits the color of there skin.HONKEYS need to step the fuck off
    our music.Next time we come up with some type of music that helps us get rich remember no breaking down doors for HONKEYS.Since the begining of hip hop
    the hood always co-signed the rapper to
    make it in the game and now thats no more
    because these HONKEYS are puting there two senses in the game when they know nothing about the streets.SO FOR ALL MY
    BLACK PEOPLE PLEASE WAKE UP!!!!!!!!

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