If you're wondering, "Who the heck is Hannah Montana?" you probably don't have kids.
She's Miley Cyrus in real life: the daughter of mullet-rocking country singer Billy Ray Cyrus, and the star of the Disney Channel original series "Hannah Montana." On the show, she plays a young girl leading a double life — she's a regular teenager by day and a pop star by night. But this week, Montana also happens to be the biggest thorn in the collective side of New Jersey rock troupe My Chemical Romance.
Over the last seven days, the music industry has been wondering just who would reach Billboard's peak first this week. It was a tight, three-way race between the "Hannah Montana" soundtrack — which features tracks from the Click Five, Jesse McCartney and even the Cyruses themselves — My Chemical Romance's third studio LP, The Black Parade, and neo-soul singer/pianist John Legend's Once Again. It was anyone's guess who'd wind up on top, and for a spell, My Chemical Romance seemed to have the advantage. But according to the latest SoundScan totals released Wednesday morning (November 1), a #1 debut just wasn't in the cards for MCR.
Hannah Montana sold more than 281,000 copies its first week in stores, outperforming The Black Parade — #2 with 240,000 — by more than 41,000 units, while MCR's conceptual opus edged out third-place Legend by more than 9,000 scans. The Black Parade's impressive first-week numbers stomped debut sales of the group's 2004 release Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, which has moved close to 1.5 million copies to date; that record opened at #103, with 12,000 units.
By comparison, Once Again's opening-week totals creamed those generated by Legend's 2004 outing Get Lifted, which has sold about 1.8 million copies to date and opened at #7 with 116,000 scans. And there's even more reason for Legend to smile this week, as Get Lifted returns to the top 200 at #141 after more than a month off the chart, with 6,800 sold.
Twenty-three newcomers hit the chart this week, but Hannah, My Chemical Romance, and Legend are the only three new releases to open in Billboard's top 10. Justin Timberlake's FutureSex/LoveSounds hangs tough at #4 with another 89,000 copies sold, and Evanescence's The Open Door slides three spots to #5 on 78,000 scans its fourth week in stores. Hinder's Extreme Behavior follows at #6 with sales at 69,000, while Diddy's Press Play slips from #1 to #7, thanks to a 65 percent sales drop off that resulted in second-week scans of 60,000. Tony Bennett's Duets: An American Classic claims the chart's #8 slot, with 53,000 copies sold, with Nickelback's All the Right Reasons at #9 with sales of 49,000. The Killers' Sam's Town rounds out the top 10 with close to 47,000 scans.
Just missing the top-10 cut at #11 is Jibbs' debut, Jibbs Feat. Jibbs, which netted opening-week sales of close to 47,000. Lil Boosie's Bad Azz follows at #18 with 41,000 scans, while Shareefa's Point of No Return claims the #25 spot with nearly 37,000. Brooke Hogan's Undiscovered surfaces at #28 with about 30,000 scans, and "The Nightmare Before Christmas" special-edition soundtrack, which includes the film's original score and five new versions of songs from the movie that have been reworked by Marilyn Manson, Panic! at the Disco, Fall Out Boy, Fiona Apple and She Wants Revenge, bows at #31 with nearly 27,000 copies sold (see "Fall Out Boy, Panic, Marilyn Manson Add To New 'Nightmare Before Christmas' Soundtrack").
Paul Stanley's Live to Win finishes at #53 with 17,000 copies purchased, while R&B singer Kelly Price's This is Who I Am follows at #54 with 16,000 scans. Gucci Mane's Hard to Kill claims #76 with 12,000 copies grabbed up, and Sparta's Threes finishes at #83 thanks to 11,000 units scanned. The latest outing from Bright Eyes, 200, owns the #107 spot with sales reported at 9,000 while Ben Folds' Supersunnyspeedgraphic, the LP opens at #114, generating 8,000 in first-week sales.
Converge return to the chart at #151 with No Heroes selling 6,000 units its first week in stores, followed at #153 by Moby's best-of collection Go: The Very Best of Moby at #153 with 6,000 copies sold. Vultures, the new one from Smile Empty Soul, debuts at #169, having sold 5,000 its initial week of release.