This year, on a landmark Tuesday in November, after much thoughtful debate and weighty discussion, America will make its will known in the one universal voice that speaks loudest of all: cold, hard cash.
This week, record stores across America will provide the polling stations for what is shaping up to be the music industry's Super Tuesday as Jewel, Mariah Carey, Garth Brooks, Method Man, Whitney Houston, Ice Cube and others square off in the court of consumer opinion.
Mirroring the day in politics when seven different states hold their primary elections effectively separating the presidential contenders from the also-rans, music's Super Tuesday may set the tone for the holiday shopping season.
Jewel's "Spirit," Method Man's "Tical 2: Judgement Day," Mariah's "#1s," Garth Brooks' "Double Live," Whitney Houston's "My Love Is Your Love," and Ice Cube's "War & Peace Vol. 1," will all be vying for shelf placement and a strong start this week.
Of course, most
onlookers know that first week sales aren't everything, but they will also tell you that they are pretty darn important. A good first impression is so important, in fact, that Garth Brooks and the machine surrounding him is working overtime to make sure that his new double album sells more than one million copies in its first week out, a feat no other act has managed.
Many of the acts will be stumping for support on MTV this week as part of the channel's Spankin' New Music Week (see the Music area of mtv.com for schedule information).
Will Garth hit one million? Who will win the diva vote? Can Ice Cube carry his home state of California? Will Meth upset them all? The answers to these and many other questions won't be known until next week, but you'll find them right here at MTV News Online, as well as on a special edition of "MTV News 1515" the weekend of November 27.