American Songwriter Reads the Charts: Chickenfoot was Robbed

Videos by American Songwriter

It could have all gone so differently for Chickenfoot.

The rock supergroup, comprised of Joe Satriani, Van Halen’s Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony, and Chili Peppers’ drummer Chad Smith, should, by rights, be ruling the roost right now.

Instead their self-titled album took sixth place in the great Chart race, even though it doesn’t get much better than a band naming themselves Chickenfoot, rocking with their cocks out (get it?), and existing to snub two bands at once (the current incarnation of Van Halen, and Coldplay, who Satriaini is suing for melody-infringement. Who’s the has-been now?).

So who can we blame here? You can start with Dave Matthews — who’s famous Band reached no. 1 on the Billboard 200 with their first album in four years, Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King. It’s the jam band’s fifth consecutive studio album to debut in the top spot. Maybe the 90s are back, as former chart toppers 311 reached No. 3 with their latest album, Uplifter. According to, It’s simultaneously the highest chart position the band’s achieved, and their lowest opening sales week for a debut album. You win some, you lose some.

Speaking of the 90s, Rancid debuted at #11 with their first album in six years, Dominoes. Elvis Costello wasn’t far behind; his new T Bone Burnett produced album, Secret, Profane & Sugarcane, came in at #13, actually his highest chart position for a debut album since 1980’s Get Happy!!! (which came in at #11.) Congratulations, Elvis.

The skinny:

Album sales reached 6.38 million units this week, up 10.9% compared to last week’s total (5.75 million) and down 15.6% compared to the same week in 2008 (7.56 million). Year to date album sales hit 155.1 million, down 14% from last year (179.3 million).

The top ten albums in the country this week:

1. Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King – Dave Matthews Band
2. The Relapse – Eminem
3. Uplifter – 311
4. 21st Century Breakdown – Green Day
5. Hannah Montana: The Movie – Soundtrack
6. Chickenfoot – Chickenfoot
7. New Again – Taking Back Sunday
8. The Fame – Lady GaGa
9. Greatest Hits II – Kenny Chesney
10. Fearless – Taylor Swift


Leave a Reply
  1. Actually, Chickenfoot debuted at #4 in Soundscan. Soundscan issued a re-run report. Plus–this was a TWO DAY sales figure. The record was released off-cycle, and retailers like Target didn’t even have it in-store. Not to say DMB isn’t far and away Number One–they are. But Chickenfoot is going to sell for the long haul–it is a great AUTHENTIC rock record…

  2. Quit trying to justify Chickenfoots pathetic sales . Considering the big names and all the hype Chickenfoot is a flop. The sales figure is from fri- mon that gives fans 4 days to buy the cd . And look at how sad those figues are 49,000 for a band they called a supergroup over and over again.Next week the sales will be even less.CHICKENFOOT DOA R.I.P

  3. what hype? internet hype? There was no big advertising campaign, and the single was played on rock radio only. The album was also self financed.

    The sales figures were higher than i expected. They did well.

Leave a Reply

Songwriters Hall of Fame to Hold Master Class with Lamont Dozier, Award Abe Olman Scholarship