Billboard Hot 100 Analysis: 8/14/2014



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


  1. Rude by MAGIC!
  2. Stay With Me by Sam Smith
  3. Fancy by Iggy Azalea f/Charli XCX
  4. All About That Bass by Meghan Trainor
  5. Am I Wrong by Nico & Vinz
  6. Problem by Ariana Grande f/Iggy Azalea
  7. Maps by Maroon 5
  8. Chandelier by Sia
  9. Bang Bang by Jessie J, Ariana Grande & Nicki Minaj
  10. Boom Clap by Charli XCX

Jumping 8-4, “All About That Bass” earns the Digital Gainer award for the fourth straight week. As I teased last week, this is the first time this has ever happened in the history of digital sales counting towards Hot 100 data. The track now sits atop the iTunes charts, so it won’t be able to win Digital Gainer again, but a shot at #1 on the Hot 100 appears to be the next move for this infectious late-summer hit.

At #10, “Boom Clap” becomes the second soundtrack single to reach the Top 10 this year, as the Fault in Our Stars hit joins Frozen‘s “Let It Go.” For Charli XCX, she earns her first Top 10 as lead artist to with her contributions on Icona Pop’s “I Love It” and “Fancy” (which is still hanging strong at #3).

Falling 6-9, the second-week drop for “Bang Bang” was much less severe than I was anticipating. As such, the future bodes well for the all-star track, as its digital sales have settled into a sustainable (and impressive) pace for the upcoming weeks.



25 Spots: Small Town Throwdown by Brantley Gilbert f/Justin Moore & Thomas Rhett (93-68)

24 Spots: Hot Boy by Bobby Shmurda (96-72)

22 Spots: This Is How We Do by Katy Perry (88-66)

22 Spots: Day Drinking by Little Big Town (100-78)

19 Spots: Don’t by Ed Sheeran (69-50)


  1. Last Tuesday was the annual televised CMA Music Festival, which typically showcases the biggest collaborative hits, in a way to show as many popular artists in as little time as possible. “Small Town Throwdown” was one such song performed, leading to its abrupt jump this week into a new peak position.
  2. Vine must still be more of a popularity gauge than I had thought, because “Hot Boy” continues to dominate musical videos on that platform. As such, it’s parodical digital sales have helped it rise much quicker and faster than I could have predicted.
  3. Everybody could see this coming. As she continues her “Prismatic” world tour (she was just in Cleveland on August 14), the hit parade of singles from the album continues to roll out. A similar pattern of upward movement could give Perry her 18th consecutive Top 40 single. Unsurprisingly, this number began with the onset of her career, and equals the total number of charting, non-promotional singles she has released.
  4. Little Big Town saw a similar fate to Brantley Gilbert et al. with their performance last week of “Day Drinking.” Following a one-week stint last month, the song has bounced back nicely in its second trip on the Hot 100.
  5. Digital sales continue to spur the growth of “Black Widow.” Once the music video drops on Wednesday, expect the track to make a spirited run towards the Top 10 and give Rita Ora her first trip to the uppermost region of the Hot 100.


“Anaconda” by Nicki Minaj (#19)

  • Featuring a more-than-obvious sampling of “Baby Got Back,” Nicki Minaj rides this humorous track to her second consecutive week helming the Top Debut. Whereas “Pills N Potions” attempted to showcase another side of her artistry, “Anaconda” is pure Nicki Minaj: witty, brash, and thumping. I suspect that its chart fate won’t be as stellar as “Starships,” the only lead track of hers to debut higher, but that’s no indictment. Look for it to possibly hang around the teens for a while before losing its novelty factor.

“Wild Life” by Jack & Jack (#87)

  • No Wikipedia information exists about this presumable duo, but Wickipedia (see what I did there?) can tell you that I saw their names on the marquee of the Cleveland House of Blues this afternoon, so they’re evidently big enough to headline there. From what I’ve read, the two are big stars on Vine, and “Wild Life” is a classic social media-ready track, with all the bass drops and forgettable hook lines (get wild like wildlife) that lend themselves well to Vine. I misfired with “Hot Boy” last week, but I still don’t think that “Wild Life” can peak any higher than #80.

“Fireball” by Pitbull f/John Ryan (#93)

  • The island sound is alive and well on the Hot 100, as the continuing success of “Rude” and “Bailando” can prove. Adding his name to the mix is the perennial hitmaker Pitbull, who follows up the disappointing (by his standards) “Wild Wild Love” with “Fireball,” enlisting relatively unknown singer John Ryan to help with the chorus. The song is a lot of fun, and has some fun acoustic guitar and saxophone work blended with the reliably-witty wordplay. “Wild Wild Love” peaked at #30, and I think “Fireball” is a more hitworthy song, so look for it to peak somewhere in the vicinity of #20.

“Cold One” by Eric Church (#96)

  • I am a huge fan of Church’s 2014 The Outsiders album, and “Cold One” is a perfect example of why. Refusing to succumb to the pop-friendly strains of current country music, he lets his musicians shine in this schizophrenic romp, which alternates frenetically between humorous but subdued lyrics and a frantic guitar improv battle in double time. I’ve heard it on the radio already, but it doesn’t have the mainstream flair to last as long as other contemporary hits. Thus, I’d be surprised (but overjoyed) if it peaked any higher than #40.

“About The Money” by Young Thug (#99)

  • Since “No Mediocre” has become a surprise Top 40 hit, T.I. is right back at it with this new collaboration with rapper/singer Young Thug of “Stoner” fame. This song is sonically a mess, as neither voice ever quite settles into a rhythm. The result is a choppy and atonal mix of generic and unintelligible. It might not be a one-and-done (though that is very possible), but it shouldn’t peak any higher than #85 at best.


Just like last week, a very high Top Debut makes the race for “biggest hit” one of catching up. I like “Cold One” a lot, but it doesn’t have the mainstream pull needed to make a run into the Top 20. The only song with the potential to reach “Anaconda”‘s lofty start is “Fireball,” thanks to Pitbull’s established star power and his timely recognition of the current pop trends. Look for Mr. 305’s (or Mr. Worldwide if you’re more globally-inclined) latest hit to start a healthy trek up the chart next week.



  • POP: Rude by MAGIC! (#1 on Hot 100)
  • COUNTRY: Burnin’ It Down by Jason Aldean (#22 on Hot 100)
  • ROCK: A Sky Full Of Stars by Coldplay (#37 on Hot 100)
  • ALTERNATIVE: Riptide by Vance Joy (#64 on Hot 100)
  • R&B/HIP-HOP: Fancy by Iggy Azalea f/Charli XCX (#3 on Hot 100)
  • RAP: Fancy by Iggy Azalea f/Charli XCX (#3 on Hot 100)
  • DANCE/ELECTRONIC: Latch by Disclosure f/Sam Smith (#11 on Hot 100)
  • LATIN: Bailando by Enrique Iglesias (#12 on Hot 100)


  1.  Three of the four highest debuts last week ended up being one-and-dones (at least for now). Despite impressive starts, Maroon 5’s “It Was Always You,” Maddie & Tae’s “Girl In A Country Song” and Hilary Duff’s “Chasing The Sun” bowed out after just a single frame.

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,



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