This week, Billboard highlights the sales numbers of three American Idol winners, and the industry mag’s take is as negative as one would expect, considering the falling fortunes of the ailing competition reality show.
The headline for Friday’s Chart Moves column is “Idol Hits New Low” which is referring to the first week numbers for American Idol winner, Caleb Johnson’s debut album. The reporter notes (as we did) that Testify sold only 11K–the lowest debut for an Idol winner’s first album, in terms of both chart position and sales. The article is accompanied by a nice, big photo of Caleb, unless we were unclear about exactly who brought the Idol franchise down even further.
Getting lost in the shuffle, was the OTHER American Idol winner who released an album this week. Because Kris Allen’s Horizons, debuted out of the Top 50, we didn’t even have a Hits sales prediction for him. But now we know that The American Idol season 8 winner sold 4,000 copies of his 3rd studio album. The set debuted at #80 on the Billboard 200. It’s an indie release, with very little promo outside of Kris’s efforts to network, so the low sales aren’t a surprise. Billboard’s spin was pretty neutral, noting that it was the first indie release from Kris.
The third American Idol winner included in Billboard’s column released his album 13 weeks ago, but the numbers reporting has been spotty outside of the first couple of weeks. (Remember the days when we got Idol sales numbers, for every current release, every single week? Ah, Nostalgia.) Behind the Light, the sophomore effort from American Idol season 11 winner,Phillip Phillips, sold 2K this week, a 31% rise due to sale pricing at Google Play and back-to-school promotions at retailers. The numbers give us a rough idea of how well Phillip has been selling week to week. So far, the album has sold 103K. The singer isn’t roaring up the charts, and will likely not go platinum as he did the first time around, but it could be worse. It’s a safe bet to assume Caleb won’t even get a second album.