NEW YORK, NY. (Top40 Charts/ J Records) - British sensation Leona
Lewis has become the fourth best-selling artist worldwide in 2008, thanks to the extraordinary success of her debut album, the R.I.A.A. platinum-certified Spirit, which has sold more than four and a half million copies worldwide.
In addition, Spirit
has sold more than 1.17 million copies in the U.S. according to Nielsen SoundScan, making 23-year-old Lewis the seventh best-selling artist in the country so far in 2008.
Spirit, a mix of fresh pop and R&B, filled with songs with a contemporary edge, features an all-star roster of collaborators including Ryan Tedder ("Apologize"), famed songwriter/producers Akon (Gwen Stefani, T-Pain), Ne-Yo (Rihanna, Beyonce, Jennifer Hudson), Dallas Austin (Madonna, Gwen Stefani, Pink), Stargate (Rihanna, Beyonce, Ne-Yo), J.R. Rotem (Britney Spears, Sean Kingston), Max Martin (Kelly Clarkson, Britney Spears), and Lukasz "Dr. Luke" Gottwald (Kelly Clarkson, Avril Lavigne). For the first time, Clive Davis and Simon Cowell teamed up to sign Lewis to J Records/SyCo Music (Cowell's division of Sony BMG), and together produced Spirit.
Spirit has been on a record-breaking tear ever since its release in November 2007 in the U.K., where it entered the British album chart at No. 1 and became the U.K.'s fastest-selling debut of all time. In the U.S., Spirit debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard album chart a week after its release by J Records/SyCo Music on April 8th, 2008, marking the first time in music history that any album by a British female artist has entered Billboard's Top 200 album chart at No. 1, as well as the first time any British artist, male or female, has claimed the top spot with a debut album.
Beyond the incredible record breaking sales and radio stories, Leona has been embraced by the media: Oprah Winfrey exclaimed: "Wow, Talk about a 'Star Is Born! You're the real deal, girl!'" Blender's cover story stated "Mariah, Leona Lewis is Pop's Next Megastar" and Vibe describes her as "a balladeer with grace, vivacity, and dignity ... with a strong lithe tone that could peel paint ..."
No doubt, much of Spirit's success can be attributed to its blockbuster smash single "Bleeding Love," co-written by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder, which reached No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 the week of March 27th, making Lewis the first British female solo artist to top the Hot 100 in more than 21 years. The single spent 35 weeks on the chart, four of them at No. 1 (breaking yet another all-time record for a British female solo artist) and smashed the radio spin record with the most weekly plays ever in a one-week period at the Top 40 radio format with 10,665 spins. "Bleeding Love," the biggest selling single of the year has been a Billboard Digital Song chart-topper and has sold more than 3 million tracks in the U.S., while the ringtone has been certified platinum with over 1.4 million sold, with a total of nearly 5 million digital and mobile track sales combined.
Leona's new massive hit single "Better In Time" is climbing up the charts and currently holds the No 4 spot on the Top 40 chart, and has sold over 1 million digital and mobile tracks combined.
For more about Leona Lewis, please visit her official website, http://www.leonalewismusic.com