Saturday, May 18, 2024

Kanye’s First Week “Donda” Numbers Miss Predictions As Halsey New Release Actually Sells More Copies


It’s a tough game this album dropping business.

Kanye West carried on all summer about “Donda,” then complained that his record company released the music without his permission. (I doubt that’s true.)

The result of all this mishegos is that “Donda” first week sales were good enough to hit number 1, but less than expected.

“Donda” sold a total of 325,000 copies, which was 25K less than the prediction. Of that total only 44,311 were actual paid downloads. The rest was all streaming. In paid sales, Kanye lost to Halsey, whose new album “If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power,” sold a whopping 74,000 copies in downloads and CDs.

Halsey was actually number 1. Her fans have her music stored in their phones and computers. Kanye’s passively listened without committing emotionally. Or financially.

Kanye’s big problem is no singles. Although individual tracks streamed in big numbers the first couple of days, no individual song broke out of the pack. For an album to penetrate the audience and have legs, separate songs have to catch on. This has not happened.

Drake was smart. He sampled the Beatles, guaranteeing him something of a hit with his “Champagne Poetry.”

But this is what happens when you stall and stall and lie and carry on and don’t communicate with your record company. Kanye’s done it before and he’ll do it again.

“Donda” has already fallen to number 5 on iTunes. Hang on, the bigger drop is coming.

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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