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In the Year 2000…..*NSYNC Makes Music History

Submitted by on December 26, 2009 – 1:44 pmNo Comment

Photo courtesy WallpaperAsparas on Flickr

“No Strings Attached” Sells 1.4M units on the day of release; 2.4M in it’s first week, setting an unbeatable record and cementing ‘Nsync as the best selling group of the Decade & NSA as the fastest selling record of all time.

‘Nsync News: Flashback 2000: ‘N Sync, Britney, Eminem, and Backstreet Boys Set Sales Records [Yahoo! Music]

(12/31/00, 7 a.m. ET) – More than 2.4 million copies of ‘N Sync’s album No Strings Attached flew out of stores during the week of March 21–its first week of release. The amazing feat marked the first time that any album sold more than 2 million copies in a one-week period. No Strings Attached, of course, also debuted at Number One on the Billboard 200, and was the first album in history to sell more than 1 million units in a day (on March 21). ‘N Sync’s opening week more than doubled the previous record set in May 1999 when the group’s Jive labelmates, the Backstreet Boys, sold 1.13 million copies of their album Millennium in its first week on the market.

The Decade in Music- Top 50 Moments: Fans Buy, Buy, Buy ‘Nsync CD’s [Billboard Magazine]

When it comes to album sales in the ’00s, it didn’t get any bigger than N’ Sync’s “No Strings Attached.” The boy band that produced Justin Timberlake obliterated all chart records with its sophomore album, released in March 2000. “No Strings” sold 2.4 million copies in its first week of release and went on to sell a now-unfathomable 11.1 million in total. It also produced “Bye Bye Bye,” which had teen girls and aspiring boy-band members everywhere fiercely fist-pumping in unison. Love it or hate it, you couldn’t ignore it.


As reported here yesterday, ‘N Sync’s Jive album “No Strings Attached” debuts at No. 1 with a bang on The Billboard 200, selling a record-setting 2.4 million albums in its first week, according to SoundScan. “No Strings Attached” finally knocks Santana’s Arista smash “Supernatural” out of the top slot, which it had held down for 12 non-consecutive weeks. “Supernatural” still sold 265,800 units as it fell to No. 2.

Led by “No Strings Attached,” it is a week of strong debuts. Rapper Ice Cube’s Lench Mob/Best Side/Priority album “War & Peace Vol. 2 (The Peace Disc)” opens at No. 3 on the strength of 185,000 copies sold, and also debuts at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.


The music industry’s bar has been raised, as ‘N Sync’s Jive debut “No Strings Attached” exceeds 2.4 million units in its first week of sales, the first time in the SoundScan era that any album has sold more than 2 million copies in a single frame. ‘N Sync’s opening volley more than doubles the previous SoundScan-era record set last year when labelmates Backstreet Boys’ “Millennium” moved 1.13 million copies in its first week.

Only two other albums — the soundtrack from Whitney Houston’s “The Bodyguard” and Garth Brooks’ “Double Live” — have earned one-week totals in excess of 1 million units since The Billboard 200 adopted SoundScan data in May 1991.

SoundScan data will be officially released March 29.

In other ‘N Sync news, Amplified.com says that its weeklong offer of a free, streamed version of a remix of the group’s single “Bye Bye Bye” has resulted in the most deliveries of any song the company has offered to date. More than 1.7 million streams, in Windows Media and RealAudio formats, were delivered via Amplified’s distribution network.

‘N Sync Camp Celebrates Pop’s New Kings ‘N Sync members, label and manager stunned by “No Strings” sales phenomenon [Rolling Stone]

Alanis Morissette would have called it “ironic.” When the five young men in ‘N Sync learned that they had the new No. 1 album in America with No Strings Attached — a landmark achievement for the group, even considering the RIAA diamond (10 million shipped) status of their 1998 debut — the guys were mired in promotion duties in Japan, a territory they have yet to crack. The news came via a long-distance phone call from their manager, Johnny Wright.

“It was like three o’clock in the morning, and they were up and jumping around, asking for the saki,” laughed Wright Wednesday morning, shortly after the SoundScan numbers were released to reveal that No Strings had sold an unfathomable 2.4 million copies its first week in stores, obliterating the previous 1.1 million record set by the Backstreet Boys’ Millenium. Although the boys weren’t home to fully savor their victory, they received a surprise on-camera champagne toast from the heads of their new label, Jive Records, at the end of an hour-and-a-half stretch of satellite TV interviews. “It was actually a really special moment,” said label president Barry Weiss. “These are a wonderful bunch of guys, and they deserve every ounce of success that they’re getting right now.”

“They’re really taking it in stride,” said Jive VP of Artist Marketing Janet Kleinbaum. “I think they’re overwhelmed, because 2.4 million records is just unbelievable. It takes your breath away.”

Both label and management credit the album’s blockbuster success to the anticipation built over the two years since ‘N Sync released their last album (not counting 1999′s Christmas disc), stoked in no small part by the group’s highly publicized emancipation from their former management and contract-be-damned defection from RCA to Jive last fall, and a dizzying media blitz (Rosie, SNL, and seemingly every other half hour on MTV).

The floodgates opened on March 21, the day the album went on sale. Weiss estimates that No Strings broke the 1.1 million sales mark the first day. A spokesperson for Tower Records said the ‘N Sync sales ranked among the chain’s highest first-day sales ever alongside the Millennium and the Beatles’ Anthology series, while Musicland senior VP of music merchandising Dick Odette called it the biggest record the store’s ever sold.

For those keeping score — and most industry watchers are — ‘N Sync now seem to be firmly in the lead of their Backstreet rivals. But apart from distinguishing their sound from the Millennium boys, manager Wright is quick to downplay the competitive angle. “This whole thing about who’s No. 1, who’s No. 2 — it doesn’t really mean that much to them,” he said. “The bottom line, when you look at it overall, we’re selling comparatively the same amount of records that they were on the first one, and when we go out on tour we’re selling the same amount of concert tickets that they’re selling. So it’s really all about maintaining your popularity and giving your fans that are buying your music what they want. Our biggest concern is not so much trying to beat Backstreet Boys as maintaining the fanbase that we got at the beginning and keeping them with us through the next journey that we’re going to make.”

That’s all well and good, but come October when the Backstreet Boys release their follow-up to Millennium (or when Britney Spears releases her new album in May), Jive will undoubtedly be under the gun to push and market them to the new heights set by ‘N Sync. “The yardstick is definitely extended, but you have to keep focused on what you’re doing — you can’t keep comparing,” said Jive’s Kleinbaum. “We know now what the possibilities are. We’re not going to compare a Britney Spears record to ‘N Sync, or Backstreet Boys. However, ‘N Sync has shown us what can be done.”

Likewise, notes Weiss, the success of No Strings Attached should send a clear message that Jive can get the job done. “We’re going to do everything we can to continue to sell a lot of records.”

RICHARD SKANSE (March 31, 2000)

‘N Sync Crush First-Week Sales Record NSANE SALES [no source listed]

In a blockbuster sales performance that has even jaded music industry veterans stunned, `N Sync’s new album No Strings Attached not only beat the record for most copies sold during a single week, but it shattered the old mark. No Strings Attached sold 2.4 million copies for the week ending March 26, according to SoundScan. That more than doubles the record set last May when the Backstreet Boys’ Millennium sold 1.1 million copies its first week in stores.

Some perspective? This would be like Mark McGwire beating the old, single-season home record of 61 by hitting not 70 dingers, but 130. It would be like this summer’s big blockbuster flick selling $300 million worth of movie tickets its first week out, not $140 million. It would be like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire pulling in 70 million viewers a night, instead of its already top-rated 28 million viewers. In other words, `N Sync’s performance is off the charts, with nothing in the music industry’s history to compare it to.

Exactly how big is 2.4 million copies sold? No Strings Attached sold more copies than albums No. 2 through No. 25 combined last week. The album instantly became the No. 2 selling record for all of 2000, and, come next week, it will likely replace Santana’s Supernatural as the year’s No. 1.

Naturally the buying spree was a feast for music retailers. No doubt they were hoping the stampede of shoppers would mean lots of sales increases for other titles as well, as shoppers filled their arms on the way to the check-out. However, that didn’t really happen. Only one album inside the Top 40 saw real significant sales gains over the previous week; Jay-Z’s Volume 3: The Life & Times of S. Carter, which jumped from No. 38 to No. 28. As a matter of fact `N Sync’s own self-titled debut didn’t even see much of a bump, even though more than two million fans crowded into stores last week. That seems to indicate that shoppers had one thing on their minds: No Strings Attached.

And with the massive marketing campaign the band and its label Jive Records undertook, can you blame consumers for murmuring “No Strings Attached” in their sleep? The group has been everywhere during the month of March, particularly at MTV, which seemed to hand over its programming schedule to `N Sync for hours (days?) at a time. Clearly, it all paid off.

From the top, it was No Strings Attached, followed by Santana’s Supernatural (selling 267,000 copies); Ice Cube’s War & Peace, Vol. 2 (185,000); Pantera’s Reinventing the Steel (161,000); Sisqo’s Unleash the Dragon (158,000); Dr. Dre’s Dr. Dre 2001 (133,000); Macy Gray’s On How Life Is (116,000); WWF Aggression (110,000); Destiny’s Child’s Writing’s on the Wall (108,000); Kid Rock’s Devil Without a Cause (99,000)

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