*Nicki Minaj tops the Billboard 200 albums chart for the first time, as her “Pink Friday” set moves 3-1 in its 11th week on the list, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
“Pink” also pushes past the 1 million total sales mark this week — 1,035,000 total since its Nov. 22, 2010 release, reports Billboard.com.
“Pink Friday” initially debuted at No. 2 and has since spent its entire chart life in the top 10.
Minaj’s patient wait for her turn at No. 1 is a rare sight. For the most part, an album is only No. 1 because it debuted there. It’s unusual for a set to climb to the top. Case in point: in 2010, there were 30 albums that hit No. 1, but just one — Lil Wayne’s “I Am Not A Human Being” — actually rose to the top. Wayne debuted at No. 2 off of just downloads, then fell to No. 16 the next week, only to reach No. 1 the next once the CD version of the album dropped.
Before “Friday’s” ascent to the top, the last album to take longer to rise to No. 1 was way back on the chart dated March 5, 2005, when Ray Charles’ “Genius Loves Company” finally hit No. 1 in its 25th week. It zoomed 15-1 with 224,000 (up 202%) following its Grammy win for album of the year.
Minaj’s 18% sales gain could be attributed to sustained impact from her “Saturday Night Live” guest turn on Jan. 30, in addition to some surprising viral love from confessed fans Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez. The latter ladies can be found — separately — on YouTube rapping to the “Pink Friday” cut “Super Bass.” The two most popular clips have racked up more than 2 million views in the five days they’ve been online.
[Watch the Swift and Gomez covers, and Minaj’s latest video “Moment 4 Life” below.]