Chart Watch (NEW)

Week Ending March 11, 2012. Songs: Either Way, It’s #1

Chart Watch

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Billboard revamped its formula for the Hot 100 this week, but the same song is #1 this week as last week: "We Are Young" by fun. featuring Janelle Monae. The fact that this smash came out on top using two different formulas is testament to how this is truly the song of the moment.

On-demand streaming data is now factored into the Hot 100, joining sales information, as tracked by Nielsen SoundScan, and radio airplay and other streaming services, as tracked by Nielsen BDS. Billboard's Gary Trust notes that the new formula "slightly lessens the influence of sales," though that continues to be the most important component in the mix. Radio is the next most important component, followed by streaming.

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The magazine also introduced a separate "On-Demand Songs" chart. "We Are Young" is also #1 on that chart, followed by "Somebody That I Used To Know" by Gotye featuring Kimbra, Tyga's "Rack City," "Ni**as In Paris" by Jay-Z/Kanye West and "Take Care" by Drake featuring Rihanna.

Billboard notes that each of these five songs ranks higher on this week's Hot 100 than it would have had the chart not undergone this week's enhanced role for streaming data. For example, "Somebody That I Used To Know," which leaps from #9 to #5 on the Hot 100, would have inched up to #8 under the old methodology. "Rack City," which rebounds from #17 to #15, would have dipped to #18. "Take Care," which jumps from #11 to #7 (its highest ranking to date), would have remained outside the top 10.

The Hot 100 revamp also resulted in higher rankings for "Dance (A$$)" by Big Sean featuring Nicki Minaj (which rebounds from #42 to #40 instead of falling to #52), Avicii's "Levels" (which rebounds from #74 to #66 instead of falling to #80) and Rihanna's "You Da One" (which rebounds from #97 to #76 instead of falling off the chart).  The magazine also says that the influx of streaming data is the primary reason that M83's "Midnight City" bows at #74 and Skrillex's "Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites" re-enters at #83.

Billboard added a host of streaming services to its formula, including MOG, Muve Music, Rdio, Rhapsody, Slacker and Spotify. The Hot 100 will also include non-demand radio streams from Rhapsody and Slacker, on-demand audio streams from My Space and Guvera, and plays on video request service Akoo. Yahoo! Radio streams and on-demand video plays will continue to contribute to the chart's rankings.

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This is the first significant overhaul of Hot 100 methodology since August 2007. It's unusual for a single to remain #1 when Billboard revamps its chart formula, but it's not unprecedented. In June 1973, Paul McCartney & Wings' "My Love" logged a second week at #1 despite a methodology change so significant that the magazine didn't even print "last week" numbers.

This is the second week in a row in which "We Are Young" has sold more than 300K copies. It's the first song to top 300K in weekly sales twice since LMFAO's "Sexy And I Know It." "We Are Young," which has been #1 on Hot Digital Songs for four of the last five weeks, evokes such '70s hit-makers as Elton John and Billy Joel, together with a hint of Fleetwood Mac's adventurous 1979 hit "Tusk."

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Kelly Clarkson's former #1 smash "Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You)" holds at #2 for the second week. The song tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week. It's Clarkson's third song to reach that plateau, following "My Life Would Suck Without You" (2,601,000) and "Since U Been Gone" (2,449,000). Clarkson will soon land her fourth 2 million seller. Jason Aldean's "Don't You Wanna Stay," on which she is featured, is up to 1,986,000.

Two current top five hits, The Wanted's "Glad You Came" and "Somebody That I Used To Know" by Gotye featuring Kimbra, both top the 1 million mark in digital sales this week. Both songs reached #1 in the U.K. "Glad You Came" was on top there for two weeks in July; "Somebody That I Used To Know" is currently in its fourth week at #1 in the U.K.

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

1. fun. featuring Janelle Monae, "We Are Young." The song holds at #1 for the second week in its 12th week on the chart. This is its fifth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #1 (322K).

2. Kelly Clarkson, "Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You)." The former #1 song holds at #2 for the second week in its 12th week on the chart. This is its eighth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #3 (175K).

3. Adele, "Set Fire To The Rain." The former #1 song holds at #3 for the second week in its 28th week on the chart. This is its 12th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #9 (114K).

4. The Wanted, "Glad You Came." The song holds at #4 for the second week in its ninth week on the chart. This is its third week in the top 10. The song was #1 in the U.K. for two weeks in July. Digital sales rank: #2 (191K).

5. Gotye featuring Kimbra, "Somebody That I Used To Know." The song jumps from #9 to #5 in its 10th week on the chart. This is its second week in the top 10. The song is #1 in the U.K. for the fourth week, the longest run so far this year. Digital sales rank: #5 (153K).

6. David Guetta featuring Nicki Minaj, "Turn Me On." The song rebounds from #8 to #6 in its 15th week on the chart. This is its eighth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #18 (79K).

7. Drake featuring Rihanna, "Take Care." The song jumps from #11 to #7 (a new peak) in its 17th week on the chart. This is its second week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #15 (84K).

8. Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa featuring Bruno Mars, "Young, Wild & Free." The song dips from #7 to #8 in its 22nd week on the chart. This is its sixth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (103K).

9. Nicki Minaj, "Starships." The song jumps drops from #6 to #9 in its fourth week on the chart. It has been in the top 10 the entire time. Digital sales rank: #4 (163K).

10. Katy Perry, "Part Of Me." The former #1 song drops from #5 to #10 in its fourth week on the chart. It has been in the top 10 the entire time. Digital sales rank: #7 (124K).

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"We Found Love" by Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris dips from #10 to #11, ending a 23-week run in the top 10. The song tops the 4 million mark in digital sales this week. It's Rihanna's fifth 4 million-seller. Only one other artist, Katy Perry, has had so many 4-million-sellers. Perry has had six.

This is the second week in a row that a Rihanna song has topped the 4 million mark. "Umbrella" (featuring Jay-Z) hit the mark last week. But whereas that 2007 smash took nearly five years to sell 4 million copies, "We Found Love" did it in just 25 weeks. Rihanna's three other 4-million sellers are "Disturbia" and two "rap/sung" collabos on which she was featured:  Eminem's "Love The Way You Lie" and T.I.'s "Live Your Life."

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Nicki Minaj's "Super Bass" also tops the 4 million mark in digital sales this week. It's the first song by a female rapper to reach that plateau. No other songs by female rappers (as the lead artist) have hit even 2 million. Minaj's "Moment 4 Life" (featuring Drake) is second, with sales of 1,594,000. Missy Elliott's "Lose Control" is third, with sales of 1,359,000. (Elliott's biggest hits, including the mega-hit "Work It," were released before the advent of digital, or in the early years of digital, when sales were slimmer.)

Now, in the immortal words of Casey Kasem, "on with the countdown."

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"Wild Ones" by Flo Rida featuring Sia jumps from #19 to #12 in its 10th week. This is vying to become Flo Rida's seventh top 10 hit; the first for Sia. Digital sales rank: #6 (151K)… "Ass Back Home" by Gym Class Heroes featuring Neon Hitch jumps from #20 to #16 in its 13th week. The song has climbed as high as #12…Calvin Harris' "Feel So Close" jumps from #34 to #22 in its fifth week, leapfrogging over Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe," which jumps from #31 to #24 in its third week. Digital sales rank for Jepsen: #8 (118K).

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One Direction's "What Makes You Beautiful" leaps from #44 to #33 in its fourth week. The boy band's debut album, Up All Night, is vying with Adele's 21 for #1 on next week's Billboard 200…"Talk That Talk" by Rihanna featuring Jay-Z jumps from #46 to #36 in its 11th week. The song has climbed as high as #31…Taylor Swift is rebounding with two songs. "Ours" jumps from #48 to #39 in its 18th week. The song has climbed as high as #13. "Safe And Sound" (featuring The Civil Wars) leaps from #69 to #60 in its ninth week. The song has climbed as high as #30.

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John Mayer's "Shadow Days" bows at #42. It's the first single from Mayer's fifth studio album Born And Raised, which is due May 22. The album was originally slated for release in October, but was postponed because Mayer underwent throat surgery that month. His ordeal has also forced him to cancel a tour.

You may be surprised to learn that, after nearly a decade of pop stardom, Mayer has yet to land a top 10 hit on the Hot 100. He has had six top 20 hits as a lead artist: "No Such Thing" (#13), "Your Body Is A Wonderland" (#18), "Daughters" (#19), "Waiting On The World To Change (#14), "Say" (#12) and "Who Says" (#17).

"Shadow Days" will be right behind Andy Gibb's "Shadow Dancing" in the next edition of Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles. I'm sure Mayer would be happy if his song did even half as well as that 1978 smash, which logged seven weeks at #1.

Beyonce's "Love On Top" jumps from #54 to #48 in its 17th week. The song has climbed as high as #20. The song is #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the third straight week...Dierks Bentley's "Home" jumps from #58 to #53 in its 18th week. The song has climbed as high as #44. The song jumps to #1 on Hot Country Songs. It's Bentley's ninth #1 country hit..."Aay Ladies" by Travis Porter featuring Tyga leaps from #88 to #56 in its second week…"Princess Of China" by Coldplay featuring Rihanna jumps from #75 to #65 in its eighth week. The song has climbed as high as #20.

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Eric Church's "Springsteen" jumps from #79 to #67 in its second week. So, when was the last time Bruce Springsteen was this high on the Hot 100? It came in August 2002, when his 9/11-themed song, "The Rising," reached #52. Of course, Springsteen is primarily an album artist. His new Wrecking Ball enters The Billboard 200 at #1 this week. You already know that if you read Chart Watch: Albums. If you missed it, here's a link.

Ellie Goulding's "Lights" jumps from #78 to #68 in its 12th week…George Strait's "Love's Gonna Make It Alright" jumps from #77 to #69 in its eighth week… "Up!" by LoveRance featuring IamSu & Skipper or 50 Cent (now that's odd billing) jumps from #92 to #79 in its second week…Karmin's "Brokenhearted" debuts at #84.

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