Fred discusses chart action from "Change Is Gonna Come," Rihanna, Janet and more!

IN THESE CHANGING TIMES: We've all heard the word "change" quite a bit during the last two years, and with the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States, the idea that change is going to come seems very real. So it's the perfect moment for the Sam Cooke composition "A Change Is Gonna Come" to return to Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for the first time in over 43 years, especially since Obama referenced the lyrics in his victory speech.

A remake by Seal enters the list at No. 100. This is only the second time in this survey's history that this classic civil rights song has charted; Cooke's original peaked at No. 9 in February 1965. The song marks the first appearance of Seal on the R&B tally since his remake of Steve Miller's "Fly Like an Eagle" peaked at No. 44 in December 1996.

It's not that "A Change Is Gonna Come" has been out of our consciousness for 43 years. Many artists have covered the tune over the decades, and Syesha Mercado gave a stunning, emotional performance of it last season on "American Idol," a week after I suggested it might be a good song for her. But it is Seal who brings "Change" back to the chart. It's the first remake of a Sam Cooke-penned song to appear on this list since the Manhattans sent "You Send Me" to No. 20 in 1985.

"A Change Is Gonna Come" isn't the only Obama-themed song debuting this week. Will.i.am's "It's a New Day" (will.i.am/Interscope) enters the Hot 100 at No. 78 and "My President" (CTE/Def Jam) by Young Jeezy featuring Nas bows at No. 92 on the Hot 100 and No. 54 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.


EIGHT HITS COULD HOLD HER: The debut of "Rehab" (SRP/Def Jam) on the Hot 100 at No. 91 gives Rihanna her eighth hit from her "Good Girl Gone Bad" album. That's the highest number of actively promoted singles any artist has extracted from one album since Shania Twain had eight hits from "Come On Over" from 1997-1999. Rihanna's octet of hits has arrived a little faster, in one year and seven months, the time elapsed between the debut of "Umbrella" in April 2007 and this week's arrival of "Rehab."

Janet Jackson could have had eight hits from "Rhythm Nation 1814," except her label decided not to release a commercial product on the eighth single, "State of the World," and only sent promotional copies to radio, making the 1991 song ineligible for the Hot 100 according to chart rules in effect at that time.

Here is a summary of Rihanna's eight charting tracks from "Good Girl Gone Bad," in chronological order:

"Umbrella," No. 1 for seven weeks (2007) [Rihanna featuring Jay-Z]
"Shut Up and Drive," No. 15 (2007)
"Hate That I Love You," No. 7 (2007) [Rihanna featuring Ne-Yo]
"Don't Stop the Music," No. 3 (2008)
"Take a Bow," No. 1 for one week (2008)
"If I Never See Your Face Again," No. 51 (2008) [Maroon 5 featuring Rihanna]
"Disturbia," No. 1 for two weeks (2008)
"Rehab," No. 91 to date (2008)


'HEARTLESS' NOT CHARTLESS: Kanye West already had the second-highest Hot 100 debut of 2008 with "Love Lockdown," which started at No. 3. Now he scores the third-highest new entry of the year, with a No. 4 bow for "Heartless" (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam). It's the 12th song to debut in the top four this century. Here is a recap of the highest new entries of 2008:

No. 2: "Crush," David Archuleta (Aug. 30)
No. 3: "The Time of My Life," David Cook (June 7)
No. 3: "Love Lockdown," Kanye West (Oct. 4)
No. 4: "Heartless," Kanye West (Nov. 22)
No. 5: "Burnin' Up," Jonas Brothers (July 12)
No. 5: "Swagga Like Us," Jay-Z & T.I. featuring Kanye West & Lil Wayne

With "Love Lockdown," "Heartless" and "Swagga Like Us" all debuting in the top five, West has three of the year's top six debuts.


GO 'BELONG': A new entry at No. 12 for "You Belong With Me" (Big Machine) gives Taylor Swift her fifth top 20 debut of 2008. That ties the all-time record for the number of top 20 debuts in a calendar year, set three months ago by the Jonas Brothers when "A Little Bit Longer" bowed at No. 11 the week of Aug. 23.

While Swift and the Jonases have racked up their five top 20 debuts in one calendar year, they each only need two more songs to enter within the top 20 to tie the all-time record for career top 20 debuts, held by Janet Jackson and Madonna.

Here are Jackson's seven top 20 debuts, in chronological order:

"That's the Way Love Goes," No. 14 (1993)
"Again," No. 15 (1993)
"Scream," No. 5 (1995) [Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson]
"Runaway," No. 6 (1995)
"Together Again," No. 9 (1997)
"I Get Lonely," No. 3 (1998) [Janet featuring BLACKstreet]
"All for You," No. 14 (2001)

And here are Madonna's seven top 20 debuts:

"Rescue Me," No. 15 (1991)
"Erotica," No. 13 (1992)
"You'll See," No. 8 (1995)
"Frozen," No. 8 (1998)
"Ray of Light," No. 5 (1998)
"Don't Cry for Me Argentina," No. 17 (1997)
"Hung Up," No. 20 (2005)

Mariah Carey and the Beatles are tied with six career top 20 debuts each.


'HURTS' SO GOOD: A 21-16 hike on Modern Rock Tracks for "Love Hurts" (Immortal/Epic) givers Incubus its 13th top 20 hit on this tally – out of 13 songs charted.

The first eight Incubus tracks to chart all made the top 10. After "Make a Move" hiccupped at No. 17 in 2005, the band added three more top 10 hits to its total. Time will tell if "Love Hurts" becomes Incubus' 12th top 10 hit or second song to miss that elite tier.

The group just needs four more top 20 hits to tie the groups with the highest number of top 20 songs in this chart's history: U2 and Red Hot Chili Peppers.


THE DEBORAH COX STORY: Canadian singer Deborah Cox returns to Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs after a gap of over five years. "Did You Ever Love Me" (Deco) enters at No. 83. It's the first Cox title to chart since "The Morning After" peaked at No. 63 in January 2003.

Cox's biggest hit to date remains "Nobody's Supposed to Be Here," which topped the survey for 14 weeks in November 1998.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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