Fred Bronson reports on the ins and outs of Billboard's charts as they relate to Gavin Degraw, Fantasia, Tim McGraw and Rick James.
'DON'T' DOES: It was a long journey, but after 22 weeks, and after being stuck at No. 11 for the last three, Gavin Degraw has his first top 10 hit on Billboard's Adult Top 40 chart with "I Don't Want to Be" (J).
The song moves 11-9 this week, making Degraw the first solo male artist to have a top 10 hit on this survey in 2004. The last solo male artist to appear in the Adult Top 40 top 10 was John Mayer, who ended a 12-week run in the top 10 the week of Dec. 6, 2003, with "Bigger Than My Body."
Sharp chart observers might ask why Five For Fighting's "100 Years," which was in the top 10 as recently as four weeks ago, doesn't count. Five For Fighting's label, Columbia, considers the act a group, even though at its heart it is the creation of one man, Jon Ondrasik.
'BELIEVE' IN FANTASIA: For the eighth consecutive week, "American Idol" winner Fantasia has the best-selling single in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan. "I Believe" (J) ties "God Bless the U.S.A." by the second season American Idol Finalists as the third-longest-running No. 1 hits by artists from the "Idol" franchise on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles Sales chart.
In second place is Clay Aiken's "Solitaire" (RCA) at nine weeks, and in first place is Aiken's "This Is the Night" at 11 weeks.
Adding in the five weeks Kelly Clarkson was No. 1 with "A Moment Like This" and the week Kimberley Locke led the list with "8th World Wonder," "Idol" artists have now topped Hot 100 Singles Sales for an accumulated 42 weeks.
'LIVE' FOR TODAY: Tim McGraw's "Live Like You Were Dying" (Curb) just needs one more week on top of Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart to become McGraw's longest-running chart-topper.
"Live Like You Were Dying" is in its sixth non-consecutive week at No. 1, after being interrupted for one week by Reba McEntire's "Somebody."
In 1997, McGraw's duet with his wife Faith Hill, "It's Your Love," was No. 1 for six weeks. In 1998, his "Just to See You Smile" also had a six-week run at the top.
Of the 10 songs to advance to No. 1 in 2004, "Live Like You Were Dying" is the longest running. Two tracks ruled for five weeks each: "When the Sun Goes Down" by Kenny Chesney & Uncle Kracker and "Redneck Woman" by Gretchen Wilson.
R.I.P. RICK JAMES: Less than two weeks after his death at age 56, Rick James returns to a Billboard singles chart. "Super Freak" (Gordy/Motown) is a new entry at No. 50 on the Hot Digital Tracks survey and marks James' first appearance on this relatively new tally.
James last appeared on the Hot 100 in the spring of 1985, when "Can't Stop" peaked in the same position, No. 50. "Super Freak," originally a hit in 1981, peaked at No. 16 on the Hot 100.