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A 600k week for Jay-Z means that stock problems brought on by unexpectedly high initial demand were solved quickly during the week, allowing sell-through of the album to reach target numbers.

WEEK IN PREVIEW: BLUEPRINT 2 #1

Missy, Pearl Jam, TLC Also Looking at
Strong Debuts
It’s a big week for Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam, as rap superstar Jay-Z gets set to dethrone rap superstar Eminem at the top of the chart. Z’s The Blueprint 2: The Gift & The Curse appears ready to make its chart bow at around a whopping 600k, besting the 8 Mile soundtrack by approximately 200k as the latter album slips by a relatively modest 25% to around 400k.

A 600k week for Jay-Z means that stock problems brought on by unexpectedly high initial demand were solved quickly during the week, allowing sell-through of the album to reach target numbers. If the numbers post as expected, this will be the second time since 8 Mile’s release that the top two albums on the chart have accounted for more than a million units sold (two weeks ago, 8 Mile’s debut combined with Christina Aguilera’s Stripped broke that threshold).

Coming in at #3 should be Missy Elliott’s Under Construction (Elektra), though she’ll have to beat Justin Timberlake’s Justified (Jive), which, in its second chart week, is expected to dip by about half. Also making strong debuts are Pearl Jam’s Riot Act (Epic) and TLC’s 3D (Arista), which are expected to do about 200k and 170k, respectively.

A trio of releases should debut around the 100k mark, including VP/Atlantic’s Sean Paul, Elton John’s greatest hits package (UTV) and the WWE: The Anthology collection (Koch).

In radioland, look for Avril Lavigne’s "I’m with You" (Arista) the Dixie Chicks’ "Landslide" (Open Wide/Monument/Columbia) and Jay-Z’s "’03 Bonnie & Clyde" (featuring Beyonce) to dominate the add race at Top 40, as their labels each "officially" goes for adds this week despite the fact that many, many stations are way ahead of them. Also look for cleanup to continue on Aguilera’s "Beautiful."

At Crossover, it’s all about R. Kelly’s "Ignition" (Jive), Trick Daddy’s "Thug Holiday" (Slip-N-Slide/Atlantic) and Tupac’s "Thug’s Mansion" (Amaru/Death Row/Interscope). Also keep an eye on MCA’s K-Ci & JoJo and Cash Money/Universal’s Lil’ Wayne.

And at Post Modern, Elektra’s Social Burn, Atlantic’s The Donnas and TVT’s Sevendust will vie for the title of the week’s most-loved rock band. Stay tuned—this rock thing may be around for a while.

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