I have bad news for Beyonce fans. This is the first year in which B has failed to crack the top 10 since Destiny's Child exploded in 1998. This stat combines Destiny's Child and solo recordings, as well as featured credits on hits by Jay-Z and Lady Gaga. There are still two weeks left in Nielsen SoundScan's tracking year, but this week corresponds to the Dec. 31 issue of Billboard, so there is no way that Beyonce's name can appear on a top 10 hit in a 2011 issue of Billboard.
Beyonce's best showing of 2011 came in August, when the stinging, kiss-off ballad "Best Thing I Never Had" peaked at #16. Her second best showing of the year came in September, when "Love On Top" debuted and peaked at #20. Third best came in June when "Run The World (Girls)" peaked at #29. In retrospect, the disappointing showing of that feminist anthem foretold what would be an unexpectedly difficult year for Beyonce on the Hot 100.
Beyonce has three songs on this week's chart, but none of them rank in the top 50. "Party" (featuring Andre 3000) dips from #55 to #57, "Countdown" re-enters at #91 and "Love On Top" rebounds from #98 to #94. "Party" has climbed as high as #50. "Countdown" has reached #71.
Please note that the headline says "Beyonce's Streak Interrupted," rather than "Beyonce's Streak Ends," because I have no doubt that she'll resume her winning ways.
"We Found Love" by Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris tops the Hot 100 for the eighth week, which is the longest run at #1 by any single since Ke$ha's "TiK ToK" had nine weeks on top in early 2010. It's the longest run at #1 for a collabo since "Low" by Flo Rida featuring T-Pain had 10 weeks on top in early 2008. It's the longest run at #1 for a boy-girl collabo (hey, we leave no stone unturned) since "Candy Shop" by 50 Cent featuring Olivia had nine weeks on top in early 2005.
"We Found Love" sold just 149K copies this week, which is a tepid showing for a #1 hit. This is the third week in a row in which no songs have sold 200K. That's the longest stretch in which no songs have sold 200K since the fall of 2009, when it happened for five weeks straight. (Owl City's "Fireflies" was the best-seller for four of those five weeks.)
Despite the current lull, this has been a good year for digital song sales. With two weeks to go in the tracking year, the industry has already broken records for the number of 3-million-sellers (13, up from 12 in all of last year) and 1-million-sellers (98, up from 86 in all of last year).
LMFAO's "Sexy And I Know It" logs its seventh week at #2. It's the first hit to have such a long peak at #2 (assuming this is its peak) since Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" spent seven weeks at #2 two years ago. The last song to have a longer peak at #2 was "I Don't Wanna Know" by Mario Winans featuring P. Diddy and Enya, which had eight weeks in the runner-up spot in 2004. This is the 28th consecutive week that LMFAO has appeared in the top five, thanks to the combined strength of "Party Rock Anthem" and "Sexy And I Know It."
Flo Rida's "Good Feeling" jumps from #5 to #4, which is its highest ranking to date. It's the only song in the top five that made an upward move. Only two other Flo Rida hits have climbed this high on the Hot 100: "Low" (featuring T-Pain) and "Right Round." They both had long runs at #1.
Katy Perry's "The One That Got Away" dips from #4 to #5. It's starting to look like this will not become her record-breaking sixth #1 hit from Teenage Dream, though the release of a remix featuring B.o.B keeps hope alive. Whether it makes it to #1 or not, it's a solid record and a solid hit.
"Ni**as In Paris" by Jay-Z/Kanye West holds at #6. This is one of the biggest hits ever to mention Paris in its title. Freddy Martin & His Orchestra had a big hit with "April In Paris" in 1934. Les Baxter & His Orchestra had a top 20 hit with "I Love Paris" in 1953. The latter song originated in the Broadway musical Can Can.
Here's the low-down on this week's top 10 songs. I show the year-to-date ranking on all songs that are in the top 30 for the year-to-date.
1. Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris, "We Found Love." The song logs its eighth straight week at #1. This is its 13th week on the chart; its 12th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #2 (149K). The song ranks #25 for the year-to-date.
2. LMFAO, "Sexy And I Know It." The song logs its seventh straight week at #2. This is its 16th week on the chart; its 13th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #1 (149K). The song ranks #21 for the year-to-date.
3. Bruno Mars, "It Will Rain." The song holds at #3 for the fourth week in its 12th week on the chart. This is its sixth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #4 (129K).
4. Flo Rida, "Good Feeling." The song jumps from #5 to #4 in its 12th week on the chart. This is its seventh week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #5 (125K).
5. Katy Perry, "The One That Got Away." The song dips from #4 to #5 in its 10th week on the chart. This is its fifth week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #6 (117K).
6. Jay-Z/Kanye West, "Ni**as In Paris." The song holds at #6 in its 19th week. This is its third week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #7 (108K).
7. Adele, "Someone Like You." The former #1 song holds at #7 in its 24th week on the chart. This is its 16th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (84K). The song ranks #10 for the year-to-date.
8. David Guetta featuring Usher, "Without You." The song rebounds from #9 to #8 in its 16th week on the chart. This is its 12th week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #10 (82K).
9. Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera, "Moves Like Jagger." The former #1 song dips from #8 to #9 in its 26th week on the chart. This is its 21st week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #6 (105K). The song ranks #4 for the year-to-date.
10. T-Pain featuring Wiz Khalifa & Lily Allen, "5 O'Clock." The song holds at #10 in its 12th week on the chart. This is its second week in the top 10. Digital sales rank: #9 (88K).
"Dance (A$$)" by Big Sean featuring Nicki Minaj jumps from #14 to #12 in its 11th week. Digital sales rank: #8 (89K)…Adele's "Set Fire To The Rain" vaults from #21 to #13 in its 16th week. It's starting to look like another #1 hit for Adele. Digital sales rank: #7 (100K)…J. Cole's "Work Out" jumps from #15 to #14 in its 16th week… "Young, Wild & Free" by Snoop Dogg & Wiz Khalifa featuring Bruno Mars rebounds from #22 to #18 in its 10th week. The song has already cracked the top 10.
Selena Gomez & the Scene's "Love You Like A Love Song" finally cracks the top 30 in its 26th week. It jumps from #31 to #26. The record's crisp pop sound reminds me a bit of Petula Clark, one of the best pop singers of the mid-1960s…Jessie J's "Domino" leaps from #38 to #28 in its 10th week… "International Love" by Pitbull featuring Chris Brown leaps from #46 to #30 in its seventh week.
Ke$ha's "Sleazy Remix 2.0 Get Sleazier" (featuring Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, T.I. and Andre 3000) opens at #38. This is a remix of "Sleazy," from Ke$ha's 2010 EP Cannibal. That song debuted and peaked at #51 in November 2010. In January, "The Sleazy Remix" (featuring Andre 3000) gained some traction, but didn't chart. Now this all-star "remix of the remix" is taking off. (Incidentally, acts have been getting "Sleazy" for many years now. The Village People had a song called "Sleazy" in 1979, which was the B side of their Hot 100 hit "Ready For The 80's.")
"Lotus Flower Bomb" by Wale featuring Miguel jumps from #44 to #38 in its eighth week. It also jumps to #1 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. It's Wale's first #1; Miguel's second, following "Sure Thing," which hit #1 in May…Zac Brown Band's "Keep Me In Mind" dips from #35 to #36 in its 12th week. The song holds at #1 on Hot Country Songs for the second week...Taylor Swift's "Ours" leaps from #65 to #47 in its sixth week. The song has already reached #13…Breathe Carolina's "Blackout" jumps from #58 to #49 in its seventh week.
"Turn Me On" by David Guetta featuring Nicki Minaj re-enters the chart at #68. The song has already climbed as high as #37…Jake Owen's "Alone" jumps from #90 to #72 in its second week…Keith Urban's "You Gonna Fly" jumps from #91 to #79 in its second week.
Tim McGraw's "Better Than I Used To Be" bows at #81. It's from McGraw's 11th studio album, Emotional Traffic, which is due on Jan. 17… "Round Of Applause" by Waka Flocka Flame featuring Drake jumps from #97 to #86 in its second week…AWOLNATION's "Sail" jumps from #100 to #89 in its 18th week.
Glee Cast's version of Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" opens at #92. The original version peaked at #13 in December 1984. Bob Geldof and Midge Ure of Ultravox co-wrote the song, which was the template for "We Are The World" and other charity singles…Gym Class Heroes' "Ass Back Home" (featuring Neon Hitch) debuts at #100. The group's previous single, the superb "Stereo Hearts" (featuring Adam Levine), is #26 for the year-to-date, with sales of 2,393,000. That's a hard act to follow.
Florence + the Machine's 2010 hit "Dog Days Are Over" tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week. Two current hits, Blake Shelton's "God Gave Me You" and Jason Derulo's "It Girl," top the 1 million mark. "It Girl" is the second million-selling song to name-check the Grammys. "King Tut," a 1978 novelty hit by Steve Martin and the Toot Uncommons, was certified gold.
Holiday Schedule: A week from today, right on schedule, we'll post both regular weekly blogs, Albums and Songs. Two weeks from today, on Jan. 4, I'll update both of the recently-posted year-end blogs to reflect the year's final rankings and tallies.