It was not a good week for real music on the pop charts.
John Legend has had a sales disaster with his “Bigger Love” album. The problem is, there’s no single. Legend is obviously talented and charismatic. But no one guided that album for an audience. He can do so much better.
“Bigger Love” has now sold a total of just 13,200 CDs and downloads according to AlphaData/Buzz Angle Music. With streaming counted in, “Bigger Love” has sold the equivalent of 33,000 copies.
For its second week, “Bigger Love” fell off the top 50 completely, gone. Guhbye. Without a tour, there’s no way to revive it. It’s not like “Bigger Love” had no marketing. There was plenty of attention in the press and on TV. But there was nothing to latch onto. For his next project, John has to have some interesting collaborations, and some hooks to the songs.
Columbia Records suffered also with Bob Dylan’s highly praised “Rough and Rowdy Ways.” Here’s a GREAT album but marketing options are limited. Still, Bob did a NY Times interview, he had lots of press. The album has sold just over 60,000 copies, with little to no streaming. Dylan’s planned summer tour would have pushed sales to 100,000 but that can’t happen. Sony can still concentrate on “I’ve Made My Mind Up to Give Myself to You” as a single, maybe even do a video of like minded artists singing it.
Meanwhile, the good news for Sony, I guess, is that Beyonce’s “Black Parade” has streamed enough to make 99,000 in sales. It’s not huge, but it’s something. The question now is whether “Black Parade” will turn up on Beyonce’s imminent “visual album” for DisneyPlus, and if there will be a companion CD, and if it will be on Sony, which so far hasn’t been mentioned in Beyonce’s press releases.
Columbia Records’ big story for the week was the revival of Harry Styles’ “Fine Line” album with sales of 32,000 up 6% from last week. “Fine Line” is top 5 now, after drifting away. “Fine Line” has sold 145,000 copies in CDs and downloads, but with streaming the number is a whopping 775,000. Styles’ tour was sold out but had to be cancelled. A lot of money, effort, and time have been put into making Harry Styles a Big Pop Star. He may be the Last Pop Star. But it’s working. We must give credit where it’s due!