Ask Billboard: What Are Your 2011 Favorites?

Adele's a Social Climber: Hits No. 1 on Social 50 Chart

Ask Billboard is updated every week. As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, sales and airplay, as well as general music musings, to askbb@billboard.com. Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S.


WHAT ARE YOUR 2011 FAVORITES?

"Why was

Ask Billboard is updated every week. As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, sales and airplay, as well as general music musings, to askbb@billboard.com. Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S.


SWIFT SALES

Hey Gary,

With Taylor Swift having been named Billboard's Woman of the Year, I was wondering if you could please recap her best-selling singles and albums.

Thanks,

Theodore Richert
Seattle, Washington


Hi Theodore,

Swift's sales totals tell only part of the story as to how she has ascended to her vaunted pop culture status, impressive as they are. Her ability to relate to her fans has become a trademark.

"As you enter down a career path, it becomes very clear what that career path is going to ask of you," Swift recently told Billboard. "One of the things that is a huge part of making music and putting it out into the world is understanding that you now have a role in shaping the lives of the next generation.

"You can either accept that role or you can deny it and ignore it and say it's a parent's job to raise their kids. But, the reality is what you wear matters. If you're a singer and on TV and in the living room of some 12-year-old girl, she's watching what you're wearing and saying and doing.

"For me, when

Ask Billboard is updated every week. As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, sales and airplay, as well as general music musings, to askbb@billboard.com. Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S.


MORE NO. 11s FOR '11

Hi Gary,

I know I'm a little late to the party, but I've been thinking a lot about the thread you started a few weeks ago in Chart Beat regarding songs that have had the misfortune of peaking at No. 11 on the Hot 100, inspired in part by the date of 11¬-11-11 and Dev's "In the Dark" recently stalling in that position.

I can imagine how frustrated artists must feel when one of their releases climbs that high but fails to squeak into the top 10. Even I, as a fan, have been frustrated by that occurrence when a song I like climbs no higher.

In the last few weeks, you and readers listed several songs that got stuck at No. 11 on the Hot 100, but some others come to mind that I thought might be of interest. In chronological order:

"Promises, Promises" (1983), Naked Eyes. I had the pleasure of hearing Pete Byrne sing this hit last year in concert. It's one of the moodiest (and greatest!) New Wave hits of the '80s. Their massive hit "Always Something There to Remind Me" is still on the radio today, but I always thought this track is the more compelling song (and much more indicative of the group's overall sound/ style).

"A Love Bizarre" (1985), Sheila E. Co-written by Prince, this song had a long, steady climb to the upper reaches of the Hot 100. Though it stopped at No. 11 on the master chart, it peaked at No. 2 on R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and No. 1 on Dance/Club Play Songs, making it the top-charting single, across all formats, of Sheila E.'s career.

"Dare Me" (1985), Pointer Sisters. I always enjoyed this sassy track, the lead single from their album "Contact." Alas, it is their last top 30 hit to-date. It made the top 10 at R&B and became their first and only Dance No. 1.

"I'll Be Over You" (1986), Toto. I've always been a sucker for '80s power ballads. This is one of the best, with its melancholy tone. And, it gets bonus points for the wonderful background vocals by Michael McDonald.

"100% Pure Love" (1994), Crystal Waters. I absolutely love dance music and this is one of those songs that I was rooting for, hoping it would ultimately find its way into the top to. Indeed, this song had incredible longevity. It spent 45 weeks on the Hot 100, which, at the time, made it one of the three longest-charting singles in the entire history of the Hot 100 (nearly 40 years at that point). It was also one of the top 100 songs of the year for both 1994 and 1995. Waters has scored seven Dance No. 1s.

"I Need You," "Can't Fight the Moonlight" (2000, 2002), Leann Rimes. Her blockbuster "How Do I live" (1997) peaked at No. 2 and spent a then-record-breaking 69 weeks on the Hot 100 (more than any other song in history until Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours" in 2009). Her two next-highest-charting singles both had the misfortune of peaking at No. 11. Oddly, they have the distinction of being released from soundtracks: "Need" from "Jesus: Music from & Inspired by the Epic Mini Series" and "Moonlight" from "Coyote Ugly" soundtrack. Peaking at No. 71 in its original release, "Moonlight" picked up additional steam in late 2001 when offered to radio in a dance mix and has the distinction of charting on Country, Pop, Adult and Dance charts.

As always, thank you, Gary, for providing us chart fanatics with such well-researched and well-written columns each week!

All best,

Christopher Brisson