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"After a few very quiet weeks of releases, we have really been looking forward to the new Disturbed record hitting today [9/17] to kick off the fourth quarter."
——HMV’s Jeff Davidson
CHICKS STICK AT #1
Avril, Nelly and Shady Playing Top Five Leapfrog in the Final Week Before the Fall
Don’t worry, folks, the other shoe is about to drop at retail.

The marketplace has been eerily quiet the last two weeks, with no major debuts until next Tuesday (9/24), the first release day of autumn, while Reprise metalists Disturbed look to storm the sales charts the dame day..

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Open Wide
Columbia/CRG’s Dixie Chicks continue to rule the roost, holding the top spot on the HITS Top 50 Albums chart for the third straight week on sales north of 200k. And that ain’t chopped liver, folks—or barbecued ribs, for that matter…certainly not on a dead week like this one.

HMV’s Jeff Davidson took time out from crocheting a football-field-sized American flag to look to the future: "After a few very quiet weeks of releases, we have really been looking forward to the new Disturbed record hitting today [9/17] to kick off the fourth quarter. As lackluster a year as it has been, we are still very excited about how many big records are on the way. From Elvis to Shania to Santana and Christina Aguilera, we might finally get some real momentum going."

Back to the present, there’s a lot of jockeying for position below the Chicks involving kid-pleasing superstars and adult-leaning stalwarts. The former category dominates the Top Five, as Arista wunderkind Avril Lavigne climbs to #2, while Fo’ Reel/Universal hip-hop hero Nelly and Aftermath/Interscope bad boy Eminem hold down the next two slots. DreamWorks Nashville’s resurgent redneck patriot Toby Keith rounds out the Top Five.

The rest of the Top 10 might as well have an "Adults Only" sign attached to it. Columbia/CRG Hall of Famer Bruce Springsteen continues to inspire at #6, Blue Note sensation Norah Jones has another solid week at #7 and Capitol’s Coldplay shows strength at #8, while Columbia/CRG’s James Taylor holds strong at #9. Arista’s Clipse bust through to #10, which is cool for L.A. Reid and company, but screws up our editorial angle for this paragraph.

The only pure debut of the week was Righteous Babe indie stalwart Ani DiFranco at #26.

Next week, the charts will be Disturbed from their three-week slumber.

HITS LIST IS
IN THE MAIL
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NEAR TRUTHS: THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD
The lives behind live music. (10/14a)
HARVEY MASON JR.:
THE HITS INTERVIEW
The Grammy chief takes our call. (10/14a)
RAINMAKERS 2020: COMING SOON
It will rain again this fall--we guarantee it. (10/13a)
STEVIE WONDER PARTNERS WITH REPUBLIC
First music in 15 years. (10/14a)
RAINMAKERS 2020
Bring your umbrella.
GRAMMY OUTLIERS
Mulling possible surprises.
HALLOWEEN IN QUARANTINE
Why not wear a mask indoors?
ELECTION 2020
What drugs will help us get there?
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