Posts by Paul Grein

  • Chart Watch: 'Happy' Peaked But It’s Still Potent

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch6 days ago

    Pharrell Williams's"Happy" is finally peaking in terms of radio airplay. In fact, it most likely peaked a week ago, when it received 225.9 million "all-format audience impressions." (That's music industry jargon for a song that is simply inescapable.) It slipped to 225.4 million such impressions this week. In the 23-year history of Billboard's Radio Songs chart, only one song has ever amassed this many or more radio impressions. That's "Blurred Lines" by Robin Thicke featuring T.I. + Pharrell, which registered 228.9 million in its peak week last August. (Given Williams' drop this week, even though it was a slight one, Thicke's record seems safe.)

    "Happy" peaked in terms of digital sales four weeks ago, when it sold 490K copies. This week, its sales fell to 284K.

    "Happy" tops the Hot 100 for the seventh week. The feel-good smash is the first song by a male solo artist (who wasn't part of a collaboration) to log seven weeks at #1 since T.I.'s"Whatever You Like" in 2008.

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  • Chart Watch: 5 Reasons 5 Seconds Of Summer Is Hot

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch6 days ago

    5 Seconds Of Summer's "She Looks So Perfect: U.S. Tour Edition" enters The Billboard 200 at #2, just behind the inexhaustible "Frozen" soundtrack. The pop/rock quartet was formed in Sydney, Australia three years ago.

    5SOS looks like a boy band, but its sound is closer to power-pop, at least on this single. All four group members play instruments. Lead singer Luke Hemmings plays guitar. The group also includes Michael Clifford (guitar), Calum Hood (bass guitar) and Ashton Irwin (drums).

    The group's four-song EP sold 143K copies in its first week, fairly close to the 176K that One Direction's first album, "Up All Night," sold in its first week in March 2012. (1D's last two albums, "Take Me Home" and "Midnight Memories," have each sold more than 500K copies in their first weeks).

    Here are five reasons that 5 Seconds Of Summer (5SOS to fans) has gotten off to a fast start.

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  • Chart Watch: Shakira Tops Gaga

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch12 days ago

    Shakira's "Empire" is the week's top new entry on the Hot 100 at #58. It edges out Lady Gaga's "G.U.Y.," which is the week's second highest new entry at #76.

    "Empire" is the second single from "Shakira," which enters The Billboard 200 at #2 this week. The lead single, "Can't Remember To Forget You" (featuring Rihanna), rebounds from #34 to #32 this week. It peaked at #15.

    "G.U.Y." is vying to become the third top 20 hit from Gaga's "ARTPOP" album. The album's first single, "Applause," reached #4. The follow-up, "Do What U Want" (featuring R. Kelly), peaked at #13.

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  • Chart Watch: Crank That, Pharrell

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch13 days ago

    Pharrell Williams's"Happy" tops the Hot 100 for the sixth week. That's the longest run at #1 for a song that an individual artist wrote, produced and performed all by himself, with no credited collaborators, since "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" by Soulja Boy Tell'em logged seven weeks at #1 in 2007. Since 1955, just one other song that meets this description has logged six or more weeks at #1. That's Alicia Keys' "Fallin'," which spent six weeks on top in 2001.

    There have been a few close calls. Gotye wrote and produced "Somebody That I Used To Know" (eight weeks on top in 2013), but employed a featured artist, Kimbra. Andre 3000 wrote, produced and performed OutKast's "Hey Ya!" (nine weeks on top in 2003-2004), but it was credited to the duo.

    "Happy" is the first song by a male solo artist (who wasn't part of a collaboration) to log six weeks on top since Bruno Mars' "Locked Out Of Heaven" in late 2012 and early 2013.

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