De La Soul re-enters Billboard 200 after catalog hits streaming

The hip-hop trio's 1989 debut album, "3 Feet High and Rising," reached No. 15 on the Billboard 200 after their first six albums premiered on digital streaming platforms on March 3.

De La Soul has returned to the Billboard charts. The legendary hip-hop trio’s debut album re-enters the Billboard 200 after the catalog hit streaming services earlier this month.

The group’s first six albums hit streaming services like Spotify, YouTube and Amazon Music on March 3. The albums also became available on CD, cassette and vinyl after long being out of print. Their 1989 debut, “3 Feet High and Rising,” has seen the most activity, as evident on the Billboard charts.

“3 Feet” re-entered the Billboard 200 at No. 15 after garnering 26,000 units for the week. Twenty-one thousand of the 26,000 units came from album sales, including 14,000 in vinyl LPs sold. The album earned 4,000 streaming-equivalent album units. In addition to the Billboard 200, “3 Feet” entered the Billboard Top Rap Album chart at No. 4 and the Top R&B-Hip-Hop chart at No. 8.

(Left to right) Kelvin “Posnudos” Mercer, Vincent “Maseo” Mason, and David “Trugoy the Dove” Jolicoeur of De La Soul seen at The Millers Wrap Party at the Levi’s Haus on March 22, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Levis Strauss/AP Images)

Fans’ attention on numerous tracks from “3 Feet” helped push the album back onto the charts. Its most popular single, “Me, Myself and I,” had one million on-demand streams, by far the most of any of De La Soul’s songs since March 3. Two more “3 Feet” tracks, “The Magic Number” and “Eye Know,” were the second and third most streamed songs, with 618,000 and 511,000 streams, respectively.

The accompanying music videos for “Me, Myself and I” and “Eye Know” were re-uploaded to De La Soul’s official YouTube page. Also available on YouTube are the remaining videos from “3 Feet,” “Say No Go,” and “Potholes in My Lawn.”

The other five De La Soul albums available for streaming include 1991’s “De La Soul is Dead,” 1993’s “Buhloone Mindstate,” 1996’s “Stakes is High,” 2000’s “Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump,” and 2001’s “AOI: Bionix.” The “Stakes is High” title track is the group’s fourth most streamed track, with 289,000 hits.

De La Soul announced in January their Tommy Boy Records catalog would hit streaming services in March after a lengthy battle with the label over sample clearances and revenue sharing. Unfortunately, on Feb. 12, co-founder David “Trugoy the Dove” Jolicoeur died weeks before the albums hit streaming services.

The surviving members of De La Soul, Kelvin “Posnudos” Mercer, and Vincent “Maseo” Mason, celebrated the streaming release and Jolicoeur’s legacy at a March 2 release party, “The D.A.I.S.Y. Experience,” at New York’s Webster Hall. Hip-hop legends like Queen Latifah, Q-Tip, Common, and comedian Dave Chappelle attended. 

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