HITS Daily Double


Aiken to Spend Second Week at the Top; Stewart’s Set to be Highest Debut
Looks like Clay Aiken’s Measure of a Man (RCA) will just keep growing and growing.

Ahem. Now that we have that out of our system, according to early reports from national accounts, Aiken’s debut will continue uncontested at #1 next week. Even if his sales fall off by more than 50% to around 300k, his total will still be about twice that of his closest competitor.

That said, the top debut on next week’s chart will be Rod Stewart’s As Time Goes By...The Great American Songbook: Volume II (J Records), which at this point is on track to move about 150k. But don’t forget, he’s on Oprah tomorrow, and Oprah sells records (just look what she did for Babs this week). So that number could go up.

With Aiken at the top and Stewart making a solid bow, BMG is looking at yet another big week after three straight with five in the Top 10.

Also hitting the streets yesterday was The Eagles’ two-disc Very Best Of (Warner Strategic Marketing). Early reports point to first-week sales of about 100k.

Next week has one strong front-running release to look forward to from The Strokes (RCA). Barring huge numbers from them, Aiken stands a solid chance of remaining at #1 for three weeks running.

Meanwhile, the week after next (11/4) is shaping up to be the next Super Tuesday of the season, with releases from Sarah McLachlan (Arista), Jah Rule (Murder Inc./IDJ), P.O.D. (Atlantic), Toby Keith (DreamWorks), Now 14 (Columbia) and a live Coldplay set (Capitol).