Beyonce releases new iTunes-exclusive album

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Beyonce has released her new album in an unconventional way: She announced and dropped it on the same day.
The singer released “Beyonce” exclusively on iTunes early Friday. She mirrors how Jay Z released “Magna Carta Holy Grail” earlier this year — through a deal with Samsung where he gave the album to 1 million users of Galaxy mobile phones days before its official release.
Beyonce’s fifth effort features 14 songs and 17 videos. Jay Z, Drake and Frank Ocean make guest appearances on the album, while the closing track, “Blue,” features her daughter, Blue Ivy. Justin Timberlake co-wrote the songs “Rocket” and “Partition,” and Pharrell, Timbaland, Ryan Tedder, Miguel and Sia also co-wrote tracks.
The album caused a stir on social media websites, with fans posting about the release early Friday morning. Twitter said early data shows mentions of Beyonce spiked by 500,000-plus tweets after she announced the album. Diddy, Alicia Keys and Demi Lovato were among the celebrities tweeting about the topic.Billboard said Friday that “Beyonce” will likely debut on top of its charts next week.
“Our early numbers are showing that this is likely heading toward a No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200 albums chart with only three days of the tracking week,” said Bill Werde, the editor of Billboard. Billboard closes the tracking week on Sundays, and typical albums are released on Monday or Tuesday.
On Friday afternoon, the explicit and clean versions of “Beyonce” ranked No. 1 and No. 2 on the iTunes albums chart.

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