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"The fact that 'Invincible' has debuted, globally, at #1 has reaffirmed Michael's place in history as one of the most important and influential artists in the world."
——Polly Anthony, Epic Records Group President
JACKO IS BACKO!!!
Not to Mention That Enrique Is Our Hero and the Backstreet Boys' "Hits" Hits
In a time of trouble, it takes a great leader to unite the world—and that leader turns out to be an international pop star who hasn't released a set of new material in a nearly a decade.

And so, the King of Pop is again King of the World. Long live the King.

Michael Jackson's new Epic disc, Invincible, is #1 in America. #1 in France. #1 in the U.K. #1 in Australia, Japan, Germany, Italy, Lithuania... You get the point.

Epic's approach on this project ran counter to the recent Jackson marketing strategies of super-hyping his records with high-profile, costly campaigns. The label has shipped 5 million worldwide, 1.4 million of that in the U.S., counting 400k in reorders this week.

Said Epic Records Group President Polly Anthony: "The fact that Invincible has debuted, globally, at #1 has reaffirmed Michael's place in history as one of the most important and influential artists in the world. What an incredible way to celebrate Michael's 30th anniversary as a solo artist."

Added EVP/GM Steve Barnett: "Our strategy from day one was to let the music speak for itself. Michael delivered a great record that we knew would find its way to the consumer. Worldwide, the fans have spoken."

Also debuting in the Top Five along with Jackson are Interscope's Latin heartthrob Enrique Iglesias, the son, naturally, of Tito Puente, who exceeded expectations by moving 266k units on his way to #2, and the greatest hits package from Jive's Backstreet Boys, whose #4 showing points to the continuing downswing being experienced by teenpop.

Other Top 20 debuts include Lenny Kravitz (Virgin) at #12, the "What's Going On?" benefit CD (Columbia) at #15 and Jermaine Dupri (So So Def/Columbia) at #17.

Next week, teenpop and classic rock go head-to-head, as Britney Spears' third LP battles Pink Floyd's greatest hits for #1, here and in the crucial Baltic markets.

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