Last week reportedly marked the biggest album release week of the year, and rappers Kanye West and Nicki Minaj emerged victorious when the final numbers were released.
West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy moved over 495K copies putting it in the number 1 position on the Billboard 200 albums chart, while Minaj’s debut album Pink Friday, came in at number 2, and pushed over 375K units.
“My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” serves as Kanye West’s fourth studio album and his fourth straight #1 debut. The rapper’s first album The College Dropout debuted at #1 in 2004 with 441K copies sold, while the follow-up, Late Registration (released in 2005) also premiered at #1 with 860K units moved.
Two years later in 2007, Kanye’s third album Graduation sold 957K units its first week, and was also #1, beating out 50 Cent‘s Curtis album. And Kanye’s fourth album, 808’s and Heartbreak, dropped in 2008 and debuted at #1, selling 450K copies in its first week.
When it comes to Nicki Minaj, the Young Money femcee had the second highest opening sales week for a female rapper’s debut album, a record set by Lauryn Hill when her debut solo project The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (released in 1998) moved over 420K copies its first week. To put all of this in perspective, Lil Kim‘s debut album Hard Core (released in 1996) debuted at #11 on the Billboard 200 charts its first week of release and didn’t sell many units (we couldn’t even find a number online, smh).