Billboard Hot 100 Analysis: 5/22/2014

Welcome back for another analysis of the Billboard Hot 100! Here’s all you need to know about the chart released today.

THIS WEEK’S TOP TEN

  1. All Of Me by John Legend
  2. Fancy by Iggy Azalea f/Charli XCX
  3. Problem by Ariana Grande f/Iggy Azalea
  4. Happy by Pharrell Williams
  5. Turn Down For What by DJ Snake & Lil Jon
  6. Dark Horse by Katy Perry f/Juicy J
  7. Talk Dirty by Jason Derulo f/2 Chainz
  8. Not A Bad Thing by Justin Timberlake
  9. Love Never Felt So Good by Michael Jackson & Justin Timberlake
  10. A Sky Full Of Stars by Coldplay

The biggest stories this week in the Top 10 occur at the bottom of the region, as Michael Jackson and Coldplay make historic entries into the Top 10. Let’s start with Coldplay, who register their 3rd career Top 10 (following “Speed Of Sound” and “Viva La Vida”) with “A Sky Full Of Stars,” their EDM-infused single featuring production from Avicii. Following strong sales of Ghost Stories and a well-watched TV concert special last week, “Stars” makes an enormous 43-10 leap.

For Jackson, his posthumous album Xscape debuted at #2 on the Albums chart this week, spurring an equally-impressive 22-9 spike in its third week on the Hot 100. It is Jackson’s first time appearing in the Top 10 since “You Rock My World” peaked at #10 in 2001. This now grants the King of Pop at least one Top 10 single in five consecutive decades, a feat that no artist has ever matched. Going back to his solo debut single “Got To Be There” in 1971, Jackson’s span of Top 10 singles is nearly 43 years, also a record by a wide margin. He also performed in hologram form at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday, so look for even further increased sales reflected in next week’s chart.

Lost in the shuffle of these big jumps this week is the continued strong performances of “Fancy” and “Problem,” which both advance one slot on the chart to reach peak positions. Either song has the potential in the coming weeks to unseat John Legend’s “All Of Me,” which spends a third week at #1, as Hot 100 champion.

BIGGEST MOVERS THIS WEEK

72+ Spots: Midnight by Coldplay (re-enters at #29)

55+ Spots: Headlights by Eminem f/Nate Ruess (re-enters at #45)

39 Spots: Magic by Coldplay (53-14)

33 Spots: A Sky Full Of Stars by Coldplay (43-10)

20 Spots: Stay With Me by Sam Smith (69-49)

  1. As I mentioned earlier, the continued strong sales of Ghost Stories compounded with their TV concert last week prompt giant leaps for all three current Coldplay singles. “Midnight” re-enters the chart at a new peak, and “Magic” also bounds to new heights. Unfortunately for “Midnight” and “Magic,” the success of “A Sky Full Of Stars” will make their continued success dicey.
  2. Following the release of a much-discussed music video involving Eminem’s mother, “Headlights” looks to overcome its initial disappointing chart run, as it re-enters at a new peak position.
  3. See #1
  4. See #1
  5. The young Brit continues to have a breakout 2014, and now all three of the singles he has appeared on this year have reached the Top 50. “La La La”, “Latch,” and “Stay With Me” are incredibly different from each other stylistically, so kudos to Smith for showing plenty of artistic range.

HOT 100 DEBUTS THIS WEEK

Don’t Stop” by 5 Seconds Of Summer (#47)

  • As “She Looks So Perfect” continues its climb up the Hot 100, the Aussie boy band is quick to have a followup single, as “Don’t Stop” easily gains the highest debut this week. This uptempo track cements their cross between the Jonas Brothers and the punk-pop bands of a decade ago. Fans seem to be eating this music up, so there’s no reason to suggest that “Don’t Stop” can’t be a hit as well. The only roadblock will be the continuing success of “She Looks So Perfect,” which could crowd out this newest single. With a favorable radio environment, “Don’t Stop” could easily reach the Top 20. But, I have a feeling that the song might not peak any higher than its lofty debut position and quickly ebb off the Hot 100.

One” by Ed Sheeran (#87)

  • As “Sing” maintains its constant presence in the Top 20, Sheeran scores another charting hit with the newest single from his forthcoming X album. Much different than “Sing”, “One” is a tender acoustic ballad, showcasing his singing ability and emotional delivery. It’s not necessarily as radio friendly as “Sing,” but “One” has the potential to reach the Top 40 this summer, especially once the album is released.

Drunk On A Plane” by Dierks Bentley (#91)

  • Perhaps I put too much faith in Bentley after I really enjoyed his first 2014 single “I Hold On.” Unfortunately, he has returned to his goofy country ways with “Drunk On A Plane,” which is everything the title makes it sound like: nothing interesting musically, and a clichéd story about a booze-filled party high in the sky. His name is still big in country, so the song could easily rise into the Top 50 this summer, but a forgettable and brief chart run is also entirely possible.

Main Chick” by Kid Ink f/Chris Brown (#92)

  • Kid Ink is one of 2014’s biggest surprises right now, as “Show Me” has spent over 6 months on the Hot 100 and still is logging weeks on the chart. Eager to replicate his success, Kid Ink has literally reused all of the elements of what made “Show Me” popular: a chorus by Chris Brown and production by DJ Mustard. This combination worked perfectly last time, so it’s definitely within the realm of possibility for “Main Chick” to experience a comparable level of success. We’ll set a best case scenario for a peak somewhere in the 20s.

Chainsaw” by The Band Perry (#94)

  • The Band Perry is quickly running out of material to re-release from last year’s Pioneer. Once again, they’re singing an angry rant about a jilted love, something they’ve done before with “Better Dig Two,” “Done,” and “Tornado.” This lack of originality might be catching up to them, so look for “Chainsaw”‘s run to match the disappointment last fall of “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely.”

Heaven” by Jake Worthington (#98)

  • Covering Bryan Adams’ classic, Worthington makes his first appearance on the Hot 100. He was named on Tuesday night as the runner-up for Season 6 of The Voice, so look for some of his song performances from this week’s finale to replace “Heaven” next week after it almost surely disappears from the chart.

 

Once again, it’s a relatively light week for debuting singles on the Hot 100. The only songs I think that have the potential to pass up “Don’t Stop”‘s current peak position are “One” and “Main Chick”. However, I think that the balladic Sheeran single might not be pop-friendly enough for significant radio airplay. So, even though I’m not a fan in the slightest of the song, I think that Kid Ink and Chris Brown’s latest collaboration has the best chance of reaching the Top 40 and catching up to 5 Seconds Of Summer’s head start.

#1 SONGS ON THE GENRE CHARTS

  • POP: All Of Me by John Legend (#1 on Hot 100)
  • COUNTRY: Play It Again by Luke Bryan (#21 on Hot 100)
  • ROCK: A Sky Full Of Stars by Coldplay (#10 on Hot 100)
  • ALTERNATIVE: Fever by The Black Keys (#83 on Hot 100)
  • R&B/HIP-HOP: All Of Me by John Legend (#1 on Hot 100)
  • RAP: Fancy by Iggy Azalea f/Charli XCX (#2 on Hot 100)
  • DANCE/ELECTRONIC: Turn Down For What by DJ Snake & Lil Jon (#5 on Hot 100)
  • LATIN: Bailando by Enrique Iglesias (#75 on Hot 100)

FINAL THOUGHTS

  1. In part due to The Voice champion Josh Kaufman’s performance of it last week, OneRepublic’s “Love Runs Out” re-enters the Hot 100 this week at #69. I picked this track to be a summer hit a few weeks ago, and I am still optimistic about its prospects. I’ll keep a close watch on the song’s performance in the next few weeks to see if my prediction can come to fruition.
  2. It was a tough week for some of the biggest sleeper hits of the winter. The upward leaps of the three Coldplay singles caused Martin Garrix’s “Animals,” Ellie Goulding’s “Burn,” and Avicii’s “Hey Brother” to bid farewell to the Hot 100. All three songs impressively registered at least 25 weeks on the chart despite never reaching the Top 10.

 

That’s all for this week! I’ll be back on Thursday with a look at the next edition of the Hot 100. More predictions and analysis coming at you in a week!

Until then,

Ryan

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