Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Justin Timberlake Sells 980k Albums in First Week, Just Misses 1 Million


Justin Timberlake proves hard work pays off. His “20/20 Experience” just missed selling 1 million copies in its first week. Sales totaled 980,222. Ouch! That was through Sunday. By now it”s crossed the finish line. Derivative? Yes. But it’s music closer to something real than anyone’s heard in a long time. While I — and many critics– may not like the whole thing– Timberlake is great on style, low on substance– you can still admire the polyurethane slickness of the production. The problem is that “20/20” addresses nothing and is about nothing so much as trying to look cool and stay cool. Does Timberlake think anything? I’m sure he does. But there’s no reflection of it in the album. The great soul music he wants to emulate from the 70s was rarely pointless. Much of it had to do with civil rights and the disappointment about Nixon, Watergate, and Vietnam. If Justin Timberlake wants to be Marvin Gaye, then listen to “What’s Going On,” not just “Let’s Get it On.” But still, no can deny the accomplishment of selling a million CDs in one week. And now we have so much good music coming this spring.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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