Chris Tomlin Gets Only The Fourth #1 For A Christian Album In Billboard 200 History
Posted by Joseph Lee on 01.16.2013
A slow week...
Chris Tomlin has his first #1 album on the Billboard 200 for his album Burning Lights. The album sold 73,000 and is also #1 on the Christian Albums chart. This is the largest sales week for any Christian or gospel set since Casting Crowns' Come to the Well got #2 on the November 5, 2011 chart with 99,000. This is also Tomlin's best sales week, moving past the 63,000 he earned on Thanksgiving 2010 for Glory in the Highest: Christmas Songs of Worship.
However, it's the smallest week for an album at #1 since September 15, 2012 when tobyMac got #1 with Eye On It (69,000). Burning Lights is the fourth Christian album to get #1 on the chart, followed by Eye On It last year, the first in fifteen years. In the fall of 1997, LeAnn Rimes' You Light Up My Life: Inspirational Songs was on top for three weeks and months before that the first ever was Bob Carlisle's Butterfly Kisses (Shades of Grace) spent two weeks on top in late June and early July.
Helping Tomlin are the non-traditional sales at churches, including the Passion Conference in Atlanta, as well as pre-orders. The Passion event had 60,000 college-aged people in attendance and was seen by over 100,000 people online. All sales from that event were 40% of the sales for the album. 30% came from digital downloads.
Debuting at #2 is Hollywood Undead with Notes from the Underground, which sold 53,000. This is the band's second-largest sales week ever after 2011's American Tragedy, which debuted at #4 with 66,000. This is also the band's first #1 on the Rock Albums chart after Tragedy got #2.
Thanks to Les Miserables and Pitch Perfect, this week also marks the first time since 1999 that two non-concert theatrical film soundtracks (that weren't from a TV series) were in the top five. The last time it happened was on the July 17, 1999 chart, when Wild Wild West and Tarzan were #4 and #5, respectively.
The Black Veil Brides debut at #7 with Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones selling 42,000. It's their best week ever in both sales and rank. Their last album, 2011's Set the World on Fire, debuted at #17 with 23,000.
Finally, Dropkick Murphys debut at #9 with Signed and Sealed in Blood, which sold 33,000. It's their second top ten album after 2011's Going Out In Style, which hit #6 with 43,000.
1. Chris Tomlin - Burning Lights (73,000)
2. Hollywood Undead - Notes from the Underground (53,000)
3. Les Miserables soundtrack (52,000)
4. Taylor Swift - Red (49,000)
5. Pitch Perfect soundtrack (45,000)
6. Bruno Mars - Unorthodox Jukebox (42,000)
7. Black Veil Brides - Wretched and Divine: The Story of the Wild Ones (42,000)
8. The Lumineers - The Lumineers (37,000)
9. Dropkick Murphys - Signed and Sealed in Blood (33,000)
10. One Direction - Take Me Home (29,000)
Album sales this week totaled 5.09 million, down 19% compared to last week (6.26 million) and down less than 1% compared to last year (5.10 million). Year to date album sales stand at 11.35 million, up 4% compared to the same total at this point last year (10.90 million).