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J. Cole Earns Third Highest Debut Of 2016 With No. 1 Album '4 Your Eyez Only'

by Ryan Middleton   Dec 19, 2016 13:34 PM EST

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Music Minute: Sam Smith X Factor snub, Grammy nominations revealed and J Cole releases new album

As was predicted last week, J. Cole has topped the Billboard 200 Album charts with his fourth No. 1 album, 4 Your Eyez Only. The 492,000 equivalent album units is the third highest debut in 2016, trailing only Drake's Views (1.04 million units) and Beyoncé's Lemonade (653,000 unites).

Of those 492,000 equivalent album units, 363,000 were traditional album sales, the third largest weekly sales sum for a single album in 2016. It only trails the two previously mentioned albums, Views (852,000 sold in first week) and Lemonade (485,000 sold) in that respect.

It receives a big boost from streaming numbers. 4 Your Eyez Only logged 118,000 SEA (streaming equivalent albums) units. This equals 51.7 million streams of the LP's songs, which would be second largest streaming debut ever for an album just behind, you guessed it, Drake's Views. Views notched 163,000 streaming units in its opening week, equivalent to 245.1 million song streams from the album that week.

Drake has continued as the king of streaming recently as the only artist to eclipse one billion Spotify streams on a song with "One Dance."

4 Your Eyez Only is only the third album to surpass 100,000 SEA units in a single week, following Views and just topping Starboy, which had 117,000 in its first week.

This is J. Cole's fourth studio album and all four have debuted at No. 1. He is only the second rapper to have his first full-length studio efforts debut at No. 1, joining DMX in that company. 2011's Cole World: the Sideline Story launched with 217,000 sold. In 2013 Born Sinner sold 297,000 in the first week and then the following year 2014 Forest Hills Drive debuted with 363,000 sold.

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