Taylor Swift earns seventh No. 1 album debut with ‘Folklore’

Emilee Geist

Taylor Swift’s winning streak continues. 

The red-hot pop star’s “Folklore” debuted atop the Billboard charts, according to data released Sunday. It’s her seventh album to debut at No. 1, following in the footsteps of “Lover,” “Reputation,” “1989,”  “Red,” “Speak Now” and “Fearless.”

“Folklore” racked up 846,000 equivalent album units for the week ending July 30, including 615,000 in album sales, 218,000 in on-demand audio streams for the album’s songs and 13,000 in track-equivalent sales, according to Nielsen Music.

It’s the biggest week for any album since 2019’s “Lover,” which had 867,000 equivalent album units in its first week.

Among women, only Barbra Streisand (with 11) and Madonna (with nine) have more No. 1 albums. Swift’s seventh No. 1 ties her with Janet Jackson. 

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Swift, 30, surprised fans by announcing “Folklore” on Twitter just hours before its release. Reviews have been extremely positive. USA TODAY’s Patrick Ryan called it her “most introspective and emotionally raw album yet.”

The album brims with vivid imagery, as Swift likens herself to a favorite sweater on “Cardigan” and a “Mirrorball” that will “show you every version of yourself tonight.” Album standout “Invisible String” is perhaps the prettiest love song in Swift’s entire catalog, but is not without her biting wit: “Cold was the steel of my ax to grind for the boys who broke my heart / Now I send their babies presents.”

Review: ‘Folklore’ is the album Taylor Swift was born to make

“Folklore” hasn’t been without controversy though. Swift publicly apologized after she was accused of copying a merchandise logo from a Black designer. She also pledged to make donations to the designer’s company and to the Black in Fashion Council.

Amira Rasool, founder of the online retailer The Folklore, which sells “Africa and the diaspora’s top contemporary designer brands,” accused the singer of copying her company’s logo.

In a statement shared with USA TODAY Friday by representative Tree Paine, Swift’s team detailed the actions taken after the complaint.

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“Yesterday, we were made aware of a complaint that the specific use of the word ‘the’ before ‘folklore album’ on some of the folklore album merchandise was of concern,” the statement read. “Absolutely no merchandise using ‘the’ before the words ‘folklore album’ has been manufactured or sent out.

“In good faith, we honored her request and immediately notified everyone who had ordered merchandise with the word ‘the’ preceding ‘folklore album’ that they will now receive their order with the design change.”

Contributing: Sara M Moniuszko and Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Taylor Swift: ‘Folklore’ is her seventh No. 1 debut on Billboard chart

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