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WK 9: Candy Shop with 25K in Prizes
50 Cent Dumps the Game
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image of Dean TsouvalasThe rags to riches story of 50 Cent is legendary - ex-drug dealer with nine gunshot wounds, who transforms himself into music superstar with a first-time album Get Rich or Die Tryin. The album becomes rap's best-selling debut disk of all time. And 50 hasn't stopped with music as he has morphed from gansta, to record mogul, to clothing designer and now is even starring in an upcoming movie. With his sophomore album The Massacre due in days, 50 Cent is primed to do it all again. The first single Candy Shop is already on top of the charts. We expect to hear more of his inner-city storytelling with violence, sex and revenge but hoped there might be more of his sensitive side. And there is a love song on his disk, but it's a song about the love affair between an addict and heroin. Regardless, if you were wise to 50 Cent and bought him for your label, this week his revenue is up 42%. And we expect it will only rise. Because 50 has just launched an all out feud with his protege The Game.

Hatfields & McCoys
This week, The Game is the top earning artist on the NMC Urban eTracks generating over $2.3 million. In fact he is earning more than his mentor 50 Cent. Like 50, The Game was a former drug dealer who had been shot several times and used music as his way to escape a life of crime. The details of the feud depend on whom you listen to but this week it escalated to gunfire. During an interview on a hip-hop radio station, 50 declared that he was kicking The Game out of his G-Unit family because of disloyalty. Allegedly The Game was heard supporting some of 50 Cent's high-profile enemies. According to police, a shooting then occurred outside the radio station, wounding one man. At this time, no arrests have been made.

Come On Down
So you know, the start of the official season is April 5th. To get a piece of $25,000 in cash and prizes, including tons of iTunes downloads, iPods and more, you'll need to register your label by paying the registration fee. You can still play the game if you don't register your label, but you won't be eligible for any prizes. What's the fun in that? Some of the sweet prizes include: straight up cash, plus, we'll hook you up with you a sweet iPod and tons of tracks to fill it. This is a shout out for you Indie League players. Currently more than half of you have the makings of a hit factory which could skyrocket you into the Open League stratosphere.

Country Quandary
Four years ago no one knew about Rascal Flatts. Now this handsome male country trio is heading back out on their second headlining tour. Their current single Bless The Broken Road is a hot country ditty. The song took the top honors in just 12 weeks, making it the fastest rising hit of their career and reaching cross-over status. This week they are exploding with an increase of 143% in revenue since last week. Since many labels seem challenged by country artists, you may want to consider them. Another smokin' country icon saw her revenue jump 84%; give it up for Reba McEntire. This country legend is the top earner this week on the Country eTrack bringing in over $2 million. But in a wicked twist of fate Reba is also is one of the most dropped artists for the week.

Quick Hits
Ryan Cabrera is up 179% in revenue this week and proves he has staying power. Plus we just heard his latest single 40 Kinds of Sadness and think it is awesome.

Usher and Alicia Keys ruled the Soul Train Awards. Both of them went home with two individual awards and shared the prize for best R&B-soul single by a group or duo. If you got them on your label don't fear the small gains this week because it ain't over.

Country singer Josh Gracin, alum from season two American Idol, is showing some serious muscle on our charts generating over $2 million this week. Also he scored his first Academy of Country Music Award nomination.


Dean Tsouvalas is the current writer of the Lycos 50 - the most popular people, places and things users are searching for online and Lycos Manager of Content. Tsouvalas is a former ABC News Television producer of Prime Time Live with Diane Sawyer, and on-air talent. You can write Dean at insider@fantasymusicleague.com. .