'N Sync's New Album: Stellar Sales

‘N Sync now holds both the gold and silver medals for first-week album sales. The boy band’s latest CD, “Celebrity,” sold 1.9 million copies in the week following its July 24 release — a figure that places it second only to the group’s last CD, “No Strings Attached,” which sold a colossal 2.4 million its first week of release in March 2000. The mega-success of the Jive release shoved Alicia Keys from the top spot that she had held for the three previous weeks. Moreover, ‘N Sync sold 10 times more albums than she did. Beforehand, industry observers were not sure whether or not the new, more-mature sound of ‘N Sync was going to click with listeners. Now it appears, the new sound may have helped. “I had no idea what it was going to sell before it hit stores,” Geoff Mayfield, who tracks Billboard’s charts, told reporters. “It was kind of hard to predict because (the dance-oriented hit single) ‘Pop’ was not the kind of song to kick off a record that ‘Bye, Bye, Bye’ was.” The stellar sales of the CD come hot on the heels of rival boy band Backstreet Boys’s announcement that their current promo tour has been placed on further hold due to singer A.J. McLean’s extended stay in a rehab facility (for another two weeks). He is being treated for alcohol and depression, the group announced. Conceivably, “Celebrity” could overtake Backstreet Boys’s spring release, “Black and Blue,” which has sold a total of 5.2 million.

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