Ask Billboard is updated every Friday. As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, sales and airplay, as well as general music musings, to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S.
READERS' FAVORITE CHARTED ODD COUPLES
Chart Beat reader Chris Feldman had a great suggestion in asking for "odd couples" who've teamed up musically. Here are a few of my favourites:
Julio Iglesias and Willie Nelson
The debonair Spaniard and the scruffy country outlaw made an unusual, but perfect, team on "To All the Girls I've Loved Before" (1984), which reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 1 in Canada. The song marked Iglesias' first appearance on Country Songs, where the song reached No. 1.
Rosie O'Donnell and Cher
The multi-media forces teamed for "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" (1999), from O'Donnell's album "A Rosie Christmas."
Bryan Adams and Melanie Chisholm
My home country's legendary rocker joined with "Sporty Spice" of the Spice Girls for "When You're Gone" (1998), a No. 11 hit in Canada (and No. 3 in Britain). In 2005, Adams re-recorded the song with another unlikely duet partner, Pamela Anderson (!)
Sarah Brightman and Paul Stanley
The British popera star stole a Kiss (member) for "I Will Be With You" (2008), from Brightman's album "Symphony."
Pet Shop Boys and Dusty Springfield
The British electronic-pop duo joined forces with the '60s folk-pop star for the 1988 No. 2 "What Have I Done to Deserve This?," her first top 10 since 1969.
DNA and Suzanne Vega
The British dance duo is best remembered for its overhaul of folk singer Vega's former a capella album cut from 1987. The remix hit No. 5 on the Hot 100 in 1991.
Clint Eastwood and Merle Haggard
Film star Eastwood is known for his love of jazz music, but in 1980 he joined forces with country star Haggard for "Bar Room Buddies" a No. 1 country hit from the film "Bronco Billy."
Thank you, Chris, for suggesting this interesting topic.
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Per the topic of unexpected musical pairings, not so much for their sounds, but the accident that led to Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond's duet version of "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" deserves a mention.
A clever Kentucky DJ, Gary Guthrie, combined each artist's solo recordings to create a 1978 Hot 100 No. 1 and what I consider one of the best love songs of all-time.