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Total album and single sales of CDs and cassettes for the week ended May 29, compared to week-ago and year-ago levels, in millions of units: Latest week:

Albums: 9.6 Singles: 1.8 Week-ago:

Albums: 9.5 Singles: 1.8 Year-ago Albums: 8.8 Singles: 1.9

Hits Magazine Tip of the Week Music industry executives are posturing around George Michael as the singer awaits the outcome of a British lawsuit against his record label, Sony, which could result in his freedom to sign with a new label. Michael is contending that his Sony contract is unfair due to its duration and that it constitutes a restraint of trade. Though some industry insiders believe that Michael has lost the commercial luster he packed in the late ‘80s--they cite the disappointing performance of his Queen tribute charity project for Disney’s Hollywood label--others contend that the right record would bring him back to multi-platinum status. Note: Hits magazine is a weekly music industry trade publication. Source: Soundscan Inc.