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Three Hip-Hop Albums Top Billboard 200

Eminem RecoveryIt seems like every few months there’s yet another major article published that claims hip-hop is dead — a formerly great genre that will never return to its glorious heyday of innovation and chart domination in the mid ’90s and early ’00s. Yet in the past few weeks, the tables have turned and it looks like all it takes is some music that actually resonates with the public. Yes, for the first time since 2003, three hip-hop albums are topping the Billboard 200 chart and leaving popular, sales-dominating artists like Justin Bieber in the dust.

Of course, the top spot for the past three weeks has belonged to Eminem‘s ‘Recovery’ album. Solidifying its spot through the success of the record’s first single ‘Not Afraid’ and the unstoppable climb of recent hit ‘Love The Way You Lie’ with Rihanna, ‘Recovery’ has more than enough lyrical honesty and stadium-ready beats to the keep the cash registers ringing. Thus far, the album has moved around 1.3 million copies and hit a strong 229,000 in its third week alone at the top.

Since ‘Recovery’ dropped, the No. 2 spot on the list has been occupied by Drake‘s ‘Thank Me Later’ — a record that debuted a month ago at the top spot and sold nearly 462,000 copies in its first week. Numbers have declined since then, but Drake is keeping a steady pace and would have topped the chart each week had Eminem not been there.

Finally, the No. 3 spot went to Big Boi‘s ‘Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Dusty Chico.’ The record sold 62,000 in its first week and should be a definite gainer due to excellent reviews across the board.

This week’s numbers demonstrate a genre that’s reaching another new stride and providing a little something for everyone, given the stylistic differences between all three albums. Numbers may not be what they used to be, but hip-hop is still thriving.

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