Stories on Nelly, Celine Dion, Toby Keith, 'Lilo & Stich,' Elvis Presley vs JXL.
'HOT' AND 'CANDLE': Nelly staves off a challenge from himself to remain No. 1 for a seventh week on Billboard's Hot 100 with "Hot in Herre" (Fo' Reel/Universal). That makes "Hot" the second-longest running chart-topper of 2002, behind Ashanti's 10-week run with "Foolish."
With seven weeks under his belt, Nelly beats the six-week reign of Usher's "U Got It Bad," giving Nelly the longest-running No. 1 hit by a solo male artist since Elton John ruled for 14 weeks with "Candle in the Wind 1997" / "Something About the Way You Look Tonight."
Even if "Hot in Herre" falls from pole position next week, Nelly is likely to remain on top. That's because he moves 3-2 with the follow-up, "Dilemma," which features Kelly Rowland of Destiny's Child. Nelly is the third artist in 2002 to hold down the top two spots, following Ja Rule and Ashanti. The difference is that Ja Rule and Ashanti were featured artists on one of their top two songs. In Nelly's case, he is the first artist to be listed as the first or only name on the top two titles since April 1978, when the Bee Gees secured the No. 1 and No. 2 positions with "Night Fever" and "Stayin' Alive." The only other act to do this in the history of the Hot 100 is the Beatles.
'COME' NOT UNDONE: Lest there be any doubt, 2002 has the second-slowest turnover rate of No. 1 songs on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart since this tally was introduced in 1961. As of the week ending Aug. 10, only two titles have advanced to the top: "Simple Things" by Jim Brickman with Rebecca Lynn Howard and "A New Day Has Come" by Celine Dion. The former was No. 1 for one week, and the latter sets a new record by remaining on top for the 20th week in a row. That beats the 19-week reigns of "Because You Loved Me," also by Dion, and "You'll Be in My Heart" by Phil Collins.
The only year with a slower turnover rate of No. 1 hits was 1996. During this same week -- Aug. 10, 1996 -- Eric Clapton's "Change the World" became the second song to march into pole position, succeeding Dion's then-record setting "Because You Loved Me." That year, the third song to become No. 1 didn't move to the top until the week of Nov. 9.
LIFE IS BUT A DREAM(WORKS): His last album marked the first time that Toby Keith penetrated the top-10 of The Billboard 200. "Pull My Chain" peaked at No. 9 during the fateful week ending Sept. 15, 2001. Now, Keith's eighth album to appear on The Billboard 200 becomes his first-ever disc to reach No. 1. "Unleashed" enters at the top, giving Keith his first No. 1 album. It's also the first No. 1 album for the DreamWorks label.
HAWAII, SIX ... OH!: The soundtrack to "Disney's Lilo & Stitch" (Walt Disney) is No. 1 on Billboard's Top Soundtracks chart for the sixth consecutive week. That means the soundtrack to the movie about a Hawaiian girl and a space alien is tied for the second-longest running No. 1 album since this chart was introduced in June 2001. Three months ago, the "Spider-Man" soundtrack began a six-week reign.
"Lilo" and "Spider-Man" are a distant second to the album that ruled this list for 34 weeks, "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" Even so, "Disney's Lilo & Stitch" is the first soundtrack to an animated film to head up the Top Soundtracks tally.
CONTINUING THE 'CONVERSATION': The "Lilo & Stitch" album is full of Elvis Presley recordings and Elvis covers, so this is a good time to mention that Presley's latest posthumous single, "A Little Less Conversation," is continuing to build its airplay story.
While remaining in place at No. 29 on Billboard's Adult Top 40 chart, the Elvis Presley vs JXL song enters the Top 40 Tracks chart at No. 39. With airplay increasing, the song continues to rebound on the Hot 100. "Conversation" moves 53-51 in its fifth chart week, almost back to its peak (and debut) rank of No. 50.