The jury might still be out for some on Justin Timberlake’s comeback single, “Suit & Tie,” but there are clearly enough fans of the Timbaland-produced song out there that JT could be looking at his biggest first week ever.
According to Billboard, “Suit,” which has topped the iTunes singles chart in the U.S. and England, is on track to sell between 330,000 and 350,000 downloads by the end of the reporting week on Sunday. If sales keep up, the magazine said it would easily be his best sales week ever for a digital song, blowing by the 250,000 logged by “SexyBack” in 2006, when digital sales were still in their relative infancy.
“Tie,” which is currently available as an iTunes exclusive, is the first single from Timberlake’s as-yet-unscheduled third album, The 20/20 Experience.
While Timberlake is not in danger of beating Taylor Swift’s 2012 first week sales record of 623,000, it could become one of only seven songs in the past year to pass the 300,000 mark.
Billboard asked the question on many observers’ minds: considering Timberlake’s long musical hiatus and his continuing high-profile career as a TV and movie actor, why isn’t “Tie” blasting the doors off all sales records? And why is it not ever close to the 512,000 posted by Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend” last year?
For one, Timberlake didn’t set the song up with weeks of promotion and buzz, he dropped it a few days after a surprise announcement on his website. Also, his fans have likely aged since the last time he was in the mix in 2006 and they may not be as quick to download as Swift and Bieber’s tween fans.
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