Wherever she was, [artist id="3180740"]Susan Boyle[/artist] probably had a very good Christmas. The singer, who has gone from an unknown to one of the biggest pop stars on the planet in the past six months, will make it a clean sweep next week when her debut, I Dreamed a Dream, will close out the year on the Billboard albums chart with a fifth straight week at #1.
MTV's #8 Woman of the Year has had a stranglehold on the top position since her album's release last month, and even though business was down 23 percent during the holiday week, she still managed to move another 510,000 copies, according to figures provided by Nielsen SoundScan, which pushed her five-week sales total to a hair under 3 million.
Boyle has been on such a run that her totals in just under a month and a half almost equal the 2009 figures for the year's sales champ, [artist id="2389485"]Taylor Swift's[/artist] Fearless. Boyle had a bit of competition, though, from another diva, [artist id="854"]Mary J. Blige[/artist], whose upbeat Stronger will hit the #2 slot, thanks to sales of 330,000. The only other top 10 debut was the first album from [artist id="510062"]Lil Wayne's[/artist] [artist id="1900172"]Young Money[/artist] crew, We Are Young Money, which will land at #9 on sales of 142,000. Those figures likely would have been much higher had the album been bundled with Weezy's Rebirth disc, as originally planned. Wayne's album was moved to February two weeks ago, though an accidental shipment from Amazon.com to a few hundred customers has resulted in the entire album leaking online.
After hitting #2 in its first week, Alicia Keys' The Element of Freedom dipped 33 percent to #4 on sales of 280,000, while the rest of the top 10 remained mostly static. Tenor Andrea Bocelli held on to #3 with My Christmas (284,000), Swift was down one to #5 with Fearless (224,000), MTV's Woman of the Year Lady Gaga held firm at #6 with The Fame (169,000), Justin Bieber moved up to #7 with My World (157,000), Carrie Underwood slipped three to #8 with Play On (153,000) and Michael Bublé fell a few to #10 with Crazy Love (137,000).
With the Refill reissue, Eminem's Relapse had a giant 83-spot leap to #11 as sales jumped 713 percent to 128,000. Rihanna's Rated R crept up three spots to #18 (91,000) as the album steamed toward half a million in sales after five weeks, while former boyfriend Chris Brown fell three to #31 after three weeks, as sales for Graffiti inched up to 60,000.
Things were not so great for R&B loverman Robin Thicke, whose star-studded seduction suite Sex Therapy: The Experience got the cold shoulder in week two, as sales dropped 50 percent to 61,000 and the album slid nearly 20 spots to #30. And in the battle of "American Idol" top finishers, runner-up Adam Lambert's For Your Entertainment continued to dominate with sales of 62,000 (#29) as winner Kris Allen's self-titled debut fell another five spots to #55 (30,000).
Boyle looks to dominate into the new year, as no major releases were scheduled during the last week of 2009.