Santana Holds On To Top Of Album Chart In Slow Week

With the Grammy Awards still more than a month away, Carlos Santana continues to parlay his early rush of nominations into sales glory as his album "Supernatural" will remain atop the "Billboard" album chart for another week.

According to sales figures released by SoundScan on Wednesday, Santana managed to sell another 174,000 copies of "Supernatural" last week to hold on to number one on the album chart. After months of steady sales courtesy of the hit single "Smooth," the album got an additional sales goose earlier this month when it generated a total of eleven Grammy nominations (see "Santana, TLC, Backstreet Boys In Grammy Running").

One of the Santana-related Grammy nods actually goes to Matchbox 20 frontman Rob Thomas, who originally co-wrote "Smooth" for the guitarist with George Michael's vocals in mind. Of course, Santana eventually invited Thomas in to sing on it.

"I'm singing,

and I'm trying to make sure I'm not sounding like crap, and I look up, and it really hit me," Thomas told MTV News this week of his time in the studio with Santana. "I mean, that's Santana, and he's really in there, we're playing together, we're jamming right now, and I just freaked out, you know? And then, right at that second, Santana looks at me and he [nods] and I'm, like, in heaven." [RealVideo]

The guitar great and his co-conspirators faced little in the way of competition for next week's number one spot, as Celine Dion's "All The Way: A Decade Of Song" landed at number two after selling an additional 139,000 copies.

The only title in the top 20 posting a significant chart gain comes from the Italian dance outfit Eiffel 65, which rides the wave of its hit single "Blue (Da Ba Dee)" into the top ten as its album "Europop" leaps from 12 to 8.

The week's highest debut belongs to country star Mark Wills at 23, with

the next highest new entry coming from teen Canadian grindcore queens Kittie, whose "Spit" arrives at 147.

On the singles sales chart, Savage Garden manages to unseat teen pop hottie Christina Aguilera from the number one position. Savage Garden's "I Knew I Loved You" sold 89,000 copies to grab number one, bumping Aguilera's "What A Girl Wants." (It's worth noting that while "Billboard" bases its album chart directly on SoundScan's sales information, the "Billboard" singles chart reflects both sales and airplay.)

-- Robert Mancini, with additional reporting by Kara Manning

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