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Week Ending Aug. 21, 2011: Rolling To A Record

Chart Watch

It's only August, but Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" has already sold more digital copies than any other song has in any calendar year. Adele's song has sold 4,825,000 copies since the beginning of the year. The previous champ, the Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow," sold 4,762,000 digital copies in 2009.

While Adele has set a new digital-era record for most sales in a calendar year, Elton John's "Candle In The Wind 1997" continues to hold the overall Nielsen SoundScan record for most sales in a calendar year. His ballad, which he unveiled at Princess Diana's funeral service on Sept. 6, 1997, sold 8,111,000 physical copies in the U.S. that year.

"Candle In The Wind 1997" brought Elton a Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, but it wasn't eligible for Song of the Year because it was a rewrite of a song he first released in 1973. "Rolling In The Deep" will take everything in sight when the Grammys are presented in February.

Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)" tops the Hot 100 for the second straight week. All five of Perry's #1 singles from Teenage Dream have logged two or more weeks on top. By contrast, only two of Michael Jackson's five #1 singles from Bad logged two weeks on top: "Bad" and "Man In The Mirror."

I have one last Perry/Jackson nugget. Perry co-wrote all five of her #1 singles from Teenage Dream. Jackson wrote four of his five #1 hits from Bad, but he didn't have a hand in the writing of "Man In The Mirror" (which was written by Glen Ballard and Siedah Garrett). I think "Man In The Mirror" is the best song on the album and one of the best recordings of Jackson's career. I give him credit for putting his ego aside and recognizing a great song, no matter who wrote it.

Lil Wayne's Tha Carter IV will enter the chart at #1 two weeks from today. A bold prediction? Not at all. Three songs from the album have already made the top 10 on the Hot 100. "6 Foot 7 Foot" (featuring Cory Gunz) reached #9 in January. "How To Love" hit #5 three weeks ago. And "She Will" (featuring Drake) debuts at #3 this week. That's the highest debut since Lady Gaga's "The Edge Of Glory" bowed at #3 in May. It's the highest debut for a rap/sung collabo since "Love The Way You Lie" by Eminem featuring Rihanna bowed at #2 in June 2010.

"She Will" is the 16th top 10 hit for Lil Wayne; the seventh for Drake. Only three other rappers have amassed as many top 10 hits as Lil Wayne. Jay-Z and Ludacris have each had 17. Puff Daddy has had 16. "She Will" enters Hot Digital Songs at #1, with first-week sales of 255K.

Shameless Plug: MTV's Video Music Awards will air on Sunday night. Katy Perry's "Firework" and Adele's "Rolling In The Deep" seem to be the front-runners in the race for the top award, Video of the Year. Tomorrow, I'll post a piece in the And The Winner Is file in which I scroll back through the 27 videos that have been voted Video of the Year, from the Cars' "You Might Think" to Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance." I'll include a Pop Quiz in which you can test your knowledge of these videos. Check it out tomorrow.

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

1. Katy Perry, "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)." The song holds at #1 for the second week. This is its 13th week on the chart; its 10th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #4 (154K).

2. LMFAO featuring Lauren Bennett & GoonRock, "Party Rock Anthem." The song holds at #2 for the second week following six weeks at #1. This is its 22nd week on the chart; its 14th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #5 (148K).

3. Lil Wayne featuring Drake, "She Will." The song debuts at #3. It's the 16th top 10 hit for Lil Wayne; the seventh for Drake. Digital sales rank: #1 (255K).

4. Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera, "Moves Like Jagger." The song dips from #3 to #4 in its ninth week on the chart. This is its fourth week in the top 10. The song tops the 1 million mark in sales this week. Digital sales rank: #2 (206K).

5. Nicki Minaj, "Super Bass." The song dips from #4 to #5 in its 17th week on the chart. This is its 11th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (107K).

6. Bad Meets Evil featuring Bruno Mars, "Lighters." The song dips from #5 to #6 in its 10th week on the chart. This is its fourth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #6 (139K).

7. Foster The People, "Pumped Up Kicks." The song jumps from #8 to #7 in its 17th week on the chart. This is its second week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #3 (172K).

8. Lil Wayne, "How To Love." The song drops from #6 to #8 in its 13th week on the chart. This is its ninth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #8 (113K).

9. OneRepublic, "Good Life," The song jumps from #10 to #9 in its 21st week on the chart. This is its sixth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #9 (113K).

10. Britney Spears, "I Wanna Go." The song dips from #9 to #10 in its 11th week on the chart. This is its fourth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #12 (90K).

"Give Me Everything" by Pitbull featuring Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer drops from #7 to #11, ending a 15-week run in the top 10.

In addition, "Give Me Everything" tops the 3 million mark this week. It's Pitbull's first 3 million-seller as a lead artist, following two as a featured artist: Enrique Iglesias' "I Like It" and Usher's "DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love." "Give Me Everything" is also the first 3 million-seller for guest artist Ne-Yo, whose previous best-seller was his 2008 hit "Closer" (1,957,000).

"Give Me Everything" is the #6 best-seller so far this year. Pitbull is the only artist with two songs in the top 10 for the year-to-date. J.Lo's "On The Floor," on which he is featured, is #7. (Katy Perry and Bruno Mars each have two songs in the top 15 for the year-to-date. Close, but no cigar.)

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The Band Perry's "If I Die Young" jumps from #15 to #14 (which ties its highest position to date) in its 39th week on the chart. Now, that's what you call a sleeper hit..."Stereo Hearts" by Gym Class Heroes featuring Adam Levine jumps from #19 to #15 in its 10th week. This is vying to become the second top 10 hit for Gym Class Heroes; the fifth for Levine (counting four hits with Maroon 5). Digital sales rank: #7 (113K).

Rihanna appears to be headed for another top 10 hit. "Cheers (Drink To That) jumps from #25 to #17 in its fourth week..."I'm On One," a former top 10 hit by DJ Khaled featuring Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne, drops from #16 to #18. It holds at #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the seventh week.

Adele's "Someone Like You" jumps from #51 to #34 in its seventh week...Lady Gaga's "You And I" vaults from #96 to #35 in its third week. It is vying to become Gaga's 11th top 10 hit, and her first outright ballad to make the top 10...Dierks Bentley's "Am I The Only One" drops from #42 to #46, three weeks after peaking at #39. It jumps to #1 on Hot Country Songs. It's Bentley's ninth #1 on that chart.

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Lady Antebellum's "We Owned The Night" debuts at #47. This is vying to become the trio's third top 10 hit. "Need You Now" hit #2. "Just A Kiss" reached #7. "We Owned The Night" inspired the title of the trio's upcoming album, Own The Night...Dev's "In The Dark" jumps from #70 to #56 in its third week. The Cataracs, which whom Dev teamed on Far*East Movement's #1 smash "Like A G6," produced the hit...Mac Miller's "Frick Park Market" bows at #60. Miller was previously best-known for "Donald Trump," which peaked at #79.

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Gavin DeGraw's "Not Over You," from his upcoming album Sweeter, re-enters at #99. This is much better news than the last time DeGraw made headlines: for being attacked by three men, and moments later, hit by a taxi, while walking home from a bar in New York City on Aug. 8. (Now, that's a bad day.) DeGraw is on tour with Train and Maroon 5.

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Ke$ha's "TiK ToK" tops the 6 million mark in sales this week. The song spent the first nine weeks of 2010 at #1. It's only the sixth song to reach the 6 million mark in digital sales. Lady Gaga is the only other female solo artist to achieve the feat.

"Dead And Gone" by T.I. featuring Justin Timberlake tops the 3 million mark in sales this week. The song logged five weeks at #2 in February and March 2009. This is the third hit from T.I.'s Paper Trail album to top the 3 million mark in digital sales, following "Whatever You Like" and "Live Your Life" (featuring Rihanna). It's Timberlake's second 3 million-seller, following his own "SexyBack" (featuring Timbaland).

Beyonce's "Irreplaceable" tops the 3 million mark in sales this week. The song spent 10 weeks at #1 from December 2006 to February 2007. It received a Grammy nomination as Record of the Year for 2007. It's B's second best-selling hit, following "Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)."

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The Zac Brown Band this week becomes the first country group in digital history to amass 5 million-selling songs. The band achieves the feat with "Knee Deep" (featuring Jimmy Buffett). The song follows "Chicken Fried," "Toes," "Whatever It Is" and "Colder Weather." Two other country groups, Rascal Flatts and Lady Antebellum, have each piled up four million-sellers.

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Darius Rucker made country music history last week. Rucker's 2009 hit "Alright" became the first country song by an African American artist to sell 1 million digital copies. Only one country song by an African American artist ever sold 1 million physical copies. That was Charley Pride's 1971 hit "Kiss An Angel Good Mornin'," which was RIAA-certified for shipments of 1 million copies on March 8, 1972. With Rucker's career going so well, I don't think it's going to take another 39 years before this happens again. And maybe other black artists will follow the lead of Pride and Rucker, so that one day this won't be as much of a phenomenon.

R.I.P. Two top-tier songwriters died on Monday. Jerry Leiber, who with Mike Stoller, wrote dozens of hits for such artists as Elvis Presley, the Coasters and Peggy Lee, and Nicholas Ashford, who with his wife Valerie Simpson wrote many hits for such artists as Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell and, well, Ashford & Simpson.

Both Leiber and Ashford are in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Leiber is also in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and was the recipient of a Grammy Trustees Award.  Ashford didn't live to see these other honors, which is a shame.

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