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'NSYNC Likely To Outsell Everyone But Themselves

Celebrity sales projected to fall just short of record set by group’s No Strings Attached.

“Dirty pop” is turning out to be huge for ‘NSYNC, though maybe not as huge as last year’s model.

Four national retail chains said Wednesday (July 25) that based on first-day sales of ‘NSYNC’s new album, Celebrity, projected first-week numbers appeared to be falling just short of those for the group’s No Strings Attached, which sold 2.4 million copies in its first week last March – the highest first-week sales of the SoundScan era.

But Celebrity, released Tuesday, does seem to be on course to top the second-best sales mark held by Eminem, retailers said. The rapper’s The Marshall Mathers LP sold 1.76 million copies in its first week.

“So many people have been predicting the death of the boy band phenomenon, but anyone predicting that ‘NSYNC are over will be proven wrong.” – Bob Bell, Wherehouse Music buyer  

“Based on what I’m seeing so far, I’m projecting 2 million in sales nationwide,” said Bob Bell, pop/rock music buyer for the Wherehouse Music chain. “It may not meet the mark of No Strings Attached, but in the end, ‘NSYNC will hold the #1 and #2 SoundScan records…. So many people have been predicting the death of the boy band phenomenon, but anyone predicting that ‘NSYNC are over will be proven wrong.”

In a press release, the Sam Goody chain said that Celebrity “flew off the shelves” on Tuesday, but failed to match the first-day sales of No Strings Attached.

Best Buy and Virgin Megastores echoed that statement, with Virgin’s spokesperson pinning Celebrity’s sales at 90 percent of those of No Strings Attached.

However, a spokesperson for Tower Records said that at their stores, the new album’s first-day sales total of 30,000 copies surpassed those of last year’s LP, which sold 28,000 on its first day at Tower.

“We’re very encouraged,” Tower’s Sara Hanson said. “We think it’ll do as well, if not better, than No Strings Attached.”

A spokesperson for ‘NSYNC’s label, Jive, did not return a call for comment on the sales of Celebrity.

Before No Strings Attached came out, Backstreet Boys held the first-week SoundScan record, with 1.1 million copies sold of Millennium when it debuted in 1999. BSB sold 1.6 million copies of Black & Blue in its first week last year.

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