Rapper Drake drops surprise album
Sara Anwar | 2/16/2015, 5:19 a.m.
(CNN) Rapper Drake pulled a Beyoncé, surprising fans late Thursday with a 17-track album.
"If You're Reading This It's Too Late" may have been tipped off earlier in the day when the artist debuted a short film titled "Jungle," which ranges from historical footage to scenes of a young Drake singing and rapping. Soon after, he tweeted what appeared to be his album cover.
Tracks include collaborations with artists Lil Wayne, Travi$ Scott and PartyNextDoor. A handwritten note on Drake's OVO site gives shout-outs to the Toronto Raptors, Madonna and Ginuwine, among others. The rapper also took to Instagram to ask whether fans liked his mixtape.
Billboard's Keith Caulfield reports that the album could be the rapper's fourth No. 1 on the publication's 200 chart.
"While it's still a bit early to get a proper projection on what it might sell through the end of the tracking week on Sunday, Feb. 15, sources have floated figures as high as 400,000," Caulfield writes. "That would be the largest sales week for a rap album since November of 2013, when Eminem's 'The Marshall Mathers LP 2' bowed at No. 1 with 792,000 sold (according to Nielsen Music) in its first week."
Releasing unexpected music seems to be all the rage since singer Beyoncé dropped a surprise album in 2013. The self-titled album was a huge hit, selling more than a million copies in less than three weeks.