Female artists lock up the top three positions on the Billboard Hot 100 for the seventh consecutive week. That's the longest that women have owned the top three slots since early 1999, when, for 10 straight weeks, a man didn't have so much as a "featured" credit on a top three hit. Lorde's "Royals" is #1 for the fifth week. Katy Perry's "Roar" holds at #2 and Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" holds at #3.
Billboard's Gary Trust reports that the last time women controlled the top three spots this long was from Jan. 23 to March 27, 1999. The main difference this time around is that just these three songs have locked up the top three for seven weeks. In 1999, six songs bounced in and out of the top three to account for the 10-week lock.
The songs included Britney Spears' first hit, "…Baby One More Time," and Cher's most recent major hit, "Believe," as well as Brandy's "Have You Ever?," Deborah Cox's "Nobody's Supposed To Be Here," Monica's "Angel Of Mine" and Whitney Houston's "Heartbreak Hotel" (featuring Faith Evans & Kelly Price). The female lock was finally busted the week of April 3, 1999 when Sugar Ray's "Every Morning" cracked the top three. Which male hit will finally break into the top three this time? Place your bets.
This is the ninth consecutive week that a female solo artist has topped the Hot 100. "Roar" and "Wrecking Ball" were each #1 for two weeks immediately prior to Lorde's reign. This is the first time that #1 spot has been held by a female artist for nine straight weeks since Carly Rae Jepsen did it, all by herself, last summer with "Call Me Maybe."
Lorde's evocative ballad spends its second week atop the Hot 100 Airplay chart. It's in its fifth week at #1 on Hot Digital Songs. That's the longest run at #1 on the digital chart for a hit by a female artist (in a lead or featured role) since Taylor Swift's "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" spent its first five weeks at #1 in the summer of 2012.
"Royals" also debuts at #1 on the U.K.'s Official Singles Chart. Lorde, who turns 17 on Nov. 7, is the youngest solo artist to have a "transatlantic #1 hit" (a song that reached #1 in both the U.S. and the U.K.) since Tiffany, who was 16 and three months in January 1988 when "I Think We're Alone Now" reached #1 in the U.K. (having already hit #1 in the U.S.)
Besides these two young women, only one other solo artist had a transatlantic #1 before turning 17. Paul Anka was 16 and one month in September 1957 when "Diana" hit #1 in the U.S. (having already hit #1 in the U.K.) That makes him the youngest solo artist to achieve the feat.
All three members of the brother trio Hanson were under 17 when they did the trick with their great hit "MMMBop." Isaac Hanson was 16 and six months in June 1997 when the song hit #1 in the U.K. (having already hit #1 in the U.S.) Taylor was 14 and two months. Zac was 11 and nine months.
Katy Perry's "Roar" holds at #2 for the second straight week. Perry's album, PRISM, enters The Billboard 200 at #1. "Unconditionally," the second single from the album, enters the Hot 100 at #30. An album track, "Dark Horse" (featuring Juicy J), vaults from #57 to #28 in its sixth week. It has climbed as high as #17.
Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" holds at #3 for the second straight week. The song tops the 2 million mark in U.S. sales this week. It's her second song to sell 2 million or more copies so far this year. "We Can't Stop" is up to 2,694,000. Cyrus is the only female artist to notch two 2 million-sellers so far in 2013.
Avicii's "Wake Me Up!" holds at #4 for the fourth straight week. It's #1 on Dance/Electronic Songs for the eighth week. It's #2 on Hot Digital Songs, its highest ranking to date.
"Hold On, We’re Going Home" by Drake featuring Majid Jordan holds at #5 for the fourth straight week. It's #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the fifth week.
"Holy Grail" by Jay Z featuring Justin Timberlake rebounds from #8 to #6 in its 16th week. It returns to #1 on Hot Rap Songs after being displaced last week by Eminem's "Rap God." This is its 12th week on top.
Lady Gaga's "Applause" rebounds from #9 to #7 in its 11th week. Gaga's new song, "Do What U Want" (featuring R. Kelly) enters the Hot 100 at #13. (This is R. Kelly's highest ranking in 6-1/2 years (!), since "I'm A Flirt" (featuring T.I. & T-Pain) peaked at #12 in April 2007.) "Do What U Want" enters Hot Digital Songs at #3 (156K). Both songs are from ARTPOP, Gaga's third full-length studio album, which is due Nov. 11.
OneRepublic's "Counting Stars" jumps from #15 to #8 in its 19th week. It's the group's third top 10 hit, following "Apologize" (on which Timbaland was credited as the lead artist) and "Good Life."
Imagine Dragons' "Demons" jumps from #12 to #9 in its 27th week. It's the band's second top 10 hit. "Radioactive" logged 20 weeks in the top 10. As of this week, "Radioactive" has sold 5 million copies in 2013. It's #3 for the year-to-date. It sold an additional 546K copies in 2012.
As of this week, two songs have sold 6 million copies in 2013: "Blurred Lines" by Robin Thicke featuring T.I. + Pharrell (6,126,000) and “Thrift Shop” by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz (6,013,000). This is the second year in a row that two songs have sold 6 million copies in a calendar year. The milestone was reached in the same week last year. As of the week ending Oct. 28, 2012, "Somebody That I Used To Know" by Gotye featuring Kimbra had sold 6,584,000 copies in 2012. Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" had sold 6,023,000.
A total of 30 songs have sold 2 million or more copies so far in 2013. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Justin Timberlake have each had three. (Timberlake's total includes the aforementioned "Holy Grail," on which he is in the featured slot.)
Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 songs.
The Top Five: Lorde’s "Royals" holds at #1 for the fifth week in its 17th week on the chart. This is its ninth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #1 (222K)…Katy Perry’s "Roar" holds at #2 for the second week in its 12th week on the chart. This is its 11th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #8 (111K)…Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" holds at #3 for the second week in its 10th week on the chart. This is its seventh week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #5 (136K)…Avicii’s "Wake Me Up!" holds at #4 for the fourth week in its 18th week on the chart. This is its 10th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #2 (158K)…"Hold On, We’re Going Home" by Drake featuring Majid Jordan holds at #5 for the fourth week in its 12th week on the chart. This is its eighth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #12 (94K)
The Second Five: "Holy Grail" by Jay Z featuring Justin Timberlake rebounds from #8 to #6 in its 16th week on the chart. The song has climbed as high as #4. It has been in the top 10 the entire time. Digital sales rank: #16 (75K)…Lady Gaga’s "Applause" rebounds from #9 to #7 in its 11th week on the chart. The song climbed as high as #4. It has been in the top 10 the entire time. Digital sales rank: #15 (80K)…OneRepublic's "Counting Stars" jumps from #15 to #8 in its 19th week on the chart. It's the group's third top 10 hit. Digital sales rank: #4 (152K)…Imagine Dragons' "Demons" jumps from #12 to #9 in its 27th week on the chart. It's the band's second top 10 hit. Digital sales rank: #11 (99K)…Ylvis' "The Fox" drops from #6 to #10 in its eighth week on the chart. This is its fifth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (100K).
Two songs drop out of the top 10 this week. Eminem's "Rap God" drops from #7 to #21 in its second week. "Blurred Lines" by Robin Thicke featuring T.I. + Pharrell dips from #10 to #11 in its 28th week, ending a phenomenal 21-week run in the top 10. Note: "Rap God" drops from #1 to #9 on Hot Digital Songs (106K).
"23" by Mike WiLL Made It featuring Miley Cyrus, Wiz Khalifa & Juicy J rebounds from #14 to #12 in its sixth week. The song has climbed as high as #11…Passenger's "Let Her Go' jumps from #19 to #17 in its 13th week…Luke Bryan's "That's My Kind Of Night" dips from #17 to #18 in its 11th week. This is its 11th week at #1 on Hot Country Songs. It's the first hit by a male solo artist to stay on top this long since Buck Owens' "Love's Gonna Live Here" had 16 weeks on top in 1963.
AWOLNATION's inexhaustible "Sail" rebounds from #23 to #19 in its 60th week on the chart. The song has climbed as high as #17… Justin Bieber's "Hold Tight" debuts at #29. This is the latest in Bieber's Music Mondays series. (The Osmonds had a #14 hit in August 1972 titled "Hold Her Tight.") Digital sales rank: #7 (111K)…Sara Bareilles' "Brave" jumps from #38 to #32 in its 20th week. The song has climbed as high as #31.
Taylor Swift's "Sweeter Than Fiction" debuts at #34. Digital sales rank: #6 (114K). It's from the forthcoming movie, One Chance. It's Swift's fourth movie song to crack the top 40, following "Today Was A Fairytale" from Valentine's Day (#2 in 2010) and two songs from The Hunger Games: "Safe & Sound" (with The Civil Wars, #30 in 2012) and "Eyes Open" (#19 in 2012). Swift co-wrote "Sweeter Than Fiction" with fun.'s Jack Antonoff. That would make them eligible for an Oscar nomination for Best Song. Something tells me Swift would manage to clear space in her crowded trophy case for an Oscar.
"Timber" by Pitbull featuring Ke$ha jumps from #46 to #35 in its third week…The Neighbourhood's "Sweater Weather" jumps from #53 to #42 in its 20th week (just in time for "Sweater Weather"—even in California!)
Eric Church's "The Outsiders" debuts at #51. Church's highest-charting song, "Springsteen," reached #19 last year. FYI, A group called The Outsiders reached the top five in April 1966 with "Time Won't Let Me"…"Stay The Night" by Zedd featuring Hayley Williams jumps from #69 to #58 in its sixth week. The song has climbed as high as #51.
"Wait For A Minute" by Tyga & Justin Bieber debuts at #68. This is from The Gold Album: 18th Dynasty…Florida Georgia Line's "Stay" jumps from #85 to #71 in its second week…Fifth Harmony's "Miss Movin' On" rebounds from #92 to #82 in its 11th week. The song has climbed as high as #76. The female quintet's EP Better Together enters The Billboard 200 at #6 this week.
The Band Perry's "Don't Let Me Be Lonely" jumps from #97 to #85 in its second week…"Rough Water" by Travie McCoy featuring Jason Mraz debuts at #90…Rihanna's "What Now" debuts at #96. It's the fifth single from Unapologetic, which last November became her first #1 album on The Billboard 200…Romeo Santos' "Propuesta Indecente" re-enters the chart at #100. The song has climbed as high as #79.
"F**kin Problems" by A$AP Rocky featuring Drake, 2 Chainz and Kendrick Lamar tops the 2 million mark this week. The song reached #8 on the Hot 100. Jay Z's 2004 classic "99 Problems" peaked at #30. Maybe the "F" word helped!