Two Universal Records debut discs enter Billboard’s R&B Albums chart in the #1 and #2 spots for this week. Free City, from the St. Louis-based hip-hop group The St. Lunatics (comprised of 6x platinum rapper Nelly, Ali, Kyjuan, Murphy Lee and Slo Down), landed at #1, while Hot Boys member Turk’s long-awaited solo offering, Young & Thuggin’, grabs the #2 spot. Released June 5th, the discs also make impressive debuts on Billboard’s pop albums chart, landing among the top 10.
The lead tracks from both albums are garnering significant airplay at urban and crossover radio. The St. Lunatic’s “Midwest Swing” was the #1 most added track at crossover radio its first week out. The “Midwest Swing” video is the #3 Most Requested video on BET, while Turk’s “It’s In Me” continues to receive substantial support from the music network.
The St. Lunatics created the hybrid sound of midwestern rhythms and Dirty South cadences that put St. Louis on hip-hop’s world map and help catapult Nelly to superstardom. The St. Lunatics are set to appear this summer on MTV’s TRL tour along with Destiny’s Child.
New Orleans-based rapper Turk is a member of the groundbreaking rap group the Hot Boys (comprised of multi-platinum rapper Juvenile, Lil Wayne and B.G.), whose independently released album Get It Where You Live sold over 200,000 copies by word-of-mouth. The group’s follow-up disc, Guerrilla Warfare, released on Cash Money/Universal Records, reached platinum sales. Turk’s Young & Thuggin’ is the last in a series of solo debuts from the Hot Boys.
Additionally, Universal Records continues to enjoy success with Nelly’s award-winning album, Country Grammar which has remained a Top 20 staple on R&B and Pop charts for over a year since its release. The album has spawned such hits as “Country Grammar,” “E.I.” and the current smash, “Ride Wit Me” which currently ranks #3 on Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles chart.