Jay Z’s “Magna Carta Holy Grail” album storms in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, selling 528,000 copies in its first week according to preliminary data from Nielsen SoundScan.
The larger-than-expected start is the second-biggest sales week for a single album this year. It bypasses the previous runner-up, Daft Punk’s “Random Access Memories,” which opened with 339,000 in May. Both albums trail behind the year’s largest frame, racked up when Justin Timberlake’s “The 20/20 Experience” exploded with 968,000 in its first week.
“Magna Carta” also gives the hip-hop icon his 13th No. 1 — extending his record for the most chart-toppers by a solo act in history. Among all artists, only the Beatles — with 19 No. 1s — have more. Tied for the third-most No. 1s are Bruce Springsteen and Elvis Presley, who each have 10 leaders.
Jay Z has seen every one of his solo studio albums reach No. 1 since 1998’s “Vol. 2… Hard Knock Life,” which also happened to mark his first No. 1. His 13 chart-toppers also include three collaborative albums: one each with R. Kelly, Linkin Park and Kanye West, respectively.