Week Ending May 12, 2013. Songs: #Letdown
“#Beautiful” by Mariah Carey featuring Miguel enters the Hot 100 at #24, lower than I expected. I bet it’s lower than Carey expected, too. The ideal outcome for Carey would have been for Ryan Seacrest to grandly announce on tonight’s American Idol that Carey’s song entered the Hot 100 at #1. Carey has accomplished that chart miracle three times (more often than any other artist) with “Fantasy,” “One Sweet Day” (a collabo with Boyz II Men) and “Honey.”
But it wasn’t to be. The song is easily the week’s highest new entry, but it’s only the eighth highest entry so far this year. Baauer’s “Harlem Shake” debuted at #1 in February. “The Way” by Carey sound-alike Ariana Grande featuring Mac Miller debuted at #10 in March. Other songs to have debuted at #24 or higher so far this year are Demi Lovato’s “Heart Attack” (#12 in March), PSY’s “Gentleman” (#12 in April), Luke Bryan’s “Crash My Party” (#18 in April), “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams (#19 in April) and Justin Timberlake’s “Mirrors” (#24 in February).
“# Beautiful” enters Hot Digital Songs at #10, with first-week sales of 114K. It’s Carey’s eighth top 10 hit on the digital sales chart; her first since “Obsessed” nearly four years ago. It holds at #44 on the Hot 100 Airplay chart. It falls short of the Streaming Songs chart with 461K first-week streams.
This doesn’t mean the song is a bomb. It merely means it may take more time to build into genuine hit status. I still think it will come through. It helps that it’s a great record—one of the most appealing summer jams since Janet Jackson’s “That’s The Way Love Goes” 20 years ago.
“# Beautiful” is vying to become Carey’s 29th top 10 hit on the Hot 100; her first since “Obsessed” hit #7 in September 2009. It’s vying to become the first top 10 hit for Miguel, the highly-touted R&B singer whose breakout hit “Adorn” climbed as high as #17.
The casting on this record is ideal. Carey is a household name with a long string of hits. Miguel is far less well-known, but there’s probably more heat and buzz on him within the industry “# Beautiful” will appear on Carey’s 11th (non-holiday) studio album, which is due this summer.