Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas Is You" has just become the first Christmas song to top the 2 million mark in digital sales. It has sold more digital copies than the next two best-selling Christmas hits combined. They are Trans-Siberian Orchestra's 1996 hit "Christmas Eve (Sarajevo 12/24)" (864K) and the Chipmunks' 1958 novelty smash "The Chipmunk Song" (841K, a tally which combines two different versions).
"All I Want For Christmas Is You" has been a holiday perennial since its release in 1994 on Carey's Merry Christmas album. It has also been covered by other artists. It is featured on three albums in this week's top 20: Michael Buble's Christmas, Justin Bieber's Under The Mistletoe and Glee: The Music: The Christmas Album: Volume 2.
Carey has had dozens of hits, but it's entirely possible that 50 years from now, she'll be best known for "All I Want For Christmas Is You." Brenda Lee had a dozen top 10 hits and is best known by today's pop fans for her 1958 recording of "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree." Two of the greatest stars in recording history, Bing Crosby and Nat "King" Cole, are probably most closely identified with their holiday songs, which were first released within four years of each other in the 1940s. Crosby released "White Christmas" in 1942. Cole released "The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)" in 1946 when he was still with the King Cole Trio.
If, decades from now, people know Carey primarily as the woman who recorded "All I Want For Christmas Is You," she'll be fortunate to be remembered for such a joyous and infectious song, one that perfectly captures the excitement of the holiday season.
"We Found Love" by Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris tops the Hot 100 for the seventh straight week. This ties "Umbrella" (featuring Jay-Z) and Eminem's "Love The Way You Lie," on which Rihanna was featured, as RiRi's longest-running #1 hit to date. Since 1955, only four other artists have had three or more songs remain at #1 for as many as seven weeks. Elvis Presley, fittingly, had more of these monster hits than any other artist (five). Mariah Carey is second with four. Rihanna is tied with Boyz II Men and Beyonce, with three each.
By holding at #1 for a seventh week, "We Found Love" also ties Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" as the longest-running #1 hit so far this year.
Rihanna's "S&M," which reached #1 in April, tops the 3 million mark in digital sales this week. It's the 13th song to reach that sales plateau in 2011, which sets a new record. Twelve songs topped the 3 million mark in all of 2010. Seven songs hit that level in 2009. Just two did it in 2008.
LMFAO's "Sexy And I Know It" holds at #2 for the sixth straight week. That's the longest run at #2 for a song that peaked in that spot since Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" logged seven weeks in the runner-up spot two years ago. "Sexy And I Know It" regains the #1 spot on Hot Digital Songs with sales of 149K. That's the lowest tally for a song at #1 on the digital sales chart since Beyonce's "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)" sold the same number of copies in December 2008, when it was in its third and final week at #1.
Katy Perry's "The One That Got Away" jumps from #9 to #4. It's the sixth top five single from her album Teenage Dream. Only two other albums in history have generated six top five hits. Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 spawned seven (not counting a song that made the top five on the Hot 100 Airplay chart). George Michael's Faith also yielded six. (How about Michael Jackson? Thriller and Bad each yielded five top five hits.)
The 69-cent pricing on "The One That Got Away" is having the desired effect sales. Sales jumped by 24% this week. That's the third biggest increase, on a percentage basis, of any song in the top 20 on this week's Hot Digital Songs chart. Only Toby Keith's "Red Solo Cup" and Adele's "Set Fire To The Rain" showed bigger increases (their sales jumped by 90% and 39%, respectively). At press time, "The One That Got Away" was the only song in iTunes top 75 that was priced at less than $1.29. Still, it's only fair to point out that the song is also scoring heavily in airplay. This week, it ranks #6 on both the Hot 100 Airplay chart and Hot Digital Songs.
"Ni**as In Paris" by Jay-Z/Kanye West jumps from #8 to #6. The song also holds at #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the seventh straight week. Chris Rock had a great line about the rap titans' current tour in the year-end issue of Rolling Stone. "This might be the greatest show I ever saw. It's the equivalent of the Billy Joel-Elton John tour, but if they did it in 1979, when the songs were hot!"
Shameless Plug: Who's the only artist with two songs in the top 10 for the year-to-date? If you answered Adele, you're right. Who's the only artist with three songs in the top 20? That one's a little harder. (The answer is Katy Perry.) We've just posted a Chart Watch Extra in which I take a look at the 25 best-selling songs so far this year. I also threw in a few extras. Did you know that Eminem's 2002 smash "Lose Yourself" has sold more than 1 million copies so far this year? Or that "I Just Had Sex" by the Lonely Island featuring Akon is the year's best-selling comedy song? You will after you read this Chart Watch Extra. Here's a link.
Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 songs.
1. Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris, "We Found Love." The song logs its seventh straight week at #1. This is its 12th week on the chart; its 11th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #2 (149K).
2. LMFAO, "Sexy And I Know It." The song logs its sixth straight week at #2. This is its 15th week on the chart; its 12th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #1 (149K).
3. Bruno Mars, "It Will Rain." The song holds at #3 for the third week in its 11th week on the chart. This is its fifth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #4 (129K).
4. Katy Perry, "The One That Got Away." The song jumps from #9 to #4 in its ninth week on the chart. This is its fourth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #6 (117K).
5. Flo Rida, "Good Feeling." The song holds at #5 for the second week in its 11th week on the chart. This is its sixth week in the top 10. The song tops the 1 million mark in digital sales this week. Digital sales rank: #5 (125K).
6. Jay-Z/Kanye West, "Ni**as In Paris." The song jumps from #8 to #6 in its 18th week. This is its second week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #7 (108K).
7. Adele, "Someone Like You." The former #1 song dips from #6 to #7 in its 23rd week on the chart. This is its 15th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (84K). The song ranks #10 for the year-to-date.
8. Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera, "Moves Like Jagger." The former #1 song drops from #4 to #8 in its 25th week on the chart. This is its 20th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #6 (105K). The song ranks #5 for the year-to-date.
9. David Guetta featuring Usher, "Without You." The song drops from #7 to #9 in its 15th week on the chart. This is its 11th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (82K).
10. T-Pain featuring Wiz Khalifa & Lily Allen, "5 O'Clock." The song jumps from #11 to #10 in its 11th week on the chart. This is T-Pain's 15th top 10 hit; Wiz Khalifa's fourth; Allen's first. Digital sales rank: #9 (88K).
The Glee rendition of "We Are Young" by fun. featuring Janelle Monae enters the Hot 100 at #12. It's the sixth highest-charting Glee song to date. Digital sales rank: #3 (137K). (The original version, which was released in September, bows at #53. It's set to appear on fun.'s second album, Some Nights, which is due on Feb. 21.)
Four more Glee renditions crack the Hot 100 this week: A medley of Destiny's Child's "Survivor" and Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" bows at #51, a remake of Michael Jackson's "Man In The Mirror" opens at #76, a remake of the Jackson 5's "ABC" bows at #88 and a version of Toby Keith's current hit "Red Solo Cup" lands at #92.
"Dance (A$$) by Big Sean featuring Nicki Minaj jumps from #16 to #14 in its 11th week...Toby Keith's "Red Solo Cup" leaps from #35 to #17 in its seventh week, boosted by its Glee exposure. Digital sales rank: #8 (96K). This is Keith's first top 20 hit in a Hot 100 career that dates back to 1993. His previous highest-charting singles were "Who's Your Daddy?" and "Beer For My Horses" (with Willie Nelson), both of which reached #22.
Adele's "Set Fire To The Rain" leaps from #37 to #21 in its 15th week. I think it's the best of her three big hits from 21. Will it follow "Rolling In The Deep" and "Someone Like You" to #1? Stay tuned..."Young, Wild & Free" by Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa featuring Bruno Mars, which has already cracked the top 10, rebounds from #29 to #22 in its ninth week...Selena Gomez & the Scene's "Love You Like A Love Song" jumps from #34 to #31 in its 25th week. Will it finally crack the top 30 next week aftersix full months on the chart? Stay tuned.
Zac Brown Band's "Keep Me In Mind" jumps from #41 to #35 in its 11th week. The song jumps to #1 on Hot Country Songs. It's the band's eighth #1 country hit...The catchy "International Love" by Pitbull featuring Chris Brown jumps from #56 to #46 in its sixth week...In the week that "5 O'Clock" finally hits the top 10, the third single from T-Pain's Revolver enters the Hot 100. "Bang Bang Pow Pow" (featuring Lil Wayne) opens at #48...Tyga's "Rack City" jumps from #73 to #57 in its third week...Taylor Swift's "Ours," which has already climbed as high as #13, rebounds from #83 to #65 in its fifth week.
Grouplove's "Tongue Tied" jumps from #78 to #69 in its second week..."Can't Get Enough" by J. Cole featuring Trey Songz jumps from #82 to #71 in its second week...Scotty McCreery's "The Trouble With Girls" leaps from #95 to #75 (a new peak) in its fifth week...Avril Lavigne's "Wish You Were Here," the third single from her fourth album, Goodby Lullabye, re-enters at #84.
Kelly Clarkson's "I'll Be Home For Christmas" bows at #93. The song is from Clarkson's iTunes session. Bing Crosby introduced the song in 1943, just one year after he gave us "White Christmas." Both songs were released during World War II, which gave the yearning expressed in the lyrics added poignancy. Josh Groban put the song back on the chart in 2006, a year before he featured it on his smash album Noel.
"Fergalicious, the 2007 smash by Fergie featuring will.i.am, tops 3 million in digital sales this week. It's Fergie's second solo hit to reach this level, following "Big Girls Don't Cry" (which is up to 3,745,000). "Fergalicious" is the second hit on which will.i.am is featured to reach this level, following Usher's "OMG," which is up to 4,363,000. Fergie and will.i.am have also had four 3-million sellers together in the Black Eyed Peas.
Michael Buble's 2009 hit "Haven't Met You Yet" tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week. That's very good for a song so squarely in the adult contemporary mold…Drake's "Headlines" tops the 1 million mark this week.
Rock Hall: Two of this year's inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame notched #1 hits on the Hot 100: Donovan (with 1966's "Sunshine Superman") and Gun N' Roses (with 1988's "Sweet Child O' Mine"). Red Hot Chili Peppers climbed as high as #2 with 1992's "Under The Bridge." Beastie Boys hit #7 with 1987's "(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)." Small Faces and the subsequent Faces, which are being inducted as a joint entry, each had a top 20 hit: "Itchycoo Park" and "Stay With Me," respectively. Laura Nyro had only one Hot 100 hit as an artist (a cover of the Goffin/King classic "Up On The Roof," which reached #92 in 1970), though she wrote top 10 hits for such artists as the 5th Dimension, Three Dog Night, Blood, Sweat & Tears and Barbra Streisand. Freddy King, who is being inducted as an early influence, reached #29 in 1961 with "Hide Away."
R.I.P.: Dobie Gray's "Drift Away" is one of the best songs about the way music offers an escape from our daily cares. The graceful ballad reached the top five in May 1973. Thirty years later, Gray was featured on Uncle Kracker's remake of the song, which also cracked the top 10. Gray died last week. He was 71.