Another week, another great showing from R&B artists on the sales charts.  Drake’s boy and fellow Toronto artist The Weeknd managed to nab the top spot here this week, and he did it all with only dropping three original tracks.  Look for Nicki Minaj to follow suit when her Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded - The Re Up drops, although some retailers have not chomped at the bid to carry the re-release so the numbers may end up being modest.  Also, with Rihanna’s seventh studio effort projected to tear up the charts, there may not be much room for R&B and female artist sales.  For now we have three R&B artists making an appearance on Charts Don’t Lie and the only two rappers are two of the biggest names in the game who dropped two of the most hotly anticipated projects.  With hip hop artists generally pushing their work back, it will be intriguing to watch who makes noise on these charts as we roundup 2012.  There are some notable releases including Big Boi and of course Wiz Khalifa, but the majority of hip hop acts have decided to shelve their albums until the new year so we may very well be inundated with R&B on these charts for the next six weeks.

1) The WeekndTrilogy:  This was The Weeknd’s major label (semi) debut, as he rehashed his previous three free projects and packaged them as Trilogy, which also features three new tracks.   Each new cut was received well and looks like the Toronto native is poised to do huge things when he finally releases a full studio album as this effort still managed to push 90,970 units in its first week, which was good for No. 4 on the Billboard charts.  As this is a re-release of sorts, don’t expect it to stay high on the charts for long, but this is an indicator that The Weeknd can definitely move units.

2) Kendrick Lamargood kid, m.A.A.d city:  GKMC holds steady and adds an additional 30k to its totals.  Kendrick dropped only 18% in sales and you can expect to see this album on the charts for awhile more.   With the overwhelming positive reviews, don’t be surprised if this album continues to sell for years to come, and we will probably see a spike in sales whenever K.Dot drops a new project.

3) Ne-YoR.E.D. : While R&B artists continue to sell, Ne-Yo is one who had a solid showing, but really underperformed compared to his previous releases.   This is more a comment on how sales are shaping up today.  R.E.D. fell hard from No. 4 on Billboard’s 200 all the way to No. 26.  He racked up only a third as many sales as his debut week. 

4) Meek MillDreams & Nightmares:  After only a few weeks on the charts, Meek Mill’s album is dropping fast.  Last week it was No. 9 and this week it is all the way down at No. 28 on Billboard 200.  This could be a result for critics and fans not responding favorably to the LP so word of mouth has not been great, and the initial boost from MMG marketing, and major features has worn off.

5) MiguelKaleidoscope Dream:  He might have only sold 12,955 units but Miguel is holding steady only seeing  a 5% decline from last week.  Look for his sales to shoot back up after he heads out on tour with Alicia Keys.  Kaleidoscope Dreams is shaping up to be one of the surprise albums of the year. 

Sadly, this was the first week we saw the seemingly unstoppable effort from 2 ChainzBased on a T.R.U. Story, absent from the charts.  Don’t expect his name to go anywhere however, as he continues to jump on major features and was even on the cover of The Source’s “Man of the Year” issue.  Brandy’s comeback album Two Eleven also saw a steep decline and failed to make the charts after only a few weeks.  She had a decent showing, but did not manage to create the buzz which has become a requisite to see your album continue to sell (see: 2 Chainz).