I tried so hard to figure out a way to fit Charlie Sheen into this edition of Music Power Brokers since he dominated the headlines this week, but I couldn”t figure out any musical connection. So instead, we shine the light on someone much more deserving: British singer/songwriter Adele, whose sophomore album, “21,” sells a staggering 352,000 this week, the highest first week tally of 2011. Not only is the album a commercial success, but a critical one as well, destined to make many “best of 2011” lists.
1. Adele (last week No. 2): Not only does she handily land at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, but her digital sales are so strong that Billboard reported even if she had sold no physical CDs, she would have still handily come in at the top.
2. Doug Morris (not ranked): Sony Music Entertainment finally announces his official start day as its new CEO. When he claims the title on July 1, it will be the third major label group (out of four) that he has run, following his stints at Warner Music Group and, until earlier this week, Universal Music Group. We say he should run EMI for just a week before he”s done so he can top all four.
3. Lady Gaga (not ranked): The video for “Born This Way” debuts on Monday. Within five days, it has garnered close to 10 million views on YouTube. However, that”s nothing compared to 10-year old Maria Aragon”s cover, which has drawn 18 million views in 2 weeks…and Lady Gaga”s attention. The newest path to stardom for a young kid? Cover a Lady Gaga song.
[More after the jump…]
4. Jennifer Lopez (not ranked): “American Idol” isn”t just for wannabe singers anymore, it”s for career comebacks. Following some severe career missteps (Louboutins, anyone?), new “AI” judge J-Lo comes surging back with “On the Floor,” her highest debuting single ever.
5. Live Nation (not ranked): They”re still the largest concert promoter in the world but their troubles spelled out writ large that 2010 was annus horribilis for the concert industry as the company”s net loss for fiscal 2010 amounted to $228 million, triple that of 2009.
6. Trent Reznor (not ranked): Reznor experiences beginner”s luck as his first score, composed with Atticus Ross, for “The Social Network” snags the Oscar for best score. Where”s the Like button?
7. Max Martin, Dr. Luke, Bonnie McKee and Mathieu Jomphe (not ranked): The writers of Britney Spears” “Hold It Against Me,” tired of hearing the Bellamy Bros. accuse them of ripping of the duo”s ’70s hit “If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me)” file a defamation and libel suit against the country act. What we can”t figure out it how the Bellamy Bros. can lay any claim to the line since Groucho Marx introduced it during the ’50s.
8. Apple (not ranked): First off, Steve Jobs surprises and delights followers with his surprise appearance at the launch of the iPad 2, now it looks like Apple will bow its cloud-based locker service by mid-year.
9. A2IM (not ranked): The American Assn. of Independent Music asks the question that so many of us wonder about as well: why do Billboard and SoundScan use methodology to calculate label market share based on distribution instead of ownership.
10. “American Idol” (not ranked): As the contest heats up, Thursday night”s edition announcing the 13 finalists lands ratings 29% higher than last year”s similar broadcast. Simon who?
What do you think of this week’s music power rankings? Share your thoughts below.