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Pop Smoke Joins Biggie and Tupac With Posthumous No. 1 Debut Album

Photo: Steven Ferdman/Shutterstock

The late rapper and icon of Brooklyn drill Pop Smoke further cemented his legacy last week with his posthumous debut album, Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon, now one of just a few posthumous albums to hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200. Pop Smoke joins the ranks of the Notorious B.I.G., 2Pac, and XXXTentacion, whose Skins was the chart’s last posthumous No. 1 when it debuted in December 2018. Shoot for the Stars delivered on album sales after a quiet month on the charts, with 59,000 of its 251,000 album units coming from sales (most of those through merch bundles). The star-studded album follows Pop Smoke’s mixtapes, Meet the Woo and Meet the Woo 2, the latter of which peaked at No. 7.

Pop Smoke isn’t the only one setting records on this week’s albums chart. The Hamilton cast album rocketed to an all-time high of No. 2 thanks to the movie version of the behemoth Broadway musical hitting Disney+. That’s the highest placement for a Broadway-cast album since Hair hit No. 1 in 1969, Billboard notes. Hamilton’s previous peak of No. 3 tied it with The Book of Mormon. Hamilton was buoyed by 32,000 album sales, one of just five musical cast recordings to sell at least 32,000 units in a week. (The others? The London-cast recording of Phantom of the Opera, the London-cast Highlights recording of Phantom, Rent, and The Book of Mormon. Springsteen on Broadway also did it, if you count the Boss as a one-man cast.) This week is Hamilton’s sixth total week of selling that many albums and its biggest sales week since moving 37,000 albums at Christmas 2016. It also comes during the cast album’s 250th consecutive week on the Billboard 200 — since its debut, the Hamilton original-cast recording has never left the chart. Only one cast recording has spent more consecutive time on the chart: the Highlights album from the original London production of Phantom of the Opera, which logged 313 weeks. Only 64 more weeks to go before Hamilton can break that record, but as the man himself would probably say, “Just you wait.”

Pop Smoke Joins Biggie and Tupac With Posthumous No. 1 Debut