John Legend's New Album, Evolver, Enters Billboard Top 200 at #4
Grammy Award Winning Artist's Third Studio Album Peaks at #1 on Nation's R&B Album Chart, #1 on Album Retailer Chart & #1 on Digital Albums Chart
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The multi-platinum-selling multiple-Grammy-winning recording artist John Legend has just achieved his third consecutive Top 10 album debut as EVOLVER, his brand-new studio collection, enters the Billboard Top 200 best-selling albums chart at #4, with first week's sales of 132,823 pieces, according to SoundScan.
A crossover sensation, EVOLVER has reached the #1 position on America's R&B Album chart, #1 on the Album Retailer chart and #1 on the Digital Albums chart.
EVOLVER is being met with widespread commercial success and critical acclaim.
"Lots of R&B dudes promise opulent nights of ecstasy," wrote Jody Rosen for RollingStone.com (October 30, 2008), "but Legend is so classy that these fantasies seem like real journalism. With piano-flecked soul ("This Time"), lite funk ("Green Light") and reggae ("No Other Love"), EVOLVER's tunes and arrangements are as impeccable as the cut of Legend's suits...."
"John Legend's voice is constitutionally incapable of veering off-key, much less cracking or hiccupping," observed Simon Vozick-Levinson in Entertainment Weekly's review of EVOLVER. "That kind of polish can give his music a certain adult-contemporary flavor....Legend is still at his best when he plays to his voice's strengths with clean-cut ballads like 'Everybody Knows.'"
"John Legend made his mark by showing up fully coated in vintage Philadelphia soul, but this aptly titled third album finds him shelving his silky throwback vibe for a collection of tracks more interested in 808s and heartbreak," said Billboard.com's Jeff Vrabel. "Legend's voice remains beyond reproach...an oasis of style and soul in a sea of synthetic, robo-call R&B.... Legend scores...on the reggae-twisted 'No Other Love,' the ready-made Obama rally theme 'If You're Out There' and the soaring 'Everybody Knows,' a tear-streaked lament that ends with the great line, 'I wish you the best/I guess.'"
John Legend recently joined forces with the CBS Television Network to help support EVOLVER's release on October 28.
"Green Light," the album's first single, became an instrumental component in CBS's fall lineup promotional campaign, "The Biggest November Ever is Ready to Go on CBS," while a variety of tracks from EVOLVER were heard during CBS daytime and prime time programming on October 28 and 30. In addition, John Legend has been making high-profile appearances on CBS's morning news and late night programming.
About John Legend
Released in late December 2004, John Legend's debut album, Get Lifted, peaked at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart and became America's #1 Top R&B/Hip-Hop album in January 2005. A critical and commercial triumph, Get Lifted earned John an astounding eight Grammy nominations -- he won Best New Artist, Best Male R&B Vocal Performance ("Ordinary People") and Best R&B album -- while selling more than three million copies worldwide.
John's second collection, Once Again, entered the Billboard Top 200 at #3 shortly after its release in October 2006, peaking at #1 on the R&B Album Sales chart, earning an RIAA platinum certification while securing two Grammy nominations: "Save Room" (for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance) and "Heaven" (which won Best Male R&B Vocal Performance).
John racked up his fifth overall career Grammy win in 2006 when "Family Affair" -- a track he'd cut with Joss Stone and Van Hunt for Different Strokes by Different Folks, a Sly & the Family Stone tribute album (Epic/Legacy) -- took home top honors in the Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals category.
In 2007, John Legend launched the Show Me Campaign (ShowMeCampaign.org), a grassroots movement whose mission is "to fight economic and spiritual poverty through fostering sustainable development (personal, social, educational, economic) at the individual, family, and small community levels."
John Legend's EVOLVER is one of the most heavily anticipated releases of 2008. Songs on the album include the single "Green Light" (featuring ANDRE 3000), "It's Over" (featuring Kanye West), "Everybody Knows," "No Other Love" (featuring Estelle), "Satisfaction," "This Time," "Cross The Line," "I Love, You Love," "Good Morning," "If You're Out There," and "Quickly" (featuring Brandy).
Following the release of EVOLVER, John Legend will embark on an extensive worldwide concert tour kicking off November 19 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The first leg of John's North American tour wraps up December 13 with a second leg running from January 12 through February 9. Additional tour dates TBA
* * * * * John Legend - 2008 Tour Dates Wed 11/19 Minneapolis, MN Northrop Auditorium Thu 11/20 Chicago, IL Chicago Theatre Mon 11/24 E. Lansing, MI Wharton Center For Performing Arts Wed 11/26 Detroit, MI Masonic Temple Theatre Fri 11/28 Toronto, Ont. Roy Thompson Hall Sat 11/29 Montclair, NJ Wellmont Theatre Mon 12/1 Montclair, NJ Wellmont Theatre Tue 12/2 Boston, MA Orpheum Theatre Fri 12/5 Philadelphia, PA Tower Theater Mon 12/8 Baltimore, MD Lyric Theatre Tue 12/9 Washington, DC Constitution Hall Wed 12/10 Greenville, SC Peace Center Fri 12/12 Charlotte, NC Ovens Auditorium Sat 12/13 Durham, NC Durham Performing Arts Center * * * * * www.johnlegend.com www.myspace.com/johnlegend www.johnlegendnetwork.com www.showmecampaign.org www.columbiarecords.com
First Call Analyst:
SOURCE: Columbia Records
CONTACT: Yvette Noel-Schure, Columbia Records, +1-212-833-4483,