Madonna's Music is sweet to world's ears

Move over, Britney. Madonna has re-established her claim as the queen of pop by taking her new album Music to No 1 in 23 countries, including the United States, where it ranks as her first chart-topper in 11 years.

Her Warner Bros label said the album sold 419,600 copies across the United States last week, while the song's title track logged its fourth consecutive week atop Billboard magazine's hot 100 singles chart.

Warner Bros Records chairman Russ Thyret said the Music single had topped the charts in 25 countries, which was "testimony to the universal appeal of Madonna and her overwhelming creativity."

Madonna is contracted to Warner Bros via her own Maverick Records imprint.

In New Zealand, the single reached the top this week after three weeks at No 5. The album hasn't dented the charts yet.

In the United States Madonna has topped the album charts on three other occasions, with 1984's Like a Virgin, 1986's True Blue and 1989's Like A Prayer.

The Music single marks her 12th United States No 1. The Beatles hold the record with 20 top singles.

Madonna's previous album, the critically acclaimed, Grammy-winning Ray of Light, debuted and peaked at No 2 in March 1998 with 370,500 copies sold.

It spent 78 weeks on the United States charts, selling about 3.3 million units.

The Music album ranks as the fourth best United States debut of 2000, after 'N Sync's No Strings Attached (first-week sales 2.4 million copies), Eminem's The Marshall Mathers LP (1.8 million) and Britney Spears' Oops! I Did It Again (1.3 million).

The last time Warner Bros topped the charts with a pop album was in November 1998 with Alanis Morissette's Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, also released through Maverick.

- NZPA

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