Entertainment behind the scenes
Jessica Simpson’s country career DOA
The perky pop singer, the gossip mag breathlessly informed us, debuted at No. 1 on the U.S. country albums chart with her first Nashville foray, “Do You Know.”
“I’m extremely touched by the overwhelmingly positive response to the album,” In Touch quoted Simpson as saying. “There is so much honesty and raw emotion in there. And, I’m just thrilled that country fans are giving it a chance!”
But, to be honest, her sixth album failed to roar. It sold just 65,000 copies during its first week in U.S. stores, according to Nielsen SoundScan. That’s good enough for only the No. 4 spot on the Billboard 200 chart, which includes albums of all genres.
Simpson’s last album, the much-hyped “A Public Affair,” debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 in 2006 after selling 101,000 copies. And that was considered a disaster given all the media attention lavished on her personal life. It has sold a mere 300,000 copies to date, far short of the 2.9 million total for her previous album, 2003′s “In This Skin.”
According to a feature in the latest Entertainment Weekly, Simpson is part of a horde of pop singers going country, and the folks in Nashville are inevitably a bit skeptical. Simpson told the magazine that she views music as “a hobby,” because the real cash is generated by her lucrative fashion line. Country fans have clearly indicated that it might be time to find another hobby.
If there’s any consolation for Simpson, she finally managed to outsell her younger sister. Ashlee Simpson’s third album, “Bittersweet World,” debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 in April with 47,000 copies. Her previous albums both debuted at No. 1, an achievement that continues to elude big sis.
(Reporting by Dean Goodman, Photo by Reuters)