Grammy boost for Hancock

Times Staff Writer

This week’s national album sales chart is all about the Grammy bump. Well, almost.

Surfer-turned-singer-songwriter Jack Johnson stayed atop the wave another week despite a 50% drop in sales during the second week of release for “Sleep Through the Static,” which sold 180,000 copies.

And missing in action from the chart is the 25th-anniversary release of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” which sold 166,000 copies, second only last week to Johnson’s album. It shows up on the catalog album listing, not the Top 200 sales chart, because it’s more than 2 years old.


But after that, it’s Grammy, Grammy, Grammy news, with five-time award winner Amy Winehouse and surprise album of the year honoree Herbie Hancock getting the biggest jumps. Winehouse’s “Back to Black” leaped from No. 24 last week to No. 2 on a 368% sales increase, while Hancock’s Joni Mitchell tribute, “River: The Joni Letters,” skyrocketed from No. 159 to No. 5 with a tenfold sales boost. Even so, the jazz collection has still sold only 114,000 copies to date, far less than most previous album of the year Grammy winners.

Following tradition, those who had prominent on-air performances did as well or better than those who won awards but didn’t perform on the Feb. 10 Grammy show on CBS. Alicia Keys’ “As I Am” album moved up to No. 3 with a 36% sales increase.

Taylor Swift’s debut album moved up three slots to No. 7 with a 35% bump, and John Legend’s “Live From Philadelphia,” which had dropped 35 positions the previous week, rebounded 50 slots, landing at No. 12, with a 209% increase spurred by his Grammy show appearance.

The Foo Fighters scored a 160% spike that pushed the group’s “Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace” album from No. 65 to No. 22. The Eagles’ “Long Road Out of Eden,” which added another Grammy to the group’s take, rose 10 spots to No. 16, sales up 60%.

Still, despite all the beneficial Grammy fallout, only the top three albums -- and “Thriller” -- sold more than 100,000 copies each.