Future lands his fourth No. 1 album in less than two years, as Future enters the Billboard 200 in the top spot. That’s impressive, but it’s nothing compared to what’s in store for the rapper next week. Future is likely to replace himself at No. 1 with another album, HNDRXX. It would be the first time in chart history that an act has had albums debut at No. 1 in back-to-back weeks.
Future first topped the chart in August 2015 with DS2. He returned to No. 1 two months later with What a Time to Be Alive (a collabo with Drake) and in February 2016 with Evol.
For all his success, Future, 33, has been under-recognized by the mainstream media and awards structure. (He has yet to win a Grammy, an American Music Award, or a Billboard Music Award.) I have a feeling that Future’s profile is about to get a big boost. The idea of debuting at No. 1 in back-to-back weeks is a hook that many in the media will find irresistible.
This really couldn’t have happened prior to 1991, when Nielsen began tracking U.S. music sales. Just six albums debuted at No. 1 prior to the start of the Nielsen era. Two of them were back-to-back releases by Elton John — Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy and Rock of the Westies. Those albums debuted in the top spot 22 weeks apart in 1975. That was the record until this week for the shortest gap between No. 1 debuts by studio albums by one artist (not counting collaborations). Since then, there have been shorter gaps (than Elton’s) between No. 1 debuts, but both titles weren’t studio albums by one artist.
The Glee Cast debuted at No. 1 with three albums or EPs in the space of eight weeks in 2010, but those were TV soundtracks, not albums by one artist. In 2004, Jay Z debuted at No. 1 with an EP collabo with Linkin Park five weeks after debuting at No. 1 with an album-length collabo with R. Kelly, but I’m not counting collabos. Future previously debuted at No. 1 nine weeks, and another time 20 weeks, after debuting at No. 1, but the aforementioned collabo with Drake was involved both times. The Beatles’ Anthology 2 debuted at No. 1 17 weeks after Anthology 1 debuted in the top spot, but those were both compilations of old material.
Will Future make history next week? Stay tuned.
Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” tops the Hot 100 for the fifth week in its seventh week on the chart. That’s the longest run at No. 1 for a record that isn’t a collaboration since Adele’s “Hello” had 10 weeks on top from late 2015 into early 2016.
“Shape of You” sold 147K digital copies this week, which allows it to log its fifth week at No. 1 on Top Digital Songs. The song tops the 1 million mark in digital sales this week.
“Shape of You” logs its seventh week at No. 1 on the Official U.K. Singles Chart. It’s the first song to spend five or more weeks at No. 1 on both sides of the Atlantic since Drake’s “One Dance” (featuring Wizkid and Kyla), which spent 10 weeks at No. 1 in the U.S. and 15 weeks at No. 1 in the U.K.
Another Sheeran song, the ballad “How Would You Feel (Paean),” enters the U.K. chart at No. 2. This is the sixth time in the past seven weeks that Sheeran has occupied the top two spots in the U.K. (The song enters the Hot 100 at No. 41.)
Migos’s “Bad and Boujee” (featuring Lil Uzi Vert) inches up from No. 3 to No. 2 in its 15th week. The song logged three weeks at No. 1.
The Zayn/Taylor Swift duet “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever (Fifty Shades Darker)” dips from its No. 2 peak to No. 3 in its 11th week. Unless it rebounds, it will become Swift’s fourth single to peak at No. 2. The first three were “You Belong With Me,” “Today Was a Fairytale” (which was also from a movie, Valentine’s Day), and “I Knew You Were Trouble.” “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” tops the 1 million mark in digital sales this week.
Bruno Mars lands his 13th top five hit as “That’s What I Like” jumps from No. 7 to No. 4 in its sixth week. This puts Mars in a tie with Rihanna for the most top five hits since 2010. (Can you imagine a collabo by these two?!) This matches the No. 4 peak of Mars’s previous single, “24K Magic.”
The Chainsmokers’ “Closer” (featuring Halsey) holds at No. 5 in its 30th week. It’s the first song in Hot 100 history to spend its first 30 weeks in the top 10. It logged 12 weeks at No. 1. The duo’s follow-up hit “Paris” rebounds from No. 11 to No. 6 in its sixth week. This is its highest ranking to date.
Rihanna’s “Love on the Brain” inches up from No. 8 to No. 7 in its 19th week.
Katy Perry’s “Chained to the Rhythm” (featuring Skip Marley) drops from No. 4 to No. 8 in its second week.
Big Sean’s “Bounce Back” rebounds from No. 10 to No. 9 in its 16th week. The song peaked at No. 6.
“Bad Things” by Machine Gun Kelly and Camila Cabello drops No. 6 to No. 10 in its 17th week. The song peaked at No. 4.
The Weeknd’s “I Feel It Coming” (featuring Daft Punk) drops out of the top 10 this week. I didn’t see that coming. It will probably bounce back.
Kygo and Selena Gomez’s “It Ain’t Me” vaults from No. 93 to No. 12 in its second week. It’s the first top 20 hit for Kygo, a Norwegian DJ/producer. It’s Gomez’s eighth top 20 hit as a solo artist.
“Something Just Like This” by the Chainsmokers & Coldplay debuts at No. 56. It’s from the Chainsmokers’ first full-length album, Memories…Do Not Open, which is due April 7. This is vying to become Coldplay’s third collabo to crack the top 40. “Princess of China,” a collabo with Rihanna, hit No. 20 in 2011. “Lost!,” which featured Jay Z, reached No. 40 in 2009.
“Hey There Delilah” by Plain White T’s tops the 5 million mark in digital sales this week. The poignant, midtempo ballad was No. 1 for two weeks in the summer of 2007. It received a Grammy nomination for Song of the Year.
Bruno Mars’s 24K Magic holds at No. 2 in its 14th week. The album has spent four weeks at No. 2, but has yet to reach No. 1. The last album to do this was Andrea Bocelli’s My Christmas, which logged five weeks in the runner-up slot in November and December of 2009. Uniquely, 24K Magic has finished behind a different No. 1 album in each of its four weeks at No. 2. The albums that aced it out: Metallica’s Hardwired…to Self-Destruct, Pentatonix’s A Pentatonix Christmas, the Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack, and now Future’s Future.
Fifty Shades Darker drops from No. 1 to No. 3 in its second week. It’s No. 1 on Top Soundtracks for the second week.
The Weeknd’s Starboy inches up from No. 5 to No. 4 in its 13th week. The album spent five non-consecutive weeks at No. 1.
Migos’s Culture dips from No. 4 to No. 5 in its fourth week. The album debuted at No. 1.
Big Sean’s I Decided. drops from No. 3 to No. 6 in its third week. The album debuted at No. 1.
Charlie Wilson lands his fourth top 10 album as In It to Win It debuts at No. 7. Wilson formerly fronted the Gap Band, who peaked in the early ’80s when they had back-to-back top 20 albums. The phrase “in it to win it” goes back at least to January 2007, when then-Sen. Hillary Clinton said, at an Iowa rally, “I’m running for president, and I’m in it to win it.” Also, it was Randy Jackson’s catchphrase on American Idol for a couple of seasons circa 2011-2012.
Ryan Adams lands his fifth top 10 album as Prisoner debuts at No. 8. Cher had an album with this title in 1979. It (surprisingly) failed to chart.
Alison Krauss lands her fourth top 10 album as Windy City debuts at No. 9. That tally consists of two solo albums, one album with her group, Union Station, and a best-selling collabo with Robert Plant. Windy City enters Top Country Albums at No. 1, displacing Reba McEntire’s Sing it Now: Songs of Faith and Hope. It’s Krauss’s second No. 1 country album, following Paper Airplane, which she recorded with Union Station.
The Trolls soundtrack drops from No. 7 to No. 10 in its 22nd week. The album has climbed as high as No. 3.
Four albums drop out of the top 10 this week. Adele’s 25 drops from No. 6 to No. 11. Lady Gaga’s Joanne drops from No. 8 to No. 20. Beyoncé’s Lemonade drops from No. 9 to No. 22. The La La Land soundtrack drops from No. 10 to No. 18.
Hamilton: An American Musical holds at No. 17 in its 74th week. This is its 50th consecutive week in the top 20. Prior to this streak, it spent two additional weeks in the top 20, which means the album has now spent a full year in the top 20.
But wait, there’s more! This is Hamilton‘s 63rd week in the top 40. Since 1955, only five Broadway cast albums have logged more weeks in the top 40. They are: My Fair Lady (311 weeks), The Music Man (155), The Sound of Music (127), West Side Story (113), and Flower Drum Song (102). Hamilton has pulled ahead of Fiddler on the Roof (60), Hair (59), Hello, Dolly! (58), Oliver! (53), and Camelot (52). These 11 albums are the only Broadway albums to spend a year or more in the top 40 since 1955.
Coming attractions: In addition to Future’s aforementioned HNDRXX, look for big debuts next week by Little Big Town’s The Breaker and John Mayer’s The Search for Everything: Wave Two.