‘Burn’ Keeps Usher Hot — And On Top

Mr. Entertainment hangs on to #1 spot on albums chart — but country singer Gretchen Wilson is close behind.

“Burn” is proving to be as smoking a jam as “Yeah!,” as the single helps Usher to remain in the hot seat of the Billboard albums chart.

Mr. Entertainment’s fourth album, Confessions, sold another 228,000 copies last week, just barely enough to keep country singer Gretchen Wilson out of the #1 slot, according to SoundScan. The one-two punch of hit singles has helped Usher’s album to maintain its position in the top slot for seven of the eight weeks since its release (D12 bumped it into the #2 spot two weeks ago).

Wilson’s debut album, Here for the Party, trails Confessions by less than 1,500 copies, while the album’s hit single, “Redneck Woman,” moves to #2 on Radio & Records‘ country-radio chart.

Dirty South pioneers 8Ball & MJG’s seventh LP, Living Legends, comes in at #3. Featuring contributions from Ludacris, Twista, 112 and P. Diddy, the album sold more than 120,000 copies on the heels of the single “You Don’t Want Drama.”

While D12 World will slide two spots to #4, with more than 117,000 copies sold in its third week out, Hoobastank’s The Reason takes one step forward to #5 (79,000 copies sold) as the crossover single “The Reason” shows no signs of slowing down.

The latest addition to the Cash Money clique, 48-year-old Teena Marie, will make her reintroduction at #6 with La Dona by selling more than 75,000 copies. Marie’s first album in a decade — and her 10th overall — features collaborations with Gerald Levert, Common and her former boyfriend Rick James, though the soulful R&B singer is flying solo on her hit single, “I’m Still in Love.”

The rest of next week’s top 10 finds Prince’s Musicology vacating its three-week-old spot at #3 for a place at #7 (with more than 68,000 copies sold); Now That’s What I Call Music! 15 up two notches to #8; Mario Winans’ Hurt No More down a deuce to #9 (60,000); and Petey Pablo taking the biggest dip with Still Writing in My Diary: 2nd Entry, which will fall from #4 to #10 (56,000).

End of Heartache, the third album by metal quartet Killswitch Engage, will bow at #21, their highest chart position ever. And the soundtrack to “Shrek 2,” with its eclectic roster of artists ranging from pop stars (Counting Crows) and disco kings (Lipps Inc.) to celebrity dabblers (Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas covering “Livin’ La Vida Loca”) and misanthropic singer/songwriters (Eels, Tom Waits, Nick Cave), will come in at #36, rounding out the top-40 debuts.

Big strides were made by rockers showing staying power, as Modest Mouse’s Good News for People Who Love Bad News moves up 11 spots to #23 — a 16 percent increase in sales — on the popularity of “Float On”; and Scottish hipsters Franz Ferdinand will jump up 42 spots to #65 with their eponymous debut.

And more than 9,500 people looking to make the next Black Album permutation (i.e. Grey Album, Slack Album, Double Black Album, etc.) picked up the a cappella version of Jay-Z’s latest, which will come in at #106.