Teen pop, hip hop, and veteran rockers all made their mark in a surprising year
'N Sync
Credit: N Sync: Len Irish/Corbis Outline

The world may not have ended in Y2K, but that didn’t stop the year from becoming one of the weirdest in recent musical history. Sure, teen pop led the way as it had in 1999, with multiplatinum sales from ‘N Sync, Backstreet Boys, Britney, and Christina. But who was that unstoppable, chest flashing artist at No. 4? (No, we’re not talking about Ms. Spears; it’s Creed’s Scott Stapp.) And excuse me, but did you say spots No. 5 and No. 6 went to vets of the (original) Woodstock generation? (Yes, that would be Santana and the Beatles.)

Other surprises included the arrival of Northern California thrashers Papa Roach (No. 20), the emergence of neo- soulstress Macy Gray (No. 22), and the improbable hit (”Who Let the Dogs Out”) that turned into an even more improbable album smash for the Baha Men (No. 24). So as you ponder 2000’s top 25 sellers (below), you might start considering what surprises 2001 holds in store. A reissued Nirvana at No. 1, anyone?

1. ‘N Sync: ”No Strings Attached,” (Jive) 9.94 million
2. Eminem: ”The Marshall Mathers LP,” (Aftermath/ Interscope) 7.92 million
3. Britney Spears: ”Oops!…I Did It Again,” (Jive) 7.89 million
4. Creed: ”Human Clay,” (Wind-Up)** 6.59 million
5. Santana: ”Supernatural,” (Arista)** 5.86 million
6. The Beatles: ”1,” (Capitol) 5.07 million
7. Nelly: ”Country Grammar,” (Fo’ Real/ Universal) 5.07 million
8. Backstreet Boys: ”Black & Blue,” (Jive) 4.29 million
9. Dr. Dre: ”Dr. Dre 2001,” (Aftermath/ Interscope)** 3.99 million
10. Destiny’s Child: ”The Writing?s on the Wall,” (Columbia)** 3.80 million
11. 3 Doors Down: ”The Better Life,” (Republic/ Universal) 3.80 million
12. Christina Aguilera: ”Christina Aguilera,” (RCA)** 3.77 million
13. Limp Bizkit: ”Chocolate Starfish…,” (Flip/ Interscope) 3.74 million
14. Dixie Chicks: ”Fly,” (Monument)** 3.52 million
15. Sisqó: ”Unleash the Dragon,” (Def Soul)** 3.49 million
16. Faith Hill: ”Breathe,” (Warner Bros.)** 3.37 million
17. Various Artists: ”NOW…! Vol. 5,” (Sony/ Zomba/ UME/ EMI) 3.16 million
18. DMX: ”…And Then There Was X,” (Ruff Ryders/ Def Jam)** 3.09 million
19. Kid Rock: ”Devil Without a Cause,” (Top Dog/ Lava/ Atlantic)** 2.80 million
20. Papa Roach: ”Infest,” (DreamWorks/ Interscope) 2.71 million
21. Celine Dion: ”All the Way…A Decade of Song,” (550/ Epic)** 2.70 million
22. Macy Gray: ”On How Life Is,” (Epic)** 2.67 million
23. matchbox twenty: ”Mad Season,” (Lava/ Atlantic) 2.53 million
24. Baha Men: ”Who Let the Dogs Out,” (S-Curve/ Artemis) 2.40 million
25. Various Artists: ”NOW…! Vol. 4 ,” (EMI/ Sony/ Zomba/ UME) 2.38 million

Copyright ©2001 by Soundscan, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
*Numbers reflect sales Jan. 3 – Dec. 31, 2000
**Released prior to 2000; figures reflect 2000 sales only