‘POP IDOL’ WORSHIP!

Seems the world's going Will Young crazy...

WILL YOUNG is not just breaking records in the UK – he’s doing the same in SOUTH AFRICA.

A massive 53,000 copies of the ‘Pop Idol’ winner’s first single were snapped up last week.

Young’s ‘Evergreen’ / ‘Anything Is Possible’ outstripped first week sales of Elton John’s Princess Diana tribute ‘Candle In the Wind’, according to his record label BMG.

The double A-side single was only due to be released on Monday (March 11), but a retailer’s promotional campaign saw his label push the release date forward a week to coincide with the final episode of UK ‘Pop Idol’, which ended its run on South Africa’s pay channel, M-Net, last Sunday (March 3).

“By midweek we were rush pressing another 20,000 (copies), but that wasn’t enough.” says a BMG spokesman. “Everyone in the business misread the market. We were expecting to shift 50,000, but thought it would take at least several weeks. The CD single market was virtually dead in this country until Will and ‘Pop Idol’ came along. Now there’s no reason why we can’t move 100,000.”

Expectations are that Gareth Gates’ cover of ‘Unchained Melody’, due for released in South Africa on March 25, will outsell Will’s single.

Now that retailers have cottoned on to the mania, they will be queuing up to place ads on ‘Idols’, the South African franchise of UK ‘Pop Idol’, which debuted on Sunday (March 10).