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The top spot on The Billboard 200, monopolized since early summer by hip-hoppers and teen idols, now belongs to a 42-year-old mother of two. Madonna rode her new album "Music" (Maverick/Warner Bros.), right to No. 1 on The Billboard 200 this week on the strength of 420,000 copies sold. The album debuted atop 22 other charts worldwide, according to the label.

"Music" is Madonna's first No. 1 album in 11 years, but her reign may not last long. The set will face a stiff challenge from boy band 98 Degrees' "Revelation" (Universal) next week; the first single from that release, "Give Me Just One Night (Una Noche)" is at No. 2 on The Billboard Hot 100 this week, right behind the title track of the Madonna album.

Last week's Billboard 200 chart-topper, rapper LL Cool J's "G.O.A.T" (Def Jam), fell to No. 5, while Nelly's "Country Grammar" (Fo' Reel/Universal) and Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP" (Web/Aftermath/Interscope) held at Nos. 2 and 3, respectively. Country veteran George Strait's self-titled MCA Nashville album debuted at No. 7 and went straight to the top of Billboard's Top Country Albums tally.

Competition is clearly picking up on The Billboard 200, as labels unleash their big guns for the holiday-selling season. The chart received 16 new entries this week and 23 last week; a big jump from the five new entries two weeks ago, and the 10 before that.

Opening in the top half of the chart were rapper Cam'ron's "S.D.E." (Untertainment/Epic) at No. 14; Fuel's "Something Like Human" (550) at No. 17 (a 60 place improvement over the peak position of their 1998 set "Sunburn"); Barbra Streisand's "Timeless: Live In Concert" (Columbia) at No. 21; Bjork's "Selmasongs" (Elektra) soundtrack to "Dancer In The Dark," in which she stars, at No. 41; and Amil's "A.M.I.L. (All Money Is Legal)" (Roc-A-Fella/Columbia) at No. 45.

Right behind was Tela's "The World Ain't Enuff" (Rap-A-Lot/Virgin) at No. 47; Nature's 'For All Seasons" (Track Masters/Columbia) at No. 50; Kandi's "Hey Kandi..." (Columbia) at No. 72; Willie Nelson's "Milk Cow Blues" (Island) at No. 83; country artist Terri Clark's "Fearless" (Mercury Nashville) at No. 85; and modern rock group Fastball's "The Harsh Light Of Day" (Hollywood) at No. 97.

Streisand's album further cements her reign over several categories. Among solo female artists, she has the most charted albums (48) and the most top-40 albums (41), and the longest chart career (37 1/2 years, dating back to the debut of the "The Barbra Streisand Album" the week of April 13, 1963).

Returning to The Billboard Hot 100, Erykah Badu's "Bag Lady" crashed into the top 10 at No. 6, up from No. 34 last week. Everclear's "Wonderful" was the fastest growing track at retail, while 'N Sync's "This I Promise You" was the top bloomer at radio, while enjoying a 68-31 climb. Ricky Martin's "She Bangs" was the week's top debut at No. 38, followed by Nelly's new single "E.I." at No. 71; U2's "Beautiful Day" at No. 75; Wyclef Jean's "911" featuring Mary J. Blige at No. 77; and the Dixie Chicks' "Without You" at No. 80.

The Badu track also raced to No. 1 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks, replacing Profyle's "Liar," which fell to No. 2. As a result, Motown earned its first consecutive chart-toppers since 1989, when the Boys' "Lucky Charm" and Today's "Girl I Got My Eyes On You" reached No. 1 consecutively.

U2's "Beautiful Day" continued its ascension of Billboard's rock airplay charts, as it jumped from No. 11 to No. 6 on Modern Rock Tracks and from No. 27 to No. 17 on Mainstream Rock Tracks. But it was Blink-182's "Man Overboard," a new song set to appear on the pop/punk trio's forthcoming live album, that made the most noise, rocketing from No. 31 to No. 11 on Modern Rock Tracks.

Radiohead's "Optimistic" debuted at No. 25 on that survey, a week before the U.K. band's long-awaited "Kid A" album (Capitol/EMI) hits stores across the world.
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