Never Gonna Give It Up: Rick Astley Battling For First U.K. Number 1 Since Debut

by VVN Music

Rick Astley has been part of internet jokes for almost five years with the infamous "Rickrolling" where a link is placed on a post or story talking about some fabulous item or fact which just leads to the video of Astley singing his hit Never Gonna Give You Up.

Well, Astley may be about to get his revenge on those who were using his music for fun. Last week, he released his eighth studio album, 50, and, as of Wenesday, it is trailing the top selling album in the U.K. by just a handful of units.

According to the Official Charts Company, on Monday when the mid-week charts came out, Tom O'Dell's album Wrong Crowd was just 218 chart units (sales + album equivalent track sales + album equivalent streaming). By the end of the day on Wednesday, that lead was down to just 14 units.

If Astley can overcome O'Dell by the end of the day Thursday when the chart week closes, he will have the second number 1 album of his career after his 1987 debut. No matter what happens, 50, will be his highest charting album since that debut as the followup, Hold Me In Your Arms, peaked at 8 in 1988.

Right behind O'Dell and Astley on the mid-week chart is Paul McCartney with his compilation Pure McCartney. ELO was at 4 with All Over the World: The Very Best of ELO, Beverley Knight at 6 with Soulsville, Paul Simon at 8 with Stranger to Stranger and Garbage at 10 with Strange Little Birds. That means the potential is there for veteran artists to take six of the top ten albums.

Veteran debuts lower on the chart include The Essential Collection by Gilbert O'Sullivan at 12, Clean Your Clock by Motorhead at 18, But Seriously: Deluxe Edition at 26, It's Too Late to Stop Now, Volumes 2, 3 & 4 by Van Morrison at 27, The Essential Going Back by Collins at 31, Twentyears by Air at 57 and The Island Years by Ultravox at 97.

That's quite the week for the veterans of music.

Final numbers will be out on Friday.

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