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Roger Friedman:

It didn’t help that Sean "Diddy" Combs’ album, "Press Play," upon which millions were spent, was a total dud. Even though critics loved it, and the single “Last Night” can be heard in every club and at every party, the album barely went gold. In the past, Combs’ albums sold millions.

Warner spent somewhere in the neighborhood of $10 million to go into business with Combs on his Bad Boy Entertainment after it was dropped by the Universal Music Group.

Combs did have a couple of minor hits last year with his acts, but nothing on the scale of his former successes.

Now, I've dealt with Friedman before. You have to keep in mind that "Celebrity Gossip" is in the title of the page. That's his style of writing. Very well.

So, with that style, I often don't bother mentioning it. But, since he's at and since I'm in the right mood, I guess you could say (and it's a slow news day), let's give it a go.

First of all, a #1 album is a #1 album. End of story. There are only 52 opportunities for a #1 album in the year. There are not that many of them, of course, as albums stay at #1 for more than one week sometimes. The point is, it's a big accomplishment, no matter how you slice it. Bad Boy had not 1, but 2 #1 albums in 2006. There was also a #3, a #4 and Christian Daniels' didn't chart.

So, let's talk past success. What years has Bad Boy had that strong of a Billboard 200 peak presence or close, anyway? (2006 is at the end to compare).

1997: 3 #1's.
2004: 2 #2's, #3, 2 #4's, #12, #93, NR
2006: 2 #1's, #3, #4, NR

You cannot hold Diddy to the sales of "No Way Out" just as you cannot hold any other artist to their best selling album. Those are special albums where all the stars align. It's not going to happen every time. Were his sales a bit lower than I was expecting? Yes. Dud? No.

You also need to keep the times in mind, as well. Records aren't selling like they did in 1997. In 1997, Bad Boy had 3 releases, they were certified Diamond, 7x Platinum and 4x Platinum. That's 3 artists that were 4x Platinum from the same label. How many artists went 4x Platinum in 2006? Exactly. There is not a single album on the Top 76 R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart right now that is certified more than 2x Platinum. "Press Play" has had 3 Hot 100 charting singles, coming in at #8 (Come to Me), #47 (Tell Me) and #64 (Last Night, which is still rising). It's certified gold and it didn't just go gold, it's been certified since November. It has been a successful album.

Finally, let's talk about Bad Boy having a "couple of minor hits last year with his acts, but nothing on the scale of [it's] former successes".

Minor hits? You could make a case for "It's Goin' Down" being the biggest single of the year. It peaked at #3 on the Hot 100, but it was certified as 2x Platinum. That insane because it just doesn't happen that much anymore. As a point of reference, let's look at the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart (top 100). How many singles are certified anything? Zero. There is not a single song that is even certified gold. "It's Goin' Down" wasn't just certified Gold... or even Platinum... but 2x Platinum. That's not a minor hit - that's a huge hit.

"Come to Me" reached #8. "Show Stopper" reached #8. Me & U reached #3. These are not minor hits. Even if they are, they are more than a "couple", i.e. 2. (Plus, Bad Boy had 6 other charting singles including "I Know You See It", which reached #17). Now, comparing that to past success, it's not in competition for the greatest year or anything, no. But, Bad Boy had 4 top 10 singles. I'm not sure if my data is 100%, but based upon it, here are the years that Bad Boy has had 4 top 10 singles or more.

1997: 5 (#1, #1, #1, #1, #6).
1998: 4 (#2, #6, #7, #8) ("Come With Me" released by Sony is excluded).

Now, we all know that 1997 was a huge, historic year for Bad Boy. But, that cannot be used as a measuring stick. The fact is, 2006 was one of the best years, chart wise, that Bad Boy has ever had. It was a great year. Friedman continually minimizes Bad Boy's successes. I have no idea why, but he does.