It's not even Halloween yet, but Justin Bieber's "Mistletoe" enters the Hot 100 at #11. The song is from Bieber's holiday album Under The Mistletoe, which is due Nov. 1. "Mistletoe" is already the sixth highest-charting Christmas song on Billboard's pop chart since 1955. All of the Christmas songs that have climbed higher are from the 1950s except New Kids on the Block's "This One's For The Children," which hit #7 in 1989. New Kids, of course, were the reigning teen heartthrobs of their day.
The four other Christmas songs to hit #11 or higher since 1955 are "The Chipmunk Song" by David Seville & the Chipmunks (#1 for four weeks in 1958), "Nuttin' For Christmas" by Art Mooney with Barry Gordon (#6 in 1955), Bobby Helms' classic "Jingle Bell Rock" (#6 in 1957) and Bing Crosby's legendary "White Christmas" (which climbed as high #7 in 1955, after logging 14 weeks at #1 in the 1940s.)
(Chart rules barred Christmas songs from the Hot 100 at various points, which kept such holiday perennials as Charles Brown's "Merry Christmas Baby," Carpenters' "Merry Christmas Darling," the Jackson 5's "Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town" and Elmo & Patsy's "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer" from getting their due.)
"Mistletoe" sold 164K copies in its first week, which enabled it to enter Hot Digital Songs at #5. It has a good chance of becoming only the second holiday song to sell 1 million digital copies. The only holiday song to top the million mark in digital sales to date is Mariah Carey's 1994 perennial "All I Want For Christmas Is You," which has sold 1,918,000 copies.
"Mistletoe" is a cinch to break two other digital records. The record for the best-selling holiday song by a teen-aged artist is currently held by Brenda Lee's classic "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree," which has sold 594K digital copies. Lee was 14 in 1958 when she released the song; 16 in 1960 when it first made the Hot 100. The record for the best-selling holiday song by a male teen artist is currently held by Chris Brown's "This Christmas," which has sold 260K digital copies. Brown was 18 in 2007 when his version of the Donny Hathaway staple made the chart.
Adele's "Someone Like You" holds at #1 for the fifth straight week. "Rolling In The Deep" was #1 for seven weeks earlier this year. Adele is the first female solo artist to log five weeks at #1 in a calendar year with two strictly solo recordings. Beyonce, Monica and Mariah Carey also did it (in 2003, 1998 and 1995, respectively), if you include collabos.
"We Found Love" by Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris leaps from #6 to #2 in its fifth week on the Hot 100. In addition, the song holds at #1 in the U.K. for the third straight week. It's Rihanna's longest-running #1 in the U.K. since "Umbrella" (featuring Jay-Z) topped the chart there for 10 weeks in 2007.
"Moves Like Jagger" by Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera dips from #2 to #3 in its 18th week. The song, which makes flattering reference to Mick Jagger, is the biggest of several songs this year that toast pop icons. "Marvin And Chardonnay" by Big Sean featuring Kanye West & Roscoe Dash, a tip-of-the-hat to Marvin Gaye, was a #1 R&B hit. "Old Alabama" by Brad Paisley featuring Alabama, which salutes the top country group of the 1980s, was a #1 country hit. Duck Soup's "Barbra Streisand," a loopy nod to the pop diva, was a #1 dance hit. "Otis" by Jay-Z/Kanye West, which samples and salutes Otis Redding's "Try A Little Tenderness," reached #2 on both the rap and R&B charts.
LMFAO's "Sexy And I Know It" holds at #4 for the third straight week. The song tops the 1 million mark in digital sales this week. "I've got passion in my pants" is the song's most memorable line. It's not easy to write a lyric that unforgettably dumb. If it was, we'd all be millionaires.
"Make Me Proud" by Drake featuring Nicki Minaj vaults from #97 to #9 in its second week. Billboard's Gary Trust notes that that constitutes the fourth-greatest one-week leap in Hot 100 history. It trails Kelly Clarkson's "My Life Would Suck Without You" (#97 to #1 in February 2009), Britney Spears' "Womanizer" (#96 to #1 in October 2008) and "Beautiful Liar" by Beyonce & Shakira (#94 to #3 in April 2007). (Oddly, after a jump of that magnitude, "Beautiful Liar" didn't climb any higher.)
"Make Me Proud" is the second single from Drake's second full-length album, Take Care, which is due Nov. 15. It has already climbed higher than the first single from the album, "Headlines," which reached #13.
Katy Perry this week becomes the first artist in digital history to sell 5 million or more copies of three different hits. She achieves the feat as "Firework" tops the 5 million mark. The exhilarating smash follows "Hot N Cold" (which is up to 5,044,000) and "California Gurls," featuring Snoop Dogg, which is up to 5,033,000). (All three smashes have topped the 5 million mark in just the past two months.)
Three artists, the Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga and Flo Rida, have each had two 5-million digital sellers. (Make that four artists if you count Ke$ha, who was featured on Flo Rida's "Right Round." Billboard removed Ke$ha's credit when the smash was midway through its six-week run at #1.)
"Firework" was named Video of the Year at MTV's Video Music Awards. It's likely to be in the running for Record and Song of the Year when the Grammy nominations are announced on Nov. 30. You already know that if you read my "And The Winner Is" preview of the Grammy nominations in the "Big Four" categories. If you missed it, here's a link.
Pop Quiz: It's been nearly a year since the Beatles' catalog of classic songs made their digital debut (on Nov. 16, 2010). What Beatles song has sold the most digital copies? What's second? Answers below.
Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 songs.
10. LMFAO featuring Lauren Bennett & GoonRock, "Party Rock Anthem." The former #1 song dips from #9 to #10 in its 31st week on the chart. This is its 23rd week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #13 (83K).
"Young, Wild & Free" by Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa featuring Bruno Mars tumbles from #10 to #30 in its second week on the chart. Digital sales rank: #11 (85K).
Coldplay's "Paradise" vaults from #38 to #15 in its sixth week. It's the second single from Coldplay's fifth studio album Mylo Xyloto. The album will enter The Billboard 200 at #1 next week, with first-week sales in the 440K range. The first song from the album, "Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall," reached #14 on the Hot 100. "Paradise" is vying to become Coldplay's third top 10 hit. Digital sales rank: #10 (109K).
Kelly Clarkson's "Mr. Know It All" jumps from #24 to #19 in its seventh week. It's a good bet to become her ninth top 10 hit..."5 O'Clock" by T-Pain featuring Wiz Khalifa & Lily Allen jumps from #25 to #20 in its fourth week..."N**gas In Paris" by Jay-Z/Kanye West jumps from #27 to #21 in its 11th week.
"She Will" by Lil Wayne featuring Drake drops from #19 to #23 in its 10th week. The song holds at #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the fourth week...Blake Shelton's "God Gave Me You"drops from #22 to #25 in its 15th week. The song holds at #1 on Hot Country Songs for the second week.
"Fly" by Nicki Minaj featuring Rihanna jumps from #34 to #28 in its ninth week...Flo Rida's "Good Feeling" jumps from #42 to #31 in its fourth week...Bruno Mars' "It Will Rain" jumps from #47 to #33 in its fourth week...Luke Bryan's "I Don't Want This Night To End" jumps from #54 to #44 in its fourth week.
Katy Perry's "The One That Got Away" vaults from #94 to #55 in its second week. It's Perry's bid for a record-setting sixth #1 single from Teenage Dream. Wanna know what happened to the sixth single from Michael Jackson's Bad (the only other album to spawn five #1 hits?) The song, "Another Part Of Me," stalled at #11. (Knowing how obsessive he was about his career achievements, I'm sure he was deeply disappointed. But he returned to the top 10 with "Smooth Criminal," a seventh single from the album.)
Britney Spears' "Criminal" leaps from #92 to #66 in its second week. The low-key ballad is a big departure from the vibrant dance pop sound of the first three hits from Femme Fatale...Christina Perri's "A Thousand Years" debuts at #74. The song is from the upcoming The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn soundtrack...Beyonce's "Party" (featuring Andre 3000) jumps from #87 to #75 in its third week. It leapfrogs over B's other building hit, "Countdown," which jumps from #85 to #77 in its second week.
"You The Boss" by Rick Ross featuring Nicki Minaj debuts at #84. It's the second single from Ross' fifth studio album, God Forgives, I Don't. (Bad attitude, good title.) The album is due Dec. 13. Ross was featured on DJ Khaled's "I'm On One," which went top 10 earlier this year.
Chris Young's "You" bows at #85. The song is approaching the top 20 on Hot Country Songs. Young's last four hits have reached #1...Jessie J's "Domino" jumps from #96 to #87 in its second week...Ronnie Dunn's "Cost Of Livin'" bows at #93. It's a top 20 country hit..."Promise" by Romeo Santos featuring Usher bows at #94. Santos is the former lead singer of the Latin group Aventura...Adele's "Set Fire To The Rain" re-enters the chart at #96. The song has climbed as high as #72.
"Focused" by Wale featuring Kid Cudi debuts at #97. This is the second single from Wale's second studio album, Ambition, which is due Nov. 1...Darius Rucker's "I Got Nothin'" re-enters at #100. It's a top 20 country hit.
Nicki Minaj's "Super Bass" this week becomes the first song by a female hip hop artist to top the 3 million mark in digital sales. Minaj's "Moment 4 Life" (featuring Drake) is next in line, with sales of 1,442,000 copies. Missy Elliott's 2005 hit "Lose Control" (featuring Ciara and Fat Man Scoop) is in third place, with sales of 1,336,000. Note: Elliott's 2002 smash "Work It" was released before the advent of digital sales. Otherwise, it would probably lead in this category.
Quiz Answer: The Beatles' song that has sold the most digital copies is "Let It Be," which has sold 432K copies. The songwriting credit is John Lennon/Paul McCartney, but it's widely known that McCartney wrote it. In second place: George Harrison's "Here Comes The Sun," which has sold 400K copies. "Let It Be" topped the Hot 100 in April 1970, but "Here Comes The Sun" was never released as a single. The only single from Abbey Road was the double-sided smash "Come Together"/ "Something."
Justin Bieber photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images