R&B singer Mariah Carey is headed straight for at No. 1 on next week’s U.S. pop album chart, after massive first-day sales, according to a survey of leading music retailers. Early data show that “E=MC2,” Carey’s follow-up to her 2005 multi-platinum outing “The Emancipation of Mimi,” sold 154,000 units Tuesday. That’s more than five times the first-day haul for the current Billboard 200 champ, Leona Lewis’ “Spirit,” which ended up selling almost 205,000 copies in the week ended April 13. The first-day sales are tallied on tracking firm Nielsen SoundScan’s Building Chart, which is based on data from nine chains — Trans World Entertainment, Starbucks, Best Buy, Circuit City, iTunes, Borders, Target, Anderson Merchandisers, and Handleman Co. Billboard estimates they represent 80% of the U.S. retail market. Final data will be released on Wednesday. “The Emancipation of Mimi,” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 404,000 copies. The first single from the new album, “Touch My Body,” has spent two weeks at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.
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