Alicia Keys' hit single may be "Fallin'," but the 20-year-old New Yorker is showing impressive resilience on the nation's album charts.
Shaping up as the biggest Cinderella story in pop since Macy Gray's dramatic rise last year, the previously unknown singer-songwriter-producer regains the No. 1 spot on the charts by selling 222,000 copies in the album's third week in the stores.
Keys, the latest discovery by J Records Chairman Clive Davis, caught the industry off guard three weeks ago when her debut disc, "Songs in A Minor," entered the charts at No. 1 by selling 236,000 copies. The CD sold 174,000 copies last week and slipped to second behind Eminem's group D12.
Besides knocking D12's "Devil's Night" from the top spot this week, Keys' strong showing also denied Sean Combs the chance to enter the charts at No. 1 with his new album. The collection, titled "The Saga Continues ... " and credited to P. Diddy & the Bad Boy Family, sold 186,000 copies in its first week in the stores, enough for second place.
Besides Combs, the only other new arrival in the Top 10 is Melissa Etheridge's "Skin," which sold 83,000, earning ninth place.
The other positions in the Top 10 are claimed by D12 (No. 3), Staind (No. 4), Destiny's Child (No. 5), Jagged Edge (No. 6), Blink-182 (No. 7), Lil' Romeo (No. 8) and Linkin Park (No. 10).
Blu Cantrell's "Hit 'Em Up Style (Oops!)" is the nation's top-selling single.
(From The Times' album reviews)
Alicia Keys' "Songs in A Minor," J. In a striking debut, Keys moves from the funky sensuality of Prince's "How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore" to the neo-soul vitality of Macy Gray and Jill Scott. (Robert Hilburn)
P. Diddy & the Bad Boy Family's "The Saga Continues ... ," Bad Boy/Arista. The man formerly known as Puff Daddy delivers a collection with plenty of swagger, grit, sure-shot singles and a decidedly upbeat outlook. (Soren Baker)