HITS Daily Double
"The potency in every genre of music is undeniable. Needless to say, no one’s getting much sleep around here."
——Polly Anthony, ERG President


A Heroic Tale Of One Label’s Releases for the Last 120 Days of 2001
They’ve got rockers, rappers, neo-soul divas, bands on the run, legends, jokers, a Latin star making her English language bow and, oh yeah, the King of Pop.

Epic Records’ impressive 4Q slate—which includes releases from Michael Jackson, Macy Gray, Incubus, Ghostface Killah, Jill Scott, Ozzy Osbourne and Shakira—is so promising, ERG President Polly Anthony even took our call… after we told her we were Peter Bart.

"This holiday season will be the strongest in our history," Anthony says. "The potency in every genre of music is undeniable. Needless to say, no one’s getting much sleep around here. Until we read your little website, that is."

Exec. VP/GM Steve Barnett is also bullish. "When you look at the schedule, it’s veterans, newcomers, superstars, people who haven’t had releases in a while. Each of these records is special. And we should have a major carryover from Jennifer Lopez, Ginuwine and Fuel. It’s a real credit to this company’s A&R vision."

—Michael Jackson: Although a release date has not yet officially been set, the King of Pop’s new album, Invincible, his first studio effort since 1991’s Dangerous, is anticipated before the end of the year, with the first single, the Rodney Jerkins-produced "You Rock My World," co-written by Rodney, Michael, Fred Jerkins III, LaShawn Daniels and Nora Payne.

—Toploader: U.S. bow for U.K. band whose Onka’s Big Moka went triple-Platinum in Britain. (9/4)

—Ben Folds: Solo debut, Rockin’ the Suburbs, with video for title track directed by Weird Al Yankovic. (9/11)

—Stone Gossard: The Pearl Jam guitarist’s solo project, Bayleaf. (9/11)

—Jamiroquai: A Funk Odyssey is the act’s fifth album, with the previous four selling a combined 16 million worldwide. (9/11)

—Macy Gray: Long-awaited sophomore album, The id, produced by Rick Rubin, succeeds ’99’s triple-Platinum-plus debut, On How Life Is. (9/18)

—Tenacious D: Debut Dust Bros.-produced album from HBO comic duo featuring Jack Black, with cameos by Dave Grohl and others. (9/25)

—Ozzy Osbourne: Reunites with guitarist Zakk Wilde for his first studio LP in six years. (10/16)

—Flickerstick: Welcoming Home the Astronauts, the in-die album by the winner of VH1’s Bands on the Run, was remixed by Tom Lord-Alge. (10/16)

—Incubus: The Scott Litt-produced Morning View, follow-up to the Epic/Immortal act’s double-Platinum bow, Make Yourself, has already spawned the Rock hit "I Wish You Were Here." (10/23)

—Dope: Soph album Life follows up Felons and Revolutionaries, which sold more than 200k copies OTC. (10/30)

—Shakira: Laundry Service is the English language debut for the Grammy Award-winning Colombian superstar, who has sold 3.4 million copies of her debut and 1.1 million of an MTV Unplugged album. (11/6)

—Ruff Endz: Sophomore album from R&B duo whose first single, "Cash, Money, Cars, Clothes," is already on the radio. (11/6)

—Jill Scott: A live album from this year’s U.S. tour and the follow-up to her Grammy-nominated debut, Who Is Jill Scott? (11/13)

—Ghostface Killah: Wu-Tang member’s RZA/Alchemist-produced Cuban Linx II: Bulletproof Wallets features Raekwon, Method Man, ODB and Carl Thomas. (11/13)

—B2K: Produced by Jermaine Dupri, among others, these young R&B newcomers have released their first single, "Uh Huh." (11/20)