Chart Watch

Week Ending April 17, 2011. Songs: Youth Will Be Served

Chart Watch

Rihanna's "S&M" moves up to #1 on the Hot 100 after three weeks at #2. This is Rihanna's 10th #1 hit, which is remarkable when you consider that she is just 23. Only three other artists in chart history have amassed 10 #1 hits before their 24th birthdays.

All three members of the Supremes (Diana Ross, Mary Wilson and Florence Ballard) were 23 when they landed their 10th #1 hit, "The Happening," in May 1967.

Paul McCartney was 23 and George Harrison was just 22 when the Beatles landed their 10th #1 hit, "Yesterday," in October 1965. (Ringo Starr and John Lennon were both 25. In fact, Lennon turned 25 on the day the song hit #1: Oct. 9.)

Elvis Presley was 23 when he landed his 10th #1 hit, "Hard Headed Woman," in July 1958.

Only eight other artists have amassed 10 or more #1 hits since July 1940, when Billboard introduced its first  national top 10 popular songs chart. For the sake of comparison, here's how old these artists were at the time they landed their 10th #1 hits, together with the titles of those hits and the dates they reached #1.

Michael Jackson was 25 when "Say Say Say" (a collabo with Paul McCartney) hit #1 in December 1983. Mariah Carey was 25 when "One Sweet Day" (a collabo with Boyz II Men) hit #1 in December 1995. George Michael was 28 when "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me" (a collabo with Elton John) hit #1 in February 1992. Whitney Houston was 29 when "I Will Always Love You" hit #1 in November 1992. Madonna was 33 when "This Used To Be My Playground" hit #1 in August 1992. Janet Jackson was 34 when "All For You" hit #1 in April 2001. Perry Como was 41 when "No Other Love" hit #1 in August 1953. Bing Crosby was 42 when "It's Been A Long Long Time" (with Les Paul and his Trio) hit #1 in December 1945.

The Fine Print: I'm counting the Jackson 5 and Wham! hits toward the tallies for Michael Jackson and George Michael, respectively. I'm counting Elvis Presley's double-sided smash "Don't Be Cruel"/"Hound Dog" as one #1 hit, not two. Finally, Bing Crosby and Glenn Miller had many smash hits prior to July 1940, but they're not official #1's.

The release of a new (cleverly-titled) "Rih-mix" of "S&M" (featuring Britney Spears) gave that song the boost it needed to make it to #1. The song sold 293K copies this week, more than twice as many as it did last week. This is easily the song's fattest sales week, which enables it to finally move up to #1 on Hot Digital Songs.

"S&M" tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week, as does the song it displaces from the #1 spot, "E.T." by Katy Perry featuring Kanye West. (A third hit, Christina Perri's "Jar Of Hearts," also tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week. But unlike these two other songs, "Jar Of Hearts" never got close to the #1 spot. It peaked at #17 on the Hot 100.)

Lady Gaga's "Judas" debuts at #10. This represents a drop-off from Gaga's last hit, "Born This Way," which debuted at #1 and stayed there for six straight weeks. This is, nonetheless, Gaga's ninth top 10 hit on the Hot 100, which means she has already had as many top 10 hits as such major artists as Bobby Brown, Fleetwood Mac, Heart, Alicia Keys and Taylor Swift.

If "Alejandro" was Gaga's "La Isla Bonita" and "Born This Way" was her "Express Yourself," "Judas" is her "Like A Prayer." I think she wore out her copy of The Immaculate Collection.

Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" jumps from #10 to #6. You may remember that Adele's breakthrough hit, "Chasing Pavements," won a Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, even though it peaked at a so-so #21. Given this song's far greater success (and the success of her album, which will probably return to #1 next week), Adele is likely to be the front-runner at next year's Grammys.

Six of this week's top 10 hits are by female solo artists or female-led collabos. A seventh, the Black Eyed Peas' hit, features a very prominent female. This kind of female domination is no longer unusual, but it is noteworthy.

Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 songs.


1. Rihanna, "S&M." The song jumps to #1 in its 14th week on the chart. This is its 10th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #1 (293K).

2. Katy Perry featuring Kanye West, "E.T." The former #1 song dips to #2 after three weeks on top.  This is its 10th week on the chart; its eighth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #2 (284K).

3. The Black Eyed Peas, "Just Can't Get Enough." The song holds at #3 for the third week in its ninth week on the chart. The Peas' 2005 hits "Don't Phunk With My Heart" and "My Humps" also had long runs at #3.  This is the fifth week in the top 10 for "Just Can't Get Enough." Digital sales rank: #3 (172K).

4. Jeremih featuring 50 Cent, "Down On Me." The song jumps from #6 to #4 in its 23rd week on the chart. This ties 2009's "Birthday Sex" as Jeremih's highest-charting hit to date. This is the fifth week in the top 10 for "Down On Me." Digital sales rank: #6 (131K).

5. Cee Lo Green's "F**k You (Forget You)." The song dips from #4 to #5 its 34th week on the chart. This is its 11th week in the top 10. It's still the #1 selling song of 2011. Digital sales rank: #11 (110K).

6. Adele, "Rolling In The Deep." The song vaults from #10 to #6 in its 15th week on the chart. This is its third week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #5 (150K).

7. Chris Brown featuring Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes, "Look At Me Now." The song holds at #7 for the second week in its 11th week on the chart. This is its fifth week in the top 10. The song has been #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the past four weeks. Digital sales rank: #8 (129K).

8. Jennifer Lopez featuring Pitbull, "On The Floor." The song jumps from #9 to #8 in its eighth week on the chart. This is its seventh week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #7 (130K).

9. Britney Spears, "Till The World Ends." The song dips from #8 to #9 its seventh week on the chart. This is its third week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (120K).

10. Lady Gaga, "Judas." This new entry is Gaga's ninth top 10 hit. Digital sales rank: #4 (162K).


Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" drops from #5 to #13, ending a nine-week run in the top five.

Bruno Mars' "The Lazy Song" jumps from #20 to #11 in its eighth week. It's vying to become Mars' fifth top 10 hit. It's already in the top 10 on Hot Digital Songs, where it jumps from #16 to #9 (124K). "The Lazy Song" is this generation's equivalent of Spanky & Our Gang's "Lazy Day," a top 15 hit from December 1967. I guess the yearning to be lazy is timeless.

"Price Tag" by Jessie J featuring B.o.B vaults from #40 to #24 in its 11th week. Jessie J's debut album, Who You Are, enters The Billboard 200 at #11. "Price Tag" was #1 in the U.K. for two weeks in February.... "Don't You Wanna Stay" by Jason Aldean featuring Kelly Clarkson jumps from #42 to #31 (its highest ranking to date) in the wake of the pair's performance of the song on American Idol.

"Old Alabama" by Brad Paisley featuring Alabama vaults from #95 to #38 in its second week. It may become Paisley's highest-charting hit on the Hot 100. That title is currently shared by two songs that peaked at #28:  "Alcohol" and "Then." Paisley and Alabama are both country music royalty. Paisley is the reigning Entertainer of the Year at the Country Music Assn. awards. Alabama won that award in 1982, 1983 and 1984. They were the first three-time winners of that award in CMA history.

Darius Rucker's "This" dips from #51 to #52, but it moves up to #1 on Hot Country Songs. It's Rucker's fifth #1 country hit. 

Lil Wayne is featured on two songs that enter this week's Hot 100: Kelly Rowland's "Motivation," which opens at #55, and The Game's "Red Nation," which bows at #62. The rapper is also featured on two other hits that were already listed on the chart: Chris Brown's "Look At Me Now," which holds at #7, and Mike Posner's "Bow Chicka Wow Wow," which jumps to #40. In addition, he is the lead artist on two current Hot 100 hits: "6 Foot 7 Foot," which dips to #33, and "John," which drops to #65.

"Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO featuring Lauren Bennett & GoonRock jumps from #66 to #56 in its fourth week. The song also moves up to #1 in the U.K. this week. It's LMFAO's second U.K. #1, following David Guetta's 2010 hit "Gettin' Over You," on which it was featured.

Foo Fighters' "Rope" jumps from #78 to #68, its highest ranking to date. The band's Wasting Light album is #1 this week. You already know that if you read Chart Watch: Albums. If you missed it, here's a link.

"My Last" by Big Sean featuring Chris Brown jumps from #84 to #72 in its fourth week. In addition, Brown debuts at #90 with his own hit, "She Ain't You."

Song Scorecard: Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" tops the 5 million mark in digital sales this week. It's the ninth hit to reach that level. It's the first country song to top 5 million. It's also the first Grammy-winner for Record and/or Song of the Year to reach that sales level. The eight other hits that have reached the 5 million mark in digital sales include one that was nominated for both Record and Song of the Year (Lady Gaga's "Poker Face'), one that was nominated for just Record of the Year (the Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling") and one that was nominated for just Song of the Year (Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours").

Bruno Mars' "Grenade" and Cee Lo Green's "F**k You (Forget You)" each top the 4 million mark in digital sales this week. It's Mars' second 4-million-seller, following "Just The Way You Are." "Grenade" sold 4 million copies in 29 weeks, six weeks faster than "Just The Way You Are." "F**k You" is Green's first 4-million-seller. It is still in the top five on the Hot 100, which suggests that it may continue on to 5 or even 6 million.

"Just The Way You Are" and "Grenade" were back-to-back hits. It's one of only four instances of back-to-back 4 million-sellers in the digital era. The others are Katy Perry's "I Kissed A Girl" and "Hot N Cold"; Lady Gaga's "Just Dance" (featuring Colby O'Donis) and "Poker Face";  the Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow" and "I Gotta Feeling."

Fun Couple: Billboard's Gary Trust came up with a great item: For two weeks running, while Katy Perry headed the Hot 100 with "E.T.," her husband, Russell Brand, played a key role in the #1 movie at the box-office, Hop. (He voiced the character E.B.) Remarkably, this wasn't the first time the couple pulled off this double feat. In July 2010 (a few months prior to their wedding), Perry was amid a six-week run at #1 with "California Gurls," while Brand was a key player in the #1 movie, Despicable Me. (In that one, he voiced the character Dr. Nefario.)


Adele photo: Dan MacMedan/Getty Images; Russell Brand/Katy Perry photo: Jon Furniss/WireImage

View Comments