Fred Bronson reports on the latest chart feats of Chubby Checker, OutKast, Beyoncé and Burt Bacharach.
LET'S 'LIMBO' SOME MORE: A name long absent from the single charts returns this week. Debuting at No. 49 on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles Sales chart is "Limbo Rock (Remixes)" (Teec) by Chubby C & OD. Chubby C is, of course, the legendary Chubby Checker.
Born Ernest Evans 62 years ago in Andrews, S.C., Checker made his debut on the Hot 100 the week of May 18, 1959, with "The Class," a novelty recording that featured him impersonating well-known artists such as Fats Domino, the Coasters and Elvis Presley.
Counting from the debut of "The Class," Checker now has a career chart span of 44 years, six months, and two weeks. His biggest hit is "The Twist," a single that went to No. 1 in 1960 and again in 1962.
In 1962, Checker's original recording of "Limbo Rock" peaked at No. 2. The new version, produced by Gary Lefkowith and Mike Rogers (a.k.a. the Hill & HiFi), features the rap duo OD (Jamaican-born Jermaine Brown and Russian-born Hovannes Dilakian). The remixes of "Limbo Rock" are a double-A side with "The Original Master of the Dancehall Beat." Both tracks are included on the Teec album "Classics," featuring re-recordings of Checker's greatest hits.
KASTING KALL: With "Hey Ya!" (Arista) moving 5-3 and "The Way You Move" rebounding 8-5, OutKast is the first group to have two hits in the top-5 of the Hot 100 since TLC had "Creep" and "Red Light Special" in the top-5 the week of April 1, 1995.
One big difference: "Creep" was just completing its stay in the top-5 and was ready to move down, while the follow-up "Red Light Special" was on its way up. The two OutKast songs were released to radio at the same time and are competing with each other for real estate on the Hot 100.
Joining OutKast in the top-5 with twin titles is Ludacris, who is No. 2 with "Stand Up" (Disturbing tha Peace/Def Jam South) and No. 4 with "Holidae In," where he and Snoop Dogg are supporting Chingy. It's the first time that two different acts have top-5 hits at the same time since the week of June 1, 2002, when Ashanti and Usher both had double top-5 hits.
JOIN THE 'CLUB': It looked like 50 Cent had a lock on owning the longest-running No. 1 of 2003 on the Hot 100, but at the very least he'll have to share the honor. "In Da Club" ruled for nine weeks, a reign that has been equaled by Beyoncé and Sean Paul's "Baby Boy" (Columbia).
Earlier this year, Beyoncé spent eight weeks in pole position with "Crazy in Love," giving her 17 weeks at No. 1 in this calendar year. That ties the 17 weeks Nelly spent on top in 2002 with "Hot in Herre" (seven weeks) and "Dilemma" (10 weeks).
Beyoncé and Nelly have the most weeks at No. 1 in a calendar year since 1998, when Monica spent 18 weeks at the summit, with "The Boy Is Mine" (13 weeks) and "The First Night" (five weeks).
BURT AND RON: He's written many an R&B hit, for artists like Dionne Warwick, Jerry Butler and Aretha Franklin, but Burt Bacharach has never appeared on the R&B album chart under his own name until this week.
The debut at No. 22 of "Here I Am: Isley Meets Bacharach" (DreamWorks) gives the veteran songwriter his first entry on Top R&B/Hip-Hop albums, 45 years, 10 months and two week after making his songwriting debut on the Billboard singles chart with Perry Como's "Magic Moments."
A collaboration with Ron Isley of the Isley Brothers, the album is titled after a Dionne Warwick recording from 1965. Warwick's "Here I Am," written by Bacharach with Hal David, was first heard in the film "What's New, Pussycat?" The biggest hit from the film was Bacharach and David's title song, recorded by Tom Jones.