Beyonce’s ‘4’ Tops Album Chart With Un-Diva-Like Sales Following Leak

The good news for Beyonce: 4 has gone straight in at #1 on the Billboard Top 200, marking her fourth consecutive chart-topping solo LP. The bad news for Beyonce: with first week sales of 317,000, it’s the “Best Thing I Never Had” diva’s lowest opening number out of her four #1 albums. (Blame it on the fact that the record leaked online three weeks ahead of its actual release date.) Despite how you look at it, 4 still managed to post better out-of-the-gate sales than such other high-profile 2011 releases as Chris Brown’s F.A.M.E. (270,000) and Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale (276,000), and the album now has the third-highest debut of the year, behind Lady Gaga’s Born This Way (1.1 million) and Adele’s 21 (352,000). Billboard also notes that Bey is only the third act ever (after Britney and DMX) to see their first four albums debut at #1.

That brings us to “Love You Like A Love Song” singer Selena Gomez and her band the Scene, who see When The Sun Goes Down, whose third album in just under two years, debuts at #4 after posting best-ever first week sales of 78,000.

American Idol Season 7 winner David Cook, however, doesn’t fare as well. Billboard points out that the #7 debut and 46,000 sold of his LP This Loud Morning is a far cry from the #3 debut and 280,000 his first post-Idol album moved in 2008. Of course, back then he also had the strength of Top 20 singles “Light On” and “The Time Of My Life” — both of which eventually went Platinum — behind his LP.

Finally there’s this year’s AI winner Scotty McCreery, whose Walmart-exclusive EP of song highlights from the previous season of the talent competition rounds out the Top 10.

Looking ahead, next week we find out if Beyonce’s album can maintain some longevity now that “Best Thing I Never Had” is finally making headway in sales following her recent TV performances of the single.

The Top 10 of Billboard’s Top 200 chart:

1. Beyonce, 4 *new**1 week* 2. Adele, 21 3. Big Sean, Finally Famous *new* 4. Selena Gomez & The Scene, When The Sun Goes Down *new* 5. Jill Scott, The Light Of The Sun 6. Jason Aldean, My Kinda Party 7. David Cook, This Loud Morning *new* 8. Jackie Evancho, Dream With Me 9. Bad Meets Evil, Hell: The Sequel 10. Scotty McCreery, American Idol Season 10 Highlights *new*