Beyonce’s ‘Renaissance’ Blasts to U.K. No. 1

It’s official: Beyonce’s Renaissance era is off to flying start on both sides of the Atlantic.

Bey’s new album blasts to No. 1 on the Official U.K. Albums Chart for her fourth solo leader there, and first since Lemonade squeezed its rivals back in 2016.

The superstar U.S. singer does it with relative ease, as her seventh studio set outsells its closest competition by a ratio of 3:1, the Official Charts Company reports. Renaissance (via Columbia/Parkwood Entertainment) is also the market-leading LP on wax.

Previously, Beyonce led the national albums survey with Dangerously in Love (from 2003), 4 (2011) and Lemonade, and as a member of Destiny’s Child with Survivor (2001).

Renaissance also rules the sales charts in Australia and the United States, where it races to 332,000 equivalent album units, 2022’s biggest week yet by a woman.

Meanwhile, U.S. singer and songwriter Maggie Rogers lands her first Official Albums Chart Top 10 with her sophomore studio effort Surrender (Polydor), new at No. 6. That’s well ahead of Rogers’ debut LP Heard It in a Past Life from 2019, which peaked at No. 25.

Also new to the chart this week is Orbital’s 30 Something (London Music Stream), which lands at No. 19 for the electronic act’s tenth Top 40 title.

Several releases enjoy chart renaissances, thanks to the power of the touring, film and TV.

With the Weeknd on the road for his After Hours til Dawn Tour, the Canadian R&B star’s career retrospective The Highlights (Republic Records/XO) rises 5-4; Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour (Geffen) lifts 6-5, as she marks her return to Disney’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series; Elvis Presley’s 20-year-old hits compilation ELV1S – 30 Number 1 Hits (RCA) rises 13-12, driven by Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic; and Kate Bush’s 1986 collection The Whole Story (Rhino) vaults 65-28, off the back of Stranger Things, which prominently featured her classic song “Running Up That Hill.”

Megan Thee Stallion Shows Off Her Acting Chops as Tina Snow on Starz’s ‘P-Valley’

Megan Thee Stallion is a Grammy-winning rapper, a Texas Southern University graduate and now, an actress.

The “Pressurelicious” rapper made a guest appearance in the penultimate episode of P-Valley on Sunday night (Aug. 7), playing the role of Tina Snow on the Starz series.

In addition to the guest-starring role, Megan wrote and recorded an original song for P-Valley‘s second season. For the new episode, Tina Snow and Lil’ Murda — played by J. Alphonse Nicholson — perform together at the Pynk strip club.

The critically acclaimed series tells the story of a strip club located deep in the Mississippi Delta and the big characters who enter its doors. Season 2 takes audiences deeper into the lives of the Pynk’s beloved characters as darkness descends upon Chucalissa.

Megan Thee Stallion on 'P-Valley'

Megan Thee Stallion on ‘P-Valley’

OG Hotties know that Tina Snow is not just a random character name but, in fact, Meg’s musical alter ego and the title of her 2018 EP. Back in the day, a then-unknown Tina Snow even auditioned to be on VH1’s Love & Hip-Hop.

If you missed Sunday’s episode when it premiered or don’t have cable, the episodes are available to watch online via a Starz membership that costs $3 a month for six months for anyone planning to join for the first time. Alternatively, the show is available to stream on Hulu. The streaming platform offers monthly and annual subscriptions, the cheapest of which is $6.99 a month (or $69.99 a year) to stream with ads.

Aside from her burgeoning acting career, Megan also just teased her possible next musical era on Instagram, sharing the definition of the word “Traumazine,” which fans are speculating is the title of her upcoming album.

Judith Durham, Late Singer of The Seekers, to Receive State Funeral

The Seekers’ lead singer Judith Durham will be remembered with a state funeral in Victoria.

State premier Daniel Andrews announced on social media that, after speaking with Durham’s family, they accepted the offer of a state funeral to “honor the life and contribution of a true icon of Australian music.”

 

Durham died in Melbourne last Friday (Aug. 5), aged 79, after suffering complications from a long-standing lung condition.

Following her passing, prime minister Anthony Albanese led tributes, describing Durham as “a national treasure and an Australian icon” and a singer who “gave voice to a new strand of our identity and helped blaze a trail for a new generation of Aussie artists.”

 

The folk-pop trailblazers became the first Australian act to top the U.K. singles chart when their 1965 song “I’ll Never Find Another You” peaked out at No. 1.

Later that year, they hit the top spot again in the U.K. with “The Carnival Is Over.” In the space of just two years, they grabbed six U.K. top 10 hits, including their best-known track “Georgy Girl,” which was nominated for an Academy Award for original song and reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100.

In March 1967, at the peak of their powers, the group performed to an audience of 200,000 — still considered the biggest concert crowd in the southern hemisphere. Also during 1967, they were named “Australians of the Year.”

Durham embarked on a solo career in 1967, and reunited with the band on several occasions, including in 2013, for the Seekers’ 50th anniversary tour. Those best-laid plans, however, took a back seat when Durham suffered a cerebral hemorrhage.

She recovered, and the following year Durham and her bandmates Athol Guy, Keith Potger and Bruce Woodley were individually recognized as Officers of the Order of Australia.

The Seekers were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 1995, they received the Ted Albert Award for outstanding services to Australian music at the APRA Awards in 2013, and they’ve had a stamp issued in their honor.

Amy Grant ‘Making Progress Every Day’ After Bike Accident That Left Her Unconscious for 10 Minutes

Amy Grant‘s bike accident left her unconscious for nearly 10 minutes and with a concussion, but her team says her recovery is going well.

Grant was hospitalized on July 27 after she fell while on a bicycle ride with friends in Nashville.

“She is making progress every day,” a rep for Grant told Billboard on Sunday (Aug. 7). “As Vince has announced during his concerts at the Ryman, she has a concussion and has needed a lot a lot of downtime and peace and quiet to recover. When she hit the pothole she was thrown from her bike and hit her head hard and was knocked out for about 10 [minutes] before being transported to the hospital by ambulance. Every day she gets stronger and more alert/energetic.”

Vince Gill, the singer’s husband, addressed Grant’s accident Saturday night (Aug. 6), during his four-night residency at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

Gill welcomed the couple’s daughter Corinna to the stage to sing “When My Amy Prays” for Grant; Corinna changed the lyrics of the chorus to “when my mama prays.”

“We’re gonna do this song that I wrote for my wife, Amy,” Gill can be heard telling the audience in a video from the show shared on Grant’s Facebook page. “We haven’t been doing it much, but because of her accident and everything she’s been going through we’ve been thinkin’ a lot about her. I thought how sweet it would be for her youngest to sing the song I wrote for her.”

See Corinna’s moving performance in honor of Grant below. Grant’s rep says that the singer — who had to cancel her own August tour dates due to her accident — hopes to resume a full schedule soon.

Beyonce’s ‘Renaissance’ Bows at No. 1 on Billboard 200 With Year’s Biggest Debut By a Woman

Beyoncé’s Renaissance blasts in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart (dated Aug. 13) with 2022’s biggest week by a woman – and the second-largest week of the year overall – as the set launches atop the chart with 332,000 equivalent album units earned in the U.S. in the week ending Aug. 4, according to Luminate.

Notably, Renaissance – Beyoncé’s seventh solo No. 1 album – is the first album released by a woman in 2022 to top the Billboard 200. The last woman at No. 1 was Adele with 30, which ruled for its first six weeks on the list (charts dated Dec. 4, 2021-Jan. 8, 2022). Notably, both 30 and Renaissance were released via Columbia Records (with Renaissance issued through Parkwood/Columbia).

Renaissance is Beyoncé’s seventh solo studio album, and first since the chart-topping Lemonade in 2016. Since then, she teamed with husband Jay-Z on The Carters’ Everything Is Love (2018), released Homecoming: The Live Album and led The Lion King: The Gift soundtrack (both in 2019; all three reached the top five of the Billboard 200). All seven of her solo studio albums have also opened atop the tally (outside of her output as part of Destiny’s Child), starting with Dangerously in Love in 2003.

Unlike Beyoncé’s last two solo albums (Lemonade and her self-titled set in 2013), Renaissance wasn’t a surprise release. The new set was announced in mid-June, preceded by its first single “Break My Soul” on June 20, and was available to purchase on physical formats (both CD and vinyl LP) by street date (July 29). Comparably, her last two solo studio sets before Renaissance were both initially available exclusively only through streamers and digital retailers, and their physical release came later.

Also, unlike her last two studio efforts, Renaissance was not ushered in alongside a longform visual component – or, in fact, any official music videos. The Lemonade project debuted initially on HBO through its same-titled film, while her self-titled effort was initially sold exclusively through iTunes accompanied by 18 music videos. As of Aug. 7, no official videos for Renaissance have been released – only lyric videos and visualizers.

Also in the new top 10 on the Billboard 200: ATEEZ, ENHYPEN and Dance Gavin Dance all score their first top 10 albums as their latest releases debut in the region, while $uicideboy$ collect its third top 10 effort with the No. 7 arrival of Sing Me a Lullaby, My Sweet Temptation.

The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units, compiled by Luminate. Units comprise album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). Each unit equals one album sale, or 10 individual tracks sold from an album, or 3,750 ad-supported or 1,250 paid/subscription on-demand official audio and video streams generated by songs from an album. The new Aug. 13, 2022-dated chart will be posted in full on Billboard‘s website on Tuesday, Aug. 9. For all chart news, follow @billboard and @billboardcharts on both Twitter and Instagram.

Of Renaissance’s 332,000 equivalent album units earned, album sales comprise 190,000; SEA units comprise 138,000 (equaling 179.06 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks), and TEA units comprise 4,000.

In 2022, the only album with a larger week, by equivalent album units earned, has been the debut frame of Harry StylesHarry’s House, which launched with 521,000 on the June 4-dated chart. Thus, Columbia has the two biggest weeks of 2022, as Harry’s House was issued through Erskine/Columbia. (As noted earlier, Renaissance has the biggest week of 2022 among albums by women. It surpasses the debut frame of Lizzo’s Special, which earned 69,000 units in the week ending July 21, reflected on the July 30-dated chart.)

Renaissance logs the largest streaming week for an album by a woman in 2022 by on-demand official streams earned, with 179.06 million. It’s also the seventh-biggest streaming debut among all albums in 2022, and Beyoncé’s largest streaming week ever. (Of note, the largest streaming week for an album by a woman in 2022 was when Doja Cat’s Planet Her collected 46.68 million streams for its songs in the tracking week ending Feb. 3, as reflected on the Feb. 12-dated chart. The previous biggest debut streaming week in 2022 for a woman was registered by Lizzo’s Special, with 37.07 million streams for its songs in the tracking week ending July 21, reflected on the July 30 chart.)

In terms of traditional album sales, with 190,000 sold, Renaissance posts the third-largest sales week for an album in 2022, and the biggest by a woman. The only bigger sales weeks so far this year were captured by the opening stanzas of Harry’s House (330,000) and BTS’ Proof (266,000).

Renaissance sold 121,000 copies on CD, 43,000 via digital downloads and 26,000 on vinyl.

Renaissance’s initial album sales figure is largely driven by direct-to-consumer sales of the album through internet retailers, with 72% of its first-week sales coming through web-based sellers (136,000 of 190,000). Those sellers included Beyoncé’s official webstore (where she sold four limited edition deluxe boxed set editions of the album containing a T-shirt and a CD – all of which are sold out).

Beyoncé’s webstore was also the exclusive seller in the tracking week of the album’s vinyl LP, which had a limited pressing and an alternative cover and sold 26,000 copies. That marks the largest sales week for an R&B/hip-hop album on vinyl by a woman in the modern era, since Luminate began tracking sales in 1991. The vinyl LP sold out on Beyoncé’s webstore before the album’s release on July 29. On Sept. 16, the album will garner a wide release on vinyl through all retailers, with expanded packaging and its standard album cover.

While Renaissance’s internet-based sales were hefty, the album would have still been No. 1 on the Billboard 200 without any sales from internet sellers. Further, the set would have been No. 1 without selling a single copy, as it still would have perched atop the list from only streaming activity (with streaming equaling 138,000 SEA units).

Finally, as noted earlier, Renaissance is the first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 by a solo woman since Adele’s 30 closed its six-week run atop the list dated Jan. 8. That 30-week gap between No. 1s is the longest the chart has been absent a No. 1 album billed to a solo woman since 2017, when there was a 31-week dry spell between Lady Gaga’s Joanne (one week at No. 1 on Nov. 12, 2016) and Halsey’s Hopeless Fountain Kingdom (June 24, 2017).

Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti falls to No. 2 on the Billboard 200 after seven nonconsecutive weeks atop the list (104,000 equivalent album units earned; up 7%). On the Aug. 20-dated chart, the album will benefit from its wide CD release on Aug. 5.

ATEEZ notch their first top 10 as The World EP.1: Movement arrives at No. 3 with 50,000 equivalent album units earned. Of that sum, album sales comprise 47,000; SEA units comprise 3,000 (equaling 4.02 million on-demand official streams of the set’s seven tracks), and TEA units comprise a negligible sum. Previously, the South Korean group had gone as high as No. 42 in 2021 with Zero: Fever Part.3.

Like many K-pop releases, the CD configuration of The World EP.1 was issued in collectible deluxe packages (eight total, including a version exclusive to indie retailers), each with a standard set of items and randomized elements (such as photocards); 97% of the album’s first-week sales were on CD. The other 3% were digital album sales (a little over 1,000). The set was not released in any other format, such as vinyl or cassette.

Morgan Wallen’s former No. 1 Dangerous: The Double Album dips 2-4 with 49,000 equivalent album units (up 1%), and Styles’ chart-topping Harry’s House falls 3-5 with 46,000 units (down 4%).

ENHYPEN lands its first top 10 album on the Billboard 200 as Manifesto: Day 1 debuts at No. 6 with 39,000 equivalent album units earned, following the set’s physical release on July 29. The six-song effort was released on July 4 via streaming services and digital retailers. Of its 39,000 units earned, album sales comprise 38,000, while SEA units comprise 1,000 (equaling 1.29 million on-demand official streams of the set’s tracks) and TEA units comprise a negligible sum.

Manifesto is the fourth top 20-charting album for the South Korean group, which previously topped out at No. 11 with Dimension: Dilemma in 2021.

The CD configuration of Manifesto was issued in collectible deluxe packages (11 total, including a version exclusively sold through Target), each with a standard set of items and randomized elements (like photocards). Effectively all of its sales for the week were on CD (a negligible number were sold via digital download); the set was not issued on any other physical format.

$uicideboy$ score their third top 10 album on the Billboard 200 as Sing Me a Lullaby, My Sweet Temptation bows at No. 7 with 37,000 equivalent album units earned. Of that sum, SEA units comprise 33,000 (equaling 45.31 million on-demand streams of the set’s tracks), album sales comprise 4,000 and TEA units comprise a negligible sum. The rap duo has previously hit the top 10 with Long Term Effects of Suffering (No. 7 in 2021) and I Want to Die in New Orleans (No. 9, 2018).

Dance Gavin Dance claims its first top 10 album on the Billboard 200 as Jackpot Juicer starts at No. 8 with 33,500 equivalent album units earned. Of that sum, album sales comprise 25,500 (the band’s best sales week ever); SEA units comprise 8,000 (equaling 10.37 million on-demand streams of the album’s tracks), and TEA units comprise a negligible sum. The album’s first-week sales got a boost from its availability across multiple color vinyl variants, and in total, the vinyl edition of the album sold 14,000 copies (the second-biggest selling vinyl set of the week behind Renaissance).

Jackpot Juicer is Dance Gavin Dance’s 11th charting effort on the Billboard 200 and fifth to reach the top 40.

Rounding out the new top 10 of the Billboard 200 are a pair of former No. 1s: Future’s I Never Liked You (falling 5-9 with 31,000 equivalent album units, down 7%) and Drake’s Honestly, Nevermind (6-10; 29,000, down 9%).

Luminate, the independent data provider to the Billboard charts, completes an exhaustive and thorough review of all data submissions used in compiling the weekly chart rankings. Luminate reviews and authenticates data, removing any suspicious or unverifiable activity using established criteria before final chart calculations are made and published. In partnership with Billboard, data deemed suspicious and unverifiable is disqualified prior to the final calculation.

Fans Choose Benny Blanco’s ‘Bad Decisions’ Feat. BTS & Snoop Dogg as This Week’s Favorite New Music

Benny Blanco‘s latest song “Bad Decisions,” featuring BTS and Snoop Dogg, has topped this week’s new music poll.

Music fans voted in a poll published Friday (Aug. 5) on Billboard, choosing the epic collaboration between the super producer, K-pop stars and rap giant as their favorite new music release of the past week.

“Bad Decisions,” the lead single from Blanco’s as-yet-untitled upcoming album, beat out new music by Calvin Harris (Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 2), WILLOW (“hover like a GODDESS”), Lauv (All 4 Nothing), DJ Khaled featuring Drake and Lil Baby (“Staying Alive”), and others.

“Bad Decisions” finds BTS’ Jin, V, Jung Kook and Jimin showing off their vocal talents and seeing what trouble they can get up to, as Snoop Dogg provides an assist in his signature laid back flow.

Placing second on the past week’s tally with almost 20% of the vote was Harris’ new album, Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 2, the follow-up to 2017’s Vol. 1. Much like the first installment, Vol. 2 pulls out all the stops and delivers a star-studded lineup, including “Potion” with Dua Lipa and Young Thug, followed by “Stay With Me” featuring Justin Timberlake, Halsey and Pharrell.

Harris’ latest project also sees unique pairings in Charlie Puth and rising dancehall star Shenseea on “Obsessed,” along with Busta Rhymes attacking the beat solo on “Ready or Not.”

See the final results of this week’s new music release poll below.

 

Lil Wayne Says ‘Tha Carter VI’ Is ‘Coming Soon’ at Young Money Reunion With Drake & Nicki Minaj

Lil Wayne is finally teasing Tha Carter VI.

The 39-year-old rapper confirmed that he’s working on the sixth installment of Tha Carter album series during the final night of Drake‘s October World Weekend on Saturday (Aug. 6) at Toronto’s Budweiser Stage.

“I’m working on Tha Carter VI, coming soon,” Weezy told the crowd during his onstage reunion with former Young Money labelmates Drake and Nicki Minaj.

Lil Wayne’s most recent album, Funeral, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in February 2020, earning the hip-hop star his fifth leader on the chart. He previously topped the Billboard 200 with Tha Carter V (2018), Tha Carter IV (2011), I Am Not a Human Being (2010) and Tha Carter III (2008).

Saturday’s show, which had been delayed a week after Drake tested positive for COVID-19, launched with a video screen message stating that Lil Wayne “had some troubles at the border. Luckily, Drake runs the border.” The Young Money owner then delivered a hits-filled set, including collaborations with Drizzy and Minaj.

Drake also took time during the performance to give Lil Wayne a special shout-out for helping build his massive career. “You’re the most important man to each and every one us,” the Toronto MC told Weezy, “You are truly the most selfless man on planet earth.”

October World Weekend is a three-day festival that aims to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Drake’s OVO Fest and set up a global run for the festival in 2023. This year’s performances also featured Lil Baby, Chris Brown, scores of unsung Canadian music heroes, and a surprise appearance from Nelly Furtado.

The festival is the just the latest success for Drake. In July, the hip-hop star scored his 11th No. 1 title on the Billboard 200 with the debut of Honestly, Nevermind, featuring singles “Sticky” and “Massive.”

Watch Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter VI announce on Instagram here.