Shakira, Rihanna's 'Remember' Roars At Radio

Shakira

Gomillion & Leupold/RCA Records

The pair's new single, from Shakira's forthcoming album, is off to a fast start at pop and Latin pop radio after its first day of release

Shakira's new single, "Can't Remember to Forget You," featuring Rihanna, has received a warm welcome at radio following its release yesterday (Jan. 13).

After its first day of availability, the lead track from Shakira's first RCA Records album, due March 25 (her first English-language set since 2009's "She Wolf"), has vaulted into the top 20 of the Nielsen BDS-based Pop Songs and Latin Pop Songs building charts. Airplay has been boosted by hourly plays yesterday on participating Clear Channel Media + Entertainment-owned English-language pop stations. The song received 1,172 first-day plays on 143 U.S. stations, amounting to 11 million all-format audience impressions.

Radio programmers say that, while it's too early to forecast the song's long-term fortunes, early returns are encouraging for the reggae-tinged "Remember."

"When I heard that Shakira would be collaborating with Rihanna on her new single, I couldn't wait to hear it," says Clear Channel-owned WHTZ (Z100) New York program director Sharon Dastur. "After I first heard it, it exceeded my expectations in a great way. Their voices sound wonderful together." Z100 played the song 16 times yesterday.

"Listener reaction on the phones and our social media has been great. Shakira is back."

"My first impression of [hearing] the track was excitement," echoes Alex Tear, WHYI (Y100) Miami VP of programming and Clear Channel national top 40 brand coordinator. "I couldn't wait to find out our listeners' reactions, as they are the ultimate judge and jury. Response was immediately positive and curious. Shakira's ties with Miami and South Florida are very tight and Ri's track record speaks for itself.

With Y100 also having played the song 16 times yesterday, "We expect this pair of dynamic females to do well," Tear says. "We're looking forward to more tracks from Shakira to make 2014 big for her."

In addition to its swift radio launch, "Remember" ranks in the top 10 of the iTunes Store. Stay tuned to Billboard.com for exclusive first-week sales projections and a forecast of where the song might debut on the airplay/sales/streaming-based Billboard Hot 100 to be refreshed next Wednesday (Jan. 22).

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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