New J-Lo Album Struggles to Make Top 5
It just goes to show ya: Ceaseless, unrelenting, self-serving publicity does not always sell albums.
Jennifer Lopez has unleashed a torrent of it recently concerning marriage, divorce, diamonds and her Sexiest Man Alive fiancé, and still it didn't quite work.
Her new album, This Is Me Now, will likely finish in the top 5 in its first week out, but maybe just at number 5 — far behind a dead man (Tupac Shakur) as well as Eminem, Tim McGraw and Shania Twain.
J-Lo's new movie, Maid in Manhattan, opens next week and there will no doubt be the attendant publicity of her being photographed with Ben Affleck, etc. But something about all this obviously turns people off — it's not sending them into record stores, that's for sure. The new J-Lo will be lucky to do 250,000 copies total, and that may be a generous assumption.
Of course, the problem with This Is Me, as with Whitney Houston's new album and much of Puff Daddy's, Eminem's and other whole hip-hop CDs is that they aren't albums of songs; they're press releases.
On this offering, J-Lo talks about her jewelry, sings an icky song to Affleck and promises not to leave him (I mean, there isn't a person on Earth with a basic knowledge of this story that believes that) and covers — not too convincingly — Carly Simon and Michael McDonald's old "You Belong to Me."
At the George Harrison memorial concert in London last weekend, Tom Hanks — noting how the music from that evening had held up so beautifully from the late '60s and early '70s — observed, rhetorically: "Do you think years from now rappers will be getting together to, uh, rap their old numbers?"
I had to laugh at one of the lines in a new J-Lo song: "I'm happy that you seem to blow my mind." That's a keeper. So is: "I love my life and my public." Lopez doesn't know this, but Rodgers and Hart considered using the same line years ago.
Meanwhile in other, stranger, and more ironic news, it looks like Paul McCartney's live album sold twice as many copies as George Harrison's posthumous one in its debut week.
Harrison's lovely Brainwashed will just barely clear 100,000 copies total this week — an absolute travesty, if you ask me. I know that the Capitol promotions department staged listening parties around the country replete with burning incense and throw pillows.
But beyond that, there doesn't seem to have been any kind of mindset about George placed in newspapers and magazines prior to the release. Maybe it would be nice if McCartney, whilst doing his own publicity, plugged Harrison's album as well. Just a thought...