Fred Bronson reports on the latest chart accomoplishments of Fleetwood Mac, the Clash, Nas, Swedish Eurovision hopefuls, and 50 Cent.
RETURN OF THE MAC: The chart history of Fleetwood Mac stretches to a fourth decade, as the band returns to the Hot 100 with the paid download track "Peacekeeper" (Reprise), the first single from the forthcoming album "Say You Will." With a debut at No. 93, "Peacekeeper" is the first Fleetwood Mac recording to appear on the Hot 100 in this century, and the first since a live recording of "Landslide" peaked at No. 51 in 1998. "Landslide" is No. 10 on this week's chart, as the remake by the Dixie Chicks falls from No. 7, but manages another week in the top-10.
Aside from Fleetwood Mac's "Landslide," "Peacekeeper" is the group's only other single to chart in the last 12 years. "Silver Springs" appeared on the Hot 100 Airplay chart in 1997, but never made it to the main Hot 100.
The Fleetwood Mac family tree is a complex one. The first single to chart by the group that started out as a British blues band was "Oh Well - Pt. 1" in January 1970, but that recording pre-dates the line-up that included Christine McVie (who joined in August 1970) and Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks (who were added in January 1975).
Fleetwood Mac's run of hits began with "Over My Head" in November 1975. The band's biggest hit remains its only No. 1 song, "Dreams," from 1977.
"Say You Will" marks Fleetwood Mac's first time in the recording studio with Nicks and Buckingham in 15 years. "Peacekeeper" is the band's 25th chart entry on the Hot 100.
THE CASBAH ROCKS AGAIN: Another group that began its chart history in the 1970s has its first new entry of the 21st century on The Billboard 200. Following its induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Clash debut at No. 99 on the chart with "The Essential Clash" (Legacy/Epic). It's the group's first appearance on the album chart since "From Here to Eternity Live" went to No. 193 in 1999. "Essential" is the highest-ranking Clash album since "Cut the Crap" reached No. 88 in early 1986. That was the year the Clash disbanded.
The group's first album to chart was "Give 'Em Enough Rope" in 1979. But the first LP to appear in the top half of The Billboard 200 was "London Calling," which peaked at No. 27 in 1980. The highest-ranked Clash album to date is "Combat Rock," which included the singles "Rock the Casbah" and "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" The album went to No. 7 in 1983.
'CAN' CAN: "I Can" (Lava), the 17th song featuring Nas as a lead artist on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks, is the artist's first to reach the top-10. "I Can" advances 12-10 this issue. Counting songs where Nas was a featured artist, he has a total of 30 chart entries over the last 10 years. His biggest hit was "Hot Boyz," a No. 1 song for Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott and fellow featured guests Eve and Q-Tip.
THE SEASON HAS BEGUN: Like the sighting of the first robin indicates the arrival of spring, sightings of the first Eurovision CDs of 2003 on the charts of Europe indicate the arrival of the annual song contest, scheduled for May 24 in Riga, Latvia.
In Sweden, a country that takes its Eurovision very seriously, the double-CD "Melodifestivalen 2003" (M&L), containing all 32 contenders to represent Sweden in the competition, debuts at No. 1. Of those 32 songs, 13 enter this week's singles chart. The top four debuts are "Not a Sinner Nor a Saint" by Alcazar at No. 2, "Carnaval" by Mendez at No. 9, "Give Me Your Love" by Fame at No. 11, and "Let Your Spirit Fly" by Jan Johansen and Pernilla Wahlgren at No. 12.
"Give Me Your Love" is the song Sweden is sending to Eurovision. The runner-up choice was "Let Your Spirit Fly."
MEMBERS OF THE CLUB: By racking up a fourth week at No. 1 on the Hot 100, "In Da Club" (G-Unit/Shady/Aftermath/Interscope) by 50 Cent ties "All I Have" (Epic) by Jennifer Lopez featuring LL Cool J as the longest-running chart-toppers of 2003. The only other song to advance to No. 1 this calendar year is "Bump, Bump, Bump" (T.U.G./Epic) by B2K. That title held on to pole position for just one week.