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Tag: Lecrae (1-2 of 2)

On the Charts: Matchbox Twenty earn first No. 1, Imagine Dragons take flight, Alicia Keys not yet 'On Fire'

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Straight up, what did you hope to learn about here?

Oh, you wanted some chart news? Well, then you’re in the right place.

Sixteen years after the release of their debut album, Matchbox Twenty earned its first number one album on the Billboard 200 this week. Their latest set, North, sold 95,000 copies in its first seven days. The album’s success is a  testament to the rockers’ loyal fans, considering the disc’s lead single “Shes So Mean” peaked last week at No. 40 on the Hot 100.

The Rob Thomas-led crew formerly found massive success with their 1996 debut Yourself or Someone Like You, which peaked at No. 5 but was certified 12x platinum (oh, the how the music industry has changed…). North won’t likely reach those heights, but the No. 1 spot is still an impressive honor for the nostalgia-fueled act.

Time will tell whether fellow 1990s stalwarts Green Day and No Doubt can match Matchbox Twenty’s resilience, but for now, let’s check out the week’s other chart winners and losers: READ FULL STORY

Christian rapper Lecrae on scoring a top-five debut, finding his place in the hip-hop world, and having Tim Tebow and Jeremy Lin as fans

The top rap album on the Billboard 200 today isn’t from a known chart powerhouse like Kanye West or 2 Chainz. It comes from Lecrae, a 32-year-old Atlanta-based Christian rapper, whose new disc Gravity shifted 72,000 copies in its first week — enough to reach the No. 3 spot on the biggest mainstream chart in the country.

While Christian music has always maintained a viable niche in the music industry — just last week, Christian artist TobyMac topped the albums chart — until recently, Christian rap was often viewed as more of an oxymoronic punchline than anything else.

Lecrae has changed that. His 2008 disc Rebel became the first Christian rap album to Billboard’s Top Gospel chart, and it held the pole position for 78 weeks. His 2010 effort Rehab sold 27,000 copies in its first week, and its 2011 re-issue Rehab: The Overdose climbed to No. 15 on the mainstream chart.

Gravity has achieved a whole other level of success — easily the biggest sales week ever for a Christian rap album — and the trail Lecrae is blazing has helped fellow Christian rappers like Trip Lee and Tedashii find more widespread appeal.

EW chatted with the rapper about his growing fanbase, and how he navigates the secular market as a religious rapper:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I’ve gotta be honest. I’m sorta scared to interview you because you say on the album that, “Them magazines ain’t on my page.”
LECRAE: (Laughs) That’s because I haven’t been getting interviewed. That’s all that is. READ FULL STORY

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