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The seeds of the marketing campaign for 21 were first planted when the one for 19 drew to a close two years ago, with Adele playing before 19,000 at the Hollywood Bowl.

ADELE TURNS 21 INTO A SMASH

Sophomore Album Debuts at #1, with 353k in First-Week Sales; First Album Re-Enters at #16
She’s only 22, but Adele already has a second hit album in her young career.

The U.K. pop diva’s sophomore XL/Columbia release, cleverly titled 21, debuts at #1 on the HITS sales chart with the year’s highest first-week total of 353k.

Topping that off, her 2008, Grammy-winning debut 19 re-enters the chart this week at #16, logging in an additional 17k in sales.

The seeds of the marketing campaign for 21 were first planted when the one for 19 drew to a close two years ago, with Adele playing before 19,000 at the Hollywood Bowl, an expert set-up by Columbia RecordsSteve Barnett and SVP Marketing Scott Greer which began last summer.

It all culminated during the week of release, when the chanteuse appeared on The Today Show, Letterman, Ellen, Jimmy Kimmel, the CBS Early Show and Chelsea Lately. Among Adele’s biggest backers has been VH1’s Rick Krim, who put the first single, “Rolling in the Deep,” into heavy rotation more than two months ago and kept it there.

Island/IDJ’s Justin
Bieber keeps up his torrid pace, landing at #2 with last week’s chart-topping Never Say Never—The Remixes, while My World 2.0 continues at #5, now over the 2.5 million mark.

Glassnote’s Mumford & Sons moves past platinum, adding another 62k to its total at #3, while Capitol/EMI’s Now 37 rounds out the Top 5 at #4.

New Elektra’s Bruno Mars (#6), Def Jam/IDJ’s Rihanna, now over a million (#7), YM/CM/Universal Motown’s Nicki Minaj (#8), Shady/Aftermath/Interscope’s Eminem (#9) and Broken Bow’s Jason Aldean (#10), closing in on a million, complete the chart leaders.

The highest chart entry outside of Adele is made by Sire’s Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows (#22), otherwise known as D.R.U.G.S., a post-hardcore band featuring former members of Chiodos, Story of the Year and From First to Last. Other Top 50 newcomers include Decca’s Celtic Thunder (#33), Rhino’s Jeff Beck tribute to Les Paul (#36), Brushfire/Universal Republic’s G. Love (#37), Wind-up’s Bayside (#39) and Roadrunner’s Devildriver (#46).

Next week, look for a strong showing from former Floetry member Marsha AmbrosiusJ/RMG solo debut, with Columbia’s Harry Connick Jr., Lost Highway’s Lucinda Williams, Hear Music/Concord’s Carole King/James Taylor DVD/CD of the PBS special, Troubadours: The Rise of the Singer-Songwriter and Beady Eye Music/Dangerbird's Beady Eye (featuring Oasis vocalist Liam Gallagher) also on tap.

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