KiD CuDi's WZRD Debuts At No. 3 Despite Being Swept Under The Rug By Universal

from the the-fans-have-spoken dept

Last week we wrote about WZRD, the new album from KiD CuDi on which he went in an entirely different direction from his usual style. That's the kind of thing that makes big record labels nervous (they'd prefer artists just keep churning out variations on their first success) and CuDi's label Universal Republic was no exception. After the release, CuDi took to Twitter to vent:

Ok so just a heads up, my weak ass label only shipped 55k physicals cuz they treated this like some indie side project tax right off. So i apologize on behalf of my weak ass major label. And I apologize for the lack of promo, again, my weak ass major label. They tried to rush me thru this so i can just give em another MOTM, but guess what? Fuck that, next album is WZRD. MOTM3 on hold til 2014. who mad??? not me and @DotDaGenius. So its def gonna be tough to find one in the stores guys, I'm sorry about that.

Apparently fans were prepared to make the effort, because WZRD debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. This is especially funny in the wake of RIAA CEO Cary Sherman's recent interview, in which he claimed record labels were needed to "separate the wheat from the chaff" and "designate who is worth promoting and marketing". It seems the legacy gatekeepers aren't quite as good at curation as they think—at least I bet Universal is wishing they'd gotten a few more copies of WZRD out there, and put some promotional weight behind the project. Maybe, if they'd put a little faith in their own artist, they could have had a #1 on their hands.

Filed Under: kid cudi, labels, music, promotion, wzrd
Companies: universal music, universal republic


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  1. icon
    Leigh Beadon (profile), 8 Mar 2012 @ 6:06am

    Re: I'm confused...

    They shipped 55k physicals and he sold 66k. I'm not sure how many of that 66k were physicals, but it seems like the label was actually in the ballpark on sales forecast.

    It's kind of hard to say. Typically I don't think they want the album to completely disappear from shelves in its first week - or be hard to find. That's just going to reduce sales. Add that to the lack of promotion, and it definitely seems like this could have been an even bigger launch.

    I guess what I'm saying is, I think the 66k sales were held back by the 55k physicals - rather than the former being an accurate prediction of the latter. WZRD was the only debut in the Top 10 that week, which means it probably could have been #1 with a bit of hype

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