Kanye West, Jay-z: Sitting atop of the Throne

Kanye West, left, and Jay-Z are shown here rapping together in the beginning of the year, before their collaboration was known as the Throne.

The numbers are in. No. 1 in 23 countries on iTunes, the Jay-Z and Kanye West (known collectively as the Throne) collaborative album “Watch the Throne” has been a commercial smash. But financial windfalls notwithstanding, why would two of hip-hop’s biggest stars even bother with the project in the first place, especially when each rapper is at the top of his game?

The answer might be in the project’s first video, “Otis.” Smiling as they trade verses and ride in a Maybach that gets the “Mad Max” treatment, they look like they are having fun with no rules.
“That’s the beauty in it. They didn’t need to do it for money. Not worried about radio singles or marketing campaigns, they just went in and produced what they thought was a dope album,” explains Geespin, assistant program director of New York’s Power 105 FM.

The presentation of the album was unprecedented. It was for sale exclusively through iTunes, while streaming online for free from Aug. 8-11. Then it hit all digital and physical retailers on Aug. 12. This allowed the Throne to dodge that most treacherous of artistic enemies in this digital age, the Internet leak.

The set also broke the U.S. iTunes Store’s one-week sales record last week when it sold nearly 290,000 downloads.

With the physical sales added to the digital, “Watch the Throne” is a lock for the top spot when Billboard updates its charts today.

In the music business, success usually breeds imitation. Are we on the brink of seeing more special projects like this? Will there be an heir to the Throne, so to speak? Geespin thinks so.

“I wish that more artists in the position would be more conceptual instead of thinking radio spins,” he says. “It’s good for the culture.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.