(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Neil Diamond's new album, 12 Songs, has debuted at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 and is the artist's first album to debut in the Top 10. Released on November 8, with first true week's sales of 92,705, according to SoundScan, 12 Songs is providing the strongest opening week's numbers of Neil's career. His last studio album, Three Chord Opera, opened at #15. His highest previous debut position, with first week's sales of 67,975, was in July 2001.
The first Diamond album to be released digitally, 12 Songs sold 4,057 digital copies online in its first week, making it the nation's #2 Top Internet Album. Digital downloads accounted for 4.3% of 12 Songs sales in its first week.
12 Songs is the first Diamond album to hit the Top 10 since The Christmas Album peaked at #8 in 1992 and is the singer's first Top 5 album since The Jazz Singer peaked at #3 in 1981.
12 Songs is already one of the highest charting albums in his entire catalog, beating 1972's Moods (peaked at #5), 1973's Hot August Night (peaked at #5), and 1982's Heartlight (peaked at #9) while tying 1976's Beautiful Noise (peaked at #4) and 1979's You Don't Bring Me Flowers (also peaked at #4).
The only Diamond albums to have charted higher than 12 Songs are 1973's Jonathan Livingston Seagull (peaked at #2, his best-charting album), 1974's Serenade (peaked at #3) and 1981's The Jazz Singer (also peaked at #3).
12 Songs is the 14th Diamond album to reach the Top 10, the 20th to hit Top 20, the 31st to make Top 50 and the 45th to break into the Billboard Top 200, placing the artist at #6 on the all-time list of male vocalists with the most Top 200 albums (after Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Johnny Mathis, James Brown, and Willie Nelson). –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen