The Georgia rapper Gunna has taken the top spot on the latest Billboard album chart. And now all eyes in the music industry are on Lady Gaga, whose “Chromatica,” which came out Friday, is a test of the superstar album release during Covid-19.
Gunna’s “Wunna” became the rapper’s first No. 1 album, with the equivalent of 111,000 sales in the United States, according to Nielsen Music. Almost all of that total was attributed to streaming activity, with fans clicking on Gunna’s songs 144 million times in the album’s first week out.
“Wunna” extends hip-hop’s recent dominance of the album chart. It features guest spots from a fraternity of some of rap’s streaming kings, including Travis Scott, Roddy Ricch, Lil Baby and Young Thug — whose label, YSL, Gunna is signed to.
Also on this week’s chart, Lil Baby’s “My Turn” is No. 2 and Future’s “High Off Life” fell two spots to No. 3. “Notes on a Conditional Form” by the British band the 1975 opened at No. 4 with the equivalent of 54,000 sales, and Polo G’s “The Goat” is No. 5.
“Chromatica” has been one of the year’s most anticipated releases, the culmination of a long career comeback. The album — Lady Gaga’s first solo studio LP in four years — also appeared to be one of the first high-profile casualties of Covid-19, when Lady Gaga announced a delay in March.
Yet that delay ended up lasting only seven weeks. The album is expected to open at No. 1 on next week’s chart, with help from the single “Rain on Me” featuring Ariana Grande, which hit No. 1 on the Hot 100 this week, and an array of deals on Lady Gaga’s website that bundle the album with sales of merchandise like $30 pink jockstraps.
Lady Gaga has also booked a six-date stadium tour this summer in Europe and North America. As with most other major tours this year, it is not expected to go on as planned, although tickets remain on sale. A spokeswoman for Lady Gaga did not respond to a request for comment about the status of the tour.