Whitney Houston scores her best opening week in the Nielsen SoundScan era as "I Look to You" enters the Billboard 200 at No. 1 with sales of 305,000.
The album, her first of new material in seven years, far bests first week sales of that title, "Just Whitney," which sold 205,000 copies in 2002 to enter at No. 9. (Just take a moment to reflect on the fact that sales north of 200,000 barely landed an artist in the Top 10 seven years ago, where as it would ensure a No. 1 debut most weeks these days).
"I Look to You" enters charts in Canada, Germany, Italy and Switzerland at No. 1 as well, according to her label, Arista.
Houston's set is just one of six new titles entering the Top 10 this week, according to Billboard. Trey Songz' "Ready" comes in at No. 3, the Insane Clown Posse bows at No. 4 with "Bang! Pow! Boom!," rockers Chevelle land at No. 6 with "Sci-fi Crimes," rapper Pitbull's "Rebelution" bows at No. 8 and rockers The Used sneak in at No. 10 with "Artwork."
Colbie Caillat's "Breakthrough, " which was No. 1 last week, slips to No. 5.
Next week's chart is sure to be controversial since the Billboard 200 will not include the Beatles titles. They count as catalog and the Billboard 200 does not allow them on the main album chart, although they will be factored into Billboard's comprehensive chart. While they cumulatively will sell the most of any act next week, it's doubtful that any individual album will sell enough to land on the top of the Comprehensive chart. Our bet for No. 1 next week on the Billboard 200 and the Comprehensive chart is Jay Z's "The Blueprint 3."
While we expect Houston will dip in sales next week, as is customary, expect her to get another surge that could take her back to No. 1 after she appears on the "Oprah Winfrey Show" on both Sept. 14 and 15.