Q&A With Richard Marx: Bill Should've Known Better
Q&A With Richard Marx: Bill Should've Known Better

'MEAN' STREAK: Taylor Swift is having the last laugh on the brand of critic she skewers in her latest Country Songs top 10, "Mean."

As the song lifts 12-9, Swift has reached the chart's top 10 with all 13 of her singles (excluding holiday fare) promoted to country radio. She joins Carrie Underwood as the only women to begin their chart histories with as many consecutive top 10s dating to the survey's 1944 launch. (Underwood scored her 13th top 10 with "Mama's Song," which peaked at No. 2 in January).

Prior to the pair, Connie Smith had held the record among women with 12 straight career-opening Country Songs top 10 singles (1964-68).

Swift and Underwood's streaks are the best among all artists since Tracy Lawrence arrived with 19 consecutive top 10s in 1991-97.

The two female stars are likely decades, however, from breaking the chart's all-time out-of-the-gate top 10 mark among all artists. Eddy Arnold sent his first 58 single releases (including B-sides) into the top tier between 1945 and 1955.

Perhaps surprisingly, some of the most heralded female performers in the genre's archives made more relatively inauspicious Country Songs arrivals.

Loretta Lynn ("I'm a Honky Tonk Girl") and Dolly Parton ("Dumb Blonde") reached Nos. 14 and 24, respectively, with their first chart entries.

Barbara Mandrell and Shania Twain each stopped at No. 55 on their first tries.

And, the female artist with the most Country Songs top 10s (59), Reba McEntire, peaked at No. 88 with her first charted title, "I Don't Want to Be a One Night Stand," which bowed 35 years ago this week (May 8, 1976). McEntire didn't reach the top 10 until her 11th chart entry, "(You Lift Me) Up to Heaven," ascended to No. 8 in 1980.

As Swift makes Country Songs history, she crosses another title to the Pop Songs radio airplay chart, as "The Story of Us," from her former Billboard 200 and Country Albums No. 1 "Speak Now," starts at No. 37.

INTO 'DEEP': As Adele's "Rolling in the Deep" holds at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100, the song becomes her first top 10 (12-7) on Radio Songs and her first No. 1 (2-1) on Adult Pop Songs. The song spends a 14th frame atop the Triple A adult alternative airplay chart, extending the mark for longest reign for a title by a female artist on the tally.

Two other tracks from her album "21," which logs a sixth week atop the Billboard 200, debut on airplay charts. "Rumour Has It" begins on Triple A (No. 26) and her reinvention of the Cure's "Lovesong" enters Jazz Songs (No. 29).

MIC'D TV: Five songs premiered last Tuesday (April 26) on Fox and NBC's 8 p.m. offerings debut on the Hot 100.

The cast of Fox's "Glee" extends its record to 137 Billboard chart entries, as four tracks bow, led by its "I Feel Pretty"/"Unpretty" mashup. While "I Feel Pretty" makes its first Hot 100 appearance, the song first appeared on the album that has spent the most weeks at No. 1 in the 55-year history of the Billboard 200; the "West Side Story" soundtrack led the list for 54 frames beginning 49 years ago today (May 5, 1962).

With its update of TLC's "Unpretty" and Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" (No. 44), the "Glee" cast has now returned 42 former Hot 100 No. 1s to the chart.

The show whose premiere last Tuesday beat "Glee," and all competition, in its timeslot, NBC's new music reality competition "The Voice," prompts the Hot 100 arrival of contestant Javier Colon, whose R&B-tinged take on "Time After Time" debuts at No. 65. The bow marks the song's third Hot 100 visit, following Cyndi Lauper's 1984 original (No. 1, two weeks) and Inoj's 1998 pop/R&B cover (No. 6).

("The Voice" decision-makers are allowing sales of digital singles from the program's contestants to be reported to Nielsen SoundScan. Such releases are, thus, eligible for Billboard charts; weekly sales for "American Idol" tracks, however, continue to be withheld by "Idol" executives and, therefore, the series' singles remain ineligible to appear on Billboard surveys upon their releases).

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