112 Nip At Shaggy's Heels

Reggae singer's Hotshot holds on to #1; R&B quartet's Part III close behind at #2.

Shaggy is still #1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, although R&B quartet 112 are turning up the heat on the popular reggae singer.

Shaggy's Hotshot sold 188,000 copies last week to hold on to the top spot, edging out 112's new album, Part III, which sold 182,000 copies to debut at #2, according to figures released by SoundScan on Wednesday (March 28).

The impressive first-week showing by Atlanta's 112 is more good news for their label, Bad Boy Entertainment, whose CEO, Sean "Puffy" Combs, was cleared of weapons possession and bribery charges by a New York jury four days before the album was released.

The Dave Matthews Band's Everyday lands at #3 after selling more than 156,000 copies last week — and apparently, fans are hungry to buy more.

Insatiable DMB-heads are pressing Matthews and his label, RCA, to issue material that was recorded with producer Steve Lillywhite last year before the Everyday sessions with Glen Ballard. Twelve of the songs have turned up on Napster, and several Dave Matthews fan sites have launched Internet campaigns to rally support for the material's release (see "Scrapped Dave Matthews Band Sessions Available On Napster").

Aside from 112, three other albums cracked the top 10 in their first week in stores — the highest of which was turned in by Miami rapper/producer Trick Daddy, whose Thugs Are Us debuted at #4 with 116,000 copies sold. Joining him are soul singer Jon B, who enters the chart at #6 (99,000 copies sold) with his third album, Pleasures U Like, and the "Exit Wounds" soundtrack, which features cuts from Nas, Mack 10 and DMX, who co-stars in the film with Steven Seagal. The album muscled its way to the #8 spot with 91,000 copies sold.

Rounding out the rest of the top 10 on the new Billboard 200 are Aerosmith's Just Push Play, at #5 (102,000 copies sold); Dido's No Angel, at #7 (98,000); Limp Bizkit's Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water, at #9 (80,000); and Tank's Force of Nature, at #10 (70,000).

Elsewhere on the new Billboard chart, albums from Aaron Carter, Uncle Kracker and Bishop T.D. Jakes all posted big jumps this week, while a pair of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony bandmates saw almost identical debuts with their respective new albums.

Carter's Aaron's Party (Come Get It) surged to #35 from #49, while Kid Rock protégé Uncle Kracker crashes the top 40 for the first time with his Double Wide debut, which climbs to #39. Jakes also received a little divine chart intervention this week, as his new gospel collection, Storm Is Over, has winged its way up to #55 from #92.

Using the rap handle L-Burna, Layzie Bone outsold fellow Bone Thugs rapper Bizzy Bone by fewer than a dozen copies during their respective records' first week in stores. L-Burna's Thug by Nature debuted at #44, while Bizzy Bone entered the chart at #45 with his second solo album, The Gift.

Albums set to debut in the top half of the new Billboard 200 albums chart include: the "Brothers" soundtrack (featuring contributions from Snoop Dogg, Jermaine Dupri and Jaheim), at #32; Beatnuts' Take It or Squeeze It, at #51; Lionel Richie's Renaissance, at #62; Yolanda Adams' Experience, at #63; and the WOW Worship Green gospel compilation, at #78.

Other records debuting on the chart are the Old 97's Satellite Rides, at #121; Toadies' Hell Below/Stars Above, at #130; Sepultura's Nation, at #134; Skrape's New Killer America, at #157; Mr. Short Khop's Da Khop Shop, at #167; Pastor Hezekiah Walker's Love Is Live, at #180; and the Jerry Garcia Band's Shining Star, at #194.

For full-length interviews with 112 and Shaggy, check out "112: Play The Game" and "Shaggy: Rocking You Wild."