Drake’s ‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late’ Debuts at No. 1 in This Week’s Album Sales (2/18/2015)
After taking the hip-hop world by storm with his surprise mixtape/album, Drake's If You're Reading This, It's Too Late lands him his fourth No. 1-debuting project with 535,000 units sold according to Billboard. Dropping out of nowhere on the night of Feb. 12, the project nearly 540,000. By comparison, 2013's Nothing Was The Same sold 658,000, 2011's Take Care sold 631,000 and 2011's Take Care sold 2010's Thank Me Later sold 447,000 in their respective first weeks. Drake joins DMX as the only other hip-hop artist to have his first four projects hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart and the 535,000 units first week sales are the most for a rap artist since Eminem sold 792,000 in Nov. of 2013. If You're Reading This, It's Too Late's pure album sales were 495,000 units, which are entirely from digital sales. Drake also becomes the first rapper to be atop of the the Billboard Artist 100 chart, shooting up from 21-1 largely thanks to If You're Reading This, It's Too Late, according to Billboard. The Artist 100 is a weekly survey that measures artists' popularity across Billboard's most influential charts plus blends data measuring album and track sales, radio airplay, streaming and social media fan interaction.
Elsewhere on the chart, Drake's Young Money/Cash Money label mate Nicki Minaj continues to stay in the top-15 with another 47,593 units of The Pinkprint sold. Minaj should be hitting Gold status soon. J. Cole's 2014 Forest Hills Drive dropped one spot to No. 17; Rae Sremmurd's SremmLife fell one spot to No. 42 and D'Angelo And The Vanguard bring up the rear at No. 49. One week after debuting at No. 14, Kid Ink's Full Speed fell out of the top-50.
Expect Drake to remain near the top of the chart next week as If You're Reading This, It's Too Late maintains a strong buzz around the internet. Looking ahead, Big Sean's Dark Sky Paradise drops on Tuesday, Feb. 24 and will likely land in the top-5 to top-10 range.
1. Drake, If You're Reading This, It's Too Late, 535,000
12. Nicki Minaj, The Pinkprint, 47,593
18. J. Cole, 2014 Forest Hills Drive, 31,887
43. Rae Sremmurd, SremmLife, 15,279
49. D'Angelo And The Vanguard, Black Messiah, 12,191
*The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week based on mulit-metric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums and streaming equivalent albums.