Kanye West’s Donda has debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in the biggest week for any album release this year (surpassing Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour).
On Sunday (Sept. 5), the folks at Billboard reported that Yeezy’s Donda album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart after moving 309,000 equivalent album units in its first week. 37,000 of that total came from pure album sales. The album marks the biggest first-week sales total of 2018, with Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour album moving 295,000 equivalent album units when it was first released three months ago.
With this debut, Kanye has tied Eminem for most consecutive No. 1 debuts on the Billboard 200. Between the success of his Donda live listening sessions (and his sold out merch) and this No. 1 placement, it’s safe to say Kanye’s had a good week.
The success of Kanye’s new album is no surprise. After all, he’s Kanye, a superstar who’s been one of the most influential figures in pop culture for at least 15 years. On another note, the project has features from JAY-Z, Travis Scott, Lil Baby, The Weeknd, Don Toliver and just about everyone else mainstream rap fans would want to listen to, so the streams were always going to go crazy.
This news arrives on the heels of reports that Kanye is looking to start a homeware line. Yesterday, TMZ reported that Yeezy had filed trademark requests for a homeware line named after himself. At this point, it’s unclear whether that will be affected by his recent request to change his name to ’Ye, but more details should surface soon.
Before news of Kanye’s potential homeware line was reported, he ended up in the headlines after Drake leaked “Life of the Party,” an André 3000-assisted song on which Yeezy disses Drizzy. After the leak hit the internet, fans wondered why the track didn’t make the album. For his part, 3 Stacks released a statement saying that the track didn’t feature the Drake diss when he got it and that the song wasn’t included on Donda because an edited version of the song wouldn’t work due to its content. Kanye edited out all of the curse words on his new album.
Kanye has become one of only seven artists in chart history to release 10 chart-topping albums (alongside the Beatles, JAY-Z, Bruce Springsteen, Barbra Streisand, Eminem, and Elvis Presley). Donda also gave him the largest streaming week for an album in 2021, surpassing J. Cole’s The Off-Season. Halsey’s new album debuted at No. 2.