Leading up to the biggest super Tuesday that hip-hop has witnessed in a long time next week (May 19) with new releases from Eminem, Busta Rhymes, DJ Drama, and Redman and Method Man, rappers in the top 40 on the Billboard 200 continues to be very scarce.

Holding on tight to his top 10 status at no. 8 is the boss Rick Ross. The Miami rapper’s third album Deeper Than Rap continues to slide down the charts in its third week moving down four slots and dippng 32% in sales. Selling around 34,800 discs this week, his grand total now sits at 244,000 according to the Nielsen SoundScan.

The next rap release does not appear again until Jadakiss’ The Last Kiss album, which landed at the no. 34 position this week. The Yonkers, New York MC’s Def Jam debut continues to keep registers ringing in his fifth week, bagging up 15,900 CDs and bringing his overall sales to 246,100.

Outside of the top 40, new releases by several independent artist hit shelves last week including DJ Paul of Three 6 Mafia, Rapper Big Pooh of Little Brother, a compilation by Bubba Sparxxx and DJ Greg Street and a tribute to the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard. The only album to chart in the Billboard 200 of the crop was DJ Paul, who landed at the no. 157 seat, pushing about 4,000 units of Scale-A-Thon out of the stores. The next biggest seller was North Carolina’s Big Pooh who rang up 1200 copies of his first solo effort Delightful Bars: North American Pie Version. Sparxxx and DJ Greg Street’s New South comp only managed to sell 230 CDs in their debut week while the ODB Tribure, All In Together Now Raw failed to even crack triple digits.

Next week look for Dipset Don Cam’ron [peep XXL’s predictions] and the People’s Champ Paul Wall to debut on the charts. – Elan Mancini

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