Posts by Paul Grein

  • Chart Watch: “Frozen” Gets Hotter

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch14 hrs ago

    You'd think the "Frozen" soundtrack would be slowing down by now, but it just keeps, well, snowballing. The album sold 259K copies this week, which constitutes its biggest sales week to date. This is the biggest one-week tally for a soundtrack since "Michael Jackson's This Is It" sold 373K copies in its first week in November 2009.

    "Frozen" logs its 11th week at #1 on The Billboard 200, which is a record only two albums have equaled in this century. Adele's "21" is out front since January 2000 with 24 weeks on top. Taylor Swift's "Fearless" had 11 weeks on top in 2008-2009.

    Three factors spurred this week's increase. "Frozen" is now stocked in Starbucks locations. The album made a nifty Easter gift. And Idina Menzel's "Let It Go" has become a pop smash. The song is due to spend its fifth week in the top five on the Hot 100 this week.

    "Frozen" has sold 2,335,000 copies, which makes it the best-selling soundtrack since "Twilight." That album has sold 2,807,000 copies since its release in October 2008.

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  • 20 All-Time Karaoke Classics

    Paul Grein at Yahoo Music2 days ago

    You can't carry a tune? Me neither. But it doesn't really matter. This is National Karaoke Week, when even tone-deaf singers have an excuse to belt out their favorite song. Karaoke is the great equalizer for pop tunes. Cornball songs like "Afternoon Delight" can work as well as certified classics like "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'." They may even work better, because of the crowd-pleasing kitsch factor. There's no definitive metric to rank the most popular karaoke songs ever, but here are 20 to get the party started. These songs are perennials in karaoke bars, Xbox sing-alongs, and iPhone apps. Many have even been featured in memorable karaoke scenes in movies and TV. 20. "ABC." People may select this bubblegum classic because they figure singing it will be "simple as Do-Re-Mi, ABC, 1-2-3." Turns it out it's not that easy to match Michael Jackson's effortless charm (at age 11!). The Jackson 5's original version hit No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 in April 1970.

    19. "Love Shack." The original version of this party classic by The B-52's reached No. 3 in November 1989.

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  • Chart Watch: ‘Happy’ Tops 4M

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch7 days ago

    Pharrell Williams's "Happy" tops the 4 million mark in digital sales this week. It's Williams' second song to reach that plateau in a little more than eight months. Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" (on which Williams was featured, along with T.I.) hit 4M in August. (It currently stands at 6,995,000). As you have probably surmised, "Happy" has already outsold Daft Punk's "Get Lucky," on which Williams was also featured. That Grammy-winning smash has sold 3,475,000 copies.

    "Happy" is the first song to sell 4M digital copies in 2014. It's off to a very fast start, but "Thrift Shop" by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz got off to an even faster start last year. It topped the 4M mark in 2013 sales the week ending March 31. (The current week is Nielsen SoundScan's week ending April 13.)

    "Happy" tops the Hot 100 for the eighth week. The feel-good smash is the first song by a male solo artist (who wasn't part of a collaboration) to log eight or more weeks at #1 since Mario's"Let Me Love You" spent nine weeks on top in 2005.

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  • Chart Watch: 10 Fun Facts About 'Frozen'

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch7 days ago

    The "Frozen" soundtrack logs its 10th week at #1 on The Billboard 200, which ties "The Lion King" for the longest run at #1 ever for a soundtrack from an animated movie. Both albums spawned Oscar-winning ballads: "Let It Go" and "Can You Feel The Love Tonight," respectively.

    And "Frozen" will probably stay on top for at least three more weeks. (Three high-profile albums are due for release on May 6 that are vying for #1: "Now 50," a still-untitled Mariah Carey album and Hunter Hayes's"Storyline.")

    The soundtrack's staying power is remarkable. Even after 20 weeks in release, "Frozen" sold more copies this week (133K) than the week's next five best-selling albums combined (130K).

    To commemorate the album's on-going dominance, here's an avalanche of 10 fun facts about "Frozen."

    1."Frozen" tops the 2 million mark in U.S. sales this week. It's the first soundtrack from a theatrically-released movie to reach the 2 million sales plateau since Miley Cyrus's "Hannah Montana: The Movie," which has sold 2,085,000 copies since its release in 2009.

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

    Paul Grein at Chart Watch14 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 Watch14 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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