Fans Clamor to Buy Whitney Houston Albums
Whitney Houston’s sudden death on February 11 led to her return to the popularity charts. Houston’s Greatest Hits album re-enters the Billboard 200 at Number 6. In addition, three of her Number One singles are back on the Hot 100 list. “I Will Always Love You” re-enters at Number 7, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)” places at Number 35 and “Greatest Love of All” comes in at Number 41.
Grammy Win Boosts Adele's Record Sales
Adele’s six Grammy wins and her return to performing after a three-month break were responsible for increased sales of her albums 19 and 21. 21 spends its 20th week at Number One and 19 jumps 10 positions to Number 9 on the Billboard 200 chart. According to Billboard, 21 is expected to sell another 500,000 to 600,000 copies in the week ending February 19. That will be enough to keep it in the Billboard 200’s top spot for a 21st week and make it the longest-running Number One album by a female artist in the chart’s history.
Madonna Scores Another Top 10 Hit
In other chart news, Madonna earns her 38th Top 10 hit this week with “Give Me All Your Luvin’.” The debut single from her upcoming MDNA album features Nicki Minaj and M.I.A. Madonna holds the record for most Top 10 songs in the Hot 100’s 53-year history. Rounding out the list of artists with the most Top 10 hits are the Beatles (34), Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder (28), Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson and Elton John (27), Elvis Presley (25), and Whitney Houston and the Rolling Stones (23).
Other Billboard News
This week’s Top 10 album debuts on the Billboard 200 chart include Van Halen’s “A Different Kind of Truth” at Number 2, “Now That’s What I Call Music 41” by various artists at Number 3, “Scars & Stories” by The Fray at Number 4, “Kisses on the Bottom” by Paul McCartney at Number 5 and “Home” by Dierks Bentley at Number 7.
Navy SEAL Movie Sountrack Features Country Stars
On February 21, Capitol Records will release the soundtrack to the Navy SEAL action-thriller Act of Valor. The album features 10 tracks by superstar Country acts, including Lady Antebellum, Sugarland, Keith Urban, Wynonna Judd, Trace Adkins and Jake Owen, among others. Act of Valor hits theaters nationwide on February 24.
New Album Releases / February 21:
“Some Nights” by Fun
“Voice of Ages” by The Chieftains
“How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?” by Sinead O’Connor
“Electric Sea” by Buckethead
“Careless World” by Tyga
“Safe House” the original motion picture soundtrack
On February 21, Mick Jagger, Keb Mo, Jeff Beck, B.B. King, and others will perform a special blues concert at the White House. The event, which celebrates Black History Month, will be filmed for the PBS television special, “In Performance at the White House: Red, White and Blues.” The show is scheduled to air on February 27.
The 2012 Country Radio Seminar (CRS) will take place February 22-24 in Nashville. The three-day event attracts Country radio programmers and personalities throughout the U.S. A highlight of the annual seminar is the New Faces of Country Music Show, which will be held on February 24. This year’s New Faces talent includes Thompson Square, the Eli Young Band, Hunter Hayes, David Nail and Sunny Sweeney.
Legendary Motown singer Smokey Robinson will turn 72 on February 19. In 1955, Robinson formed the Detroit-based vocal group The Miracles. The group made its first appearance on the rhythm-and-blues chart in 1960 with the Number One song, “Shop Around.” Robinson left The Miracles in 1972 to pursue a solo career. In 1987, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and two years later, received the Grammy Living Legend Award. Smokey was presented with a Kennedy Center Honor in December 2006. That same year, he recorded Timeless Love, which includes his renditions of 13 jazz, big band and pop standards. Smokey’s latest album, Time Flies When You’re Having Fun, was released in 2009. Guests on the collection include Joss Stone, India Arie and Carlos Santana.
R&B singer Rihanna celebrates her 24th birthday on February 20. Born Robyn Rihanna Fenty in Barbados, she was signed to Def Jam Records after auditioning for the label’s president Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter. Rihanna describes her music as “mostly Caribbean beats mixed with R&B.” Her debut album, Music of the Sun, was released in 2005. Its first single, “Pon De Replay,” reached Number One on the Billboard dance chart. Rihanna’s second album, A Girl Like Me, spawned the hits “S.O.S.,” “Unfaithful” and “We Ride.” Her 2007 album, Good Girl Gone Bad, produced many hits, including “Umbrella,” “Shut Up and Drive,” “Hate That I Love You,” “Don’t Stop The Music,” “Take A Bow,” “Disturbia” and “Rehab.” In 2009, Rihanna recorded her fourth album, Rated R. Its first two singles, “Russian Roulette” and “Hard,” reached the Top 10. Last year, Rihanna won the Best Dance Recording Grammy Award for “Only Girl (In The World).” Also in 2011, she received the Best International Female Solo Artist trophy at the BRIT Awards. Rihanna earned the highest-first week sales of her career with her fifth album, Loud. The set sold 207,000 copies its first week of release in November 2010. Last year, Rihanna spent 10 weeks at Number One on the Hot 100 chart with “We Found Love,” the lead single from her latest album, Talk That Talk. The track features Scottish singer Calvin Harris.
Singer Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys will turn 37 on February 20. Born in Lexington, Kentucky, Brian was 18 when he flew to Orlando, Florida to audition for the pop vocal group. The Backstreet Boys’ 1997 debut album sold more than 14 million copies in the U.S. and included such hits as “Quit Playing Games (With My Heart),” “As Long As You Love Me” and “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back).” Their second CD, Millennium was released in 1999 and went on to sell more than 13 million copies in the U.S. Hits from the album included “Larger Than Life,” “I Want It That Way” and “Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely.” The Backstreet Boys’ next CD, Black & Blue, was released in 2000. In 2005, the Backstreet Boys recorded the album Never Gone. That same year, Littrell signed a recording deal with the gospel music label Reunion Records, which released his solo debut album, Welcome Home (You). Its title track was a Number 2 hit on the Christian chart. This Is Us is the Backstreet Boys’ latest album. It produced only one minor hit, “Straight Through My Heart.” On April 20, the Backstreet Boys will begin an overseas tour with New Kids on the Block. They’ll perform 26 shows throughout Europe, Australia and Indonesia.
Welsh singer Charlotte Church celebrates her 26th birthday on February 21. Born in Cardiff, Wales, Charlotte was only 12 years old when she came to international attention with her 1998 debut album, Voice of An Angel. Her next three albums incorporated a wide variety of music styles, from Broadway musical tunes, opera and chamber music, to Gaelic airs and contemporary songs. In 2003, Charlotte made her film debut in the comedy I’ll Be There, the story of a washed-up 1980s pop star who finds out he has a teenage daughter (Church’s role). The movie was poorly received in England and pulled out of theaters after only a two-week run. The film never made it into U.S. theaters, but was released on DVD in 2004. In 2005, Charlotte made her pop music debut with the album Tissues and Issues. She wrote seven of its 12 tracks. All four of the album’s singles were Top 10 hits on the U.K. chart. In 2007, she and Welsh rugby player Gavin Henson, welcomed their first child, Ruby Megan Henson. In 2009, Charlotte gave birth to their son, Dexter Lloyd Henson. The couple split in May 2010. From 2006 to 2008, Charlotte hosted her own entertainment television show. In 2010, her first album in five years, titled Back to Scratch, was released in the U.K.
On February 21, Country singer-songwriter Mary Chapin Carpenter turns 54. Born in New Jersey, she later moved to the Washington, D.C. area where she performed in folk clubs. In 1989, Carpenter made her chart debut with “How Do,” from her first album State Of The Heart. Her hits since then include “Down at the Twist and Shout,” “I Feel Lucky” and “Passionate Kisses.” Carpenter was named the Country Music Association’s Female Vocalist of the Year in 1992 and 1993. Following the release of her 1996 album A Place in the World, she took a three-year break from recording. Carpenter returned in 1999 with “Party Doll and Other Favorites.” It contains live versions of many of her hits, as well as tracks she recorded for benefit albums, soundtracks and tributes. Carpenter also included two new songs on the CD. Her 2001 album, Time, Sex, Love, produced only one single, “The Simple Life.” Mary Chapin married contractor Timmy Smith in July of 2002. In 2006, she signed a new recording deal with Zoe/Rounder Records. The next year, Mary Chapin suffered a pulmonary embolism and was forced to cut short a concert tour in support of her album, “The Calling.” Her latest collection, “The Age of Miracles,” reached Number One on Billboard’s Folk Albums chart. Mary Chapin recently announced that her next album, Ashes and Roses, will be released on June 12.
British pop singer James Blunt will celebrate his 38th birthday on February 22. Blunt was born into a military family and spent six years with the British Army. After leaving the Army in 2002, he was discovered by songwriter/producer Linda Perry at the South By Southwest Festival in Texas. She signed Blunt to her label, Custard Records, which released his debut album, Back To Bedlam. In 2005, he topped Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and many other charts around the world with “You’re Beautiful.” The album also produced the Top 10 hit, “Goodbye My Lover.” Blunt’s second album, All the Lost Souls, was released in 2007. Its hits included “1973” and “Carry Me Home.” His latest album, Some Kind of Trouble, failed to produce any hits on the U.S. charts.
On February 23, singer/guitarist Johnny Winter will turn 68. In the 1960s, he established himself as a prominent session musician and later toured with bluesman Muddy Waters. Winter appeared on the pop charts twice in the early 1970s with his versions of Chuck Berry’s “Johnny B. Goode” and the Rolling Stones’ “Jumpin’ Jack Flash.” He was inducted into the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame in 1988. In 2004, Virgin Records released his latest studio album, I’m A Bluesman. The collection earned a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Blues Album. Filmmaker Greg Olliver is traveling with him this year to make a documentary for release in 2013. Johnny’s 2012 tour to support his latest album Roots begins in Romania on February 23. Forty-seven shows are scheduled in Europe, North America and Japan through June 24.
Canadian singer Daniel Powter will celebrate his 41st birthday on February 25. In 2005, Daniel recorded the Number One international hit “Bad Day.” The piano-driven pop song topped charts in four countries and was a Top 10 hit in ten others. The track was used in a commercial for Coca-Cola in Europe and also during the elimination rounds of the fifth season of American Idol. In 2006, Daniel was named Best New Artist at the Juno Awards (Canada’s equivalent of the Grammys). He recorded his latest album, Under the Radar, in 2008.
February 25 marks the birth date of the late former Beatle George Harrison (b. 1943). The British guitarist formed his first group at age 13. Two years later, he teamed with John Lennon and Paul McCartney in The Quarrymen. Later renamed The Beatles, Harrison performed with the group until it disbanded in 1970. That same year, his debut solo album was released, which spawned the Number One hit, “My Sweet Lord.” In 1971, he organized the “Concert For Bangla Desh,” a benefit for East Pakistan’s starving population. The event featured performances by Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton, Badfinger, and others, and generated a hit album and single. In 1988, Harrison joined The Traveling Wilburys, a group that also included Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynn. Harrison lost his battle with cancer in November of 2001.
Look Who's Going On Tour!
The Dave Matthews Band has announced its return to touring after a year-long break from the road. Dates begin on May 18 in Woodlands, Texas. The group’s eighth studio album is due out later this year. According to Billboard Boxscore, the Dave Matthews Band’s 2010 tour grossed more than $61 million and sold more than one million tickets.