THE B.E.G.I.N.N.I.N.G.: Once they wondered, where is the love? This week, all the Black Eyed Peas need to do to answer that question is peruse a host of Billboard charts, where evidence of adoration for the quartet is abundant.
The Peas' fifth studio album, "The E.N.D.," becomes its first No. 1 with its penthouse debut on the Billboard 200. The ranking bests the No. 2 peak of the group's last release, 2005's "Monkey Business." "Elephunk" rose to No. 14 in 2003, while, prior to the addition of vocalist Fergie, "Behind the Front" reached at No. 129 in 1998 and "Bridging the Gap" peaked at No. 67 in 2000.
With "Boom Boom Pow," the lead single from the new album, atop the Billboard Hot 100 for an 11th week, the Black Eyed Peas become just the second duo or group this decade to command the Billboard 200 and Hot 100 simultaneously. OutKast topped both charts for four weeks in January and February 2004, when "Speakerboxxx/The Love Below" reigned on the former survey and "Hey Ya!" led the latter list.
Since the Hot 100 and Billboard 200 converted to Nielsen-powered data in 1991, only four duos or groups other than the Black Eyed Peas and OutKast have monopolized the summits simultaneously:
Santana, "Smooth," from "Supernatural," three weeks, 1999
Boyz II Men, "I'll Make Love to You," from "II," four weeks, 1994
Ace of Base, title cut from "The Sign," one week, 1994
Kris Kross, "Jump," from "Totally Krossed Out," two weeks, 1992
We haven't finished our Peas yet. On the Billboard Hot 100, "I Gotta Feeling" blasts in directly below "Boom Boom Pow" at No. 2 (the Hot 100's highest bow since David Archuleta's "Crush" opened at No. 2 on the Aug. 30, 2008, chart). BEP's new single, its second-highest-charting Hot 100 hit, supplants its predecessor on Hot Digital Songs after 10 weeks.
How rare is it for a duo or group to rank at Nos. 1 and 2 on the Hot 100 in the same week? In the chart's almost 51-year history, following are the only duos or groups prior to the Black Eyed Peas to accomplish the double honor:
OutKast, "Hey Ya!" and "The Way You Move," eight weeks in 2003-04
Bee Gees, "Night Fever" and "Stayin' Alive," five weeks, 1978
The Beatles, "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "She Loves You," six weeks; "Can't Buy Me Love" and "Twist and Shout," four weeks, 1964
Included in the Beatles' historic run was its record lock on the entire top five the week of April 4, 1964. From No. 1 to No. 5 that week: "Can't Buy Me Love," "Twist and Shout," "She Loves You," "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "Please Please Me."
WHAT A 'WONDER'-FUL CHART: As "Wonder Woman," Lynda Carter was empowered with the ability to deflect bullets. This week, she earns one on Top Jazz Albums.
Almost 30 years after the last episode of the beloved TV series aired on CBS, its title star twirls onto the tally at No. 6 with "At Last."
Carter's album, featuring such standards as the title cut, "You Send Me" and a medley including "The Way You Look Tonight," is the second from the distinguished actress and singer. While she was upholding justice (and winning hearts) amidst the run of "Wonder Woman" from 1975 to 1979, Carter released her sole prior set, "Portrait," in 1978. She had sung in clubs nationwide as a teen and later duetted with such icons as Ray Charles, Tom Jones and Kenny Rogers.
Avid fans may remember a particular instance where Carter married her passions for stage and song. A 1979 episode of "Wonder Woman" featured Carter singing two tracks from "Portrait."
Carter previously drew Billboard chart ink as a featured performer on the Top DVD Sales chart. The first two seasons of "Wonder Woman" lassoed peaks of Nos. 18 and 34, respectively, in 2004 and 2005.
TEENA LOVE AFFAIR: Another artist with career roots in the '70s returns. Teena Marie first appeared on the Billboard 200 the week of May 5, 1979. The singer, who rose to No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Lover Girl" in 1985, this week notches her second-highest-charting album, as "Congo Square" dances onto the Billboard 200 at No. 20.
Of Teena Marie's 12 Billboard 200 chart entries, only "La Dona" rose higher, debuting and peaking at No. 6 in May 2004.
CAN'T SPELL MARY J. BLIGE WITHOUT 'R' AND 'B': The format cornerstone charts her 57th entry on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, as "The One" opens at No. 60. Blige arrived with the eventual No. 1 "You Remind Me" on the May 2, 1992, chart.
Blige's sum extends her lead for most charted titles among women in the '90s and '00s. In second place is Mariah Carey with 47 entries, although that total should increase next week. "Obsessed," the first single from Carey's "Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel," due Aug. 25, looks likely to roar onto next week's chart following its release to radio Tuesday (June 17).
LET'S HEAR IT FOR THE BOYS: Pet Shop Boys pocket their 25th top 10 on Hot Dance Club Songs, as "Love Etc." lifts 13-9. The pair extends its record for most top 10s among duos or groups, ahead of Erasure and New Order (16 top 10s each). Among all acts, Pet Shop Boys trail only Madonna (52 top 10s) and Janet Jackson (31).
The twosome of Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe, whose new album "Yes" last month became its highest-charting on the Billboard 200 (No. 32) since "Very" (No. 20) in 1993, first graced Hot Dance Club Songs with its introductory entry "West End Girls" on March 15, 1986. The smash became the act's first of eight No. 1s, most, with Depeche Mode, among duos or groups.
RUBIO REIGNS: Paulina Rubio ascends to her fourth No. 1 on Hot Latin Songs, as "Causa Y Efecto" catapults 10-1. A veteran of the survey since Nov. 28, 1992, Rubio was rewarded with her first leader, "Te Quise Tanto," in February 2004. "Dame Otro Tequila" topped the chart that December, and "Ni Una Sola Palabra" held sway in fall 2006.
The new song's jump to No. 1 is the fourth greatest vault to the top among women in the chart's 22-year archives. Two belong to Rubio:
13-1, "Vivo Y Muero En Yu Piel," Jennifer Pena, 2004
12-1, "Que Hiciste," Jennifer Lopez, 2007
12-1, "Te Quise Tanto," Paulina Rubio, 2004
10-1, "Causa Y Efecto," Paulina Rubio, 2009
Enrique Iglesias owns the list's all-time largest leap to the pinnacle. His "Dimelo" vaulted 49-1 on the chart dated May 19, 2007.
Rubio releases her ninth studio album, "Gran City Pop," June 23.
CHART BEAT BITS: After posting a pair of Country Music Television awards Tuesday (June 17), including video of the year for "Love Story," Taylor Swift soars 32-18 on the Billboard Hot 100 with "You Belong With Me." The song, which rises 9-8 on Hot Country Songs and debuts on Mainstream Top 40 at No. 40, returns to the top 20 on the Hot 100 for the first time since the chart dated Nov. 22, 2008. It debuted that week at No. 12 on the strength of digital sales as a preview track from her then-forthcoming album "Fearless" ...
At nine weeks, Drake's "Best I Ever Had" completes the fastest flight to No. 1 by an artist making a maiden voyage on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs in eight years. In 2001, Lil Romeo made his format entrance with "My Baby," which reached No. 1 in its sixth frame. Credited to the label Hip Hop Since 1978, Drake's song is the list's first independently-distributed No. 1 since Lil Jon's "Snap Yo Fingers" on TVT in 2006 ...
Sonic Youth's "The Eternal" enters the Billboard 200 at No. 18, granting the veteran rock band its highest-charting album. Previously, the act, formed in New York in 1981, had peaked as high as No. 34 with "Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star" in 1994. It made its initial Billboard 200 appearance with "Goo" the week of July 14, 1990 ...
As "Back II Eden" becomes Donald Lawrence's third No. 1 on Hot Gospel Songs, a notable release enters Top Gospel Albums. The compilation "A Gospel Tribute to President Barack Obama," featuring contributions from Donnie McClurkin, Israel Houghton and other gospel artists, bows at No. 10. The album is the second President Obama-inspired set to reach the list, following "Yes We Can" in February ...
One last Black Eyed Peas-related item this week: on the Billboard Canadian Hot 100, "Boom Boom Pow" isn't the only entry to repeat a word in its title. K'Naan re-enters with "Bang Bang," as do the Pussycat Dolls with "Hush Hush." Fittingly, the returning tracks appear back-to-back, at Nos. 92 and 93 ...