1. Madonna Debuts Three Tracks on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs Chart

    December 24, 2014 6:15 PM EST A trio of tracks from her upcoming 'Rebel Heart' album debut days after their arrival. Madonna catapults onto Billboard 's Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart with three tracks from her upcoming Rebel Heart album: "Bitch I'm Madonna" (No. 14), "Living for…

  2. 'Voice' Winner Craig Wayne Boyd Debuts at No. 1 on Hot Country Songs

    December 24, 2014 2:33 PM EST Craig Wayne Boyd , the seventh-season winner of NBC's The Voice , rockets onto Billboard 's Hot Country Songs chart at No. 1 with his coronation single "My Baby's Got a Smile on Her Face." Boyd becomes just the second artist to launch at No. 1 since Hot…

  3. Taylor Swift Back at No. 1 on Billboard 200, Nicki Minaj Debuts at No. 2

    December 24, 2014 11:00 AM EST Taylor Swift makes an expected return to the top of the Billboard 200 chart, as her 1989 album hops up one rung, bringing its total (nonconsecutive) weeks atop the list to six. The set shifted 375,000 equivalent units in the week ending Dec. 21 (up 16 percent), according to Nielsen Music. …

  4. Billboard 200 Chart Moves: J. Cole's Trio of No. 1 Albums Puts Him in Elite Hip-Hop Company

    December 19, 2014 9:49 PM EST J. Cole is one of six rap acts to hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with their first three full-length studio albums On the latest Billboard 200 albums chart, J. Cole 's 2014 Forest Hills Drive debuted at No. 1 , his third consecutive album to reach the top slot (his entire output of…

  5. Hot 100 Chart Moves: Sam Smith Brings 'Merry Little Christmas' to Chart for First Time

    December 19, 2014 12:15 PM EST Smith's version of the 70-year-old ballad makes its first Hot 100 appearance, joining carols by Mariah Carey and Ariana Grande. Plus, moves for Usher and Charli XCX. As previously reported , Taylor Swift 's "Blank Space" leads the Billboard Hot 100 for a fifth week,…

  6. Windowing New Music May Not Goose Sales, Study Shows

    December 18, 2014 12:01 PM EST A case study by on one song in two different territories by two Spotify executives shows why windowing releases might not be a good idea. The Spotify duo, director of economic development Will Page and analyst Kenny Ning, chose to look at how Meghan Trainor 's "All About That Bass…

  7. BandPage Touts Big Sales Metrics for Artists' Merch

    December 18, 2014 9:00 AM EST BandPage has announced a few large metrics today, over a year after signing key deals with Spotify (where it recently became the only way to place merchandise for sale on the platform), iHeartMedia and a notable funding round: 3,000,000 items, ranging from t-shirts to private concerts, are…

  8. J. Cole Earns Third No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart

    December 17, 2014 4:34 PM EST J. Cole 's third album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive , easily debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, marking the rapper's third consecutive chart-topper. He previously led the list with his debut effort, 2011's Cole World: The Sideline Story , and its follow-up,…

  9. Op-Ed: Vine Became the New Demo Tape in 2014

    December 15, 2014 4:34 PM EST Fifteen minutes of fame shrunk by 14 minutes and 54 seconds in 2014. Thanks to the Twitter-owned video app Vine, six seconds were all that a growing number of artists needed to achieve celebrity status. In the same way YouTube took a few years to produce mainstream musical acts from…

  10. BSBB Round 2: Florida Georgia Line feat. Luke Bryan, "This Is How We Roll" vs. Ariana Grande feat. Iggy Azalea, "Problem"

    December 14, 2014 10:01 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules This Is How We Roll Florida Georgia Line feat. Luke Bryan Problem Ariana Grande feat. Iggy Azalea JAMIESON COX: I live and work in a university town, and if “number of times heard while walking by a raging kegger” was an…

  11. BSBB Round 1: Nicki Minaj, "Anaconda" vs. Sam Smith, "I'm Not The Only One"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Anaconda Nicki Minaj I'm Not The Only One Sam Smith CRAIG JENKINS: Nicki’s Pinkprint smash “Anaconda” is deadly clever, a feminist judo flip of one of rap’s most beloved sexual objectification anthems that achieves its…

  12. Hot 100 Chart Moves: Ed Sheeran Soars With Two Songs, Mariah Carey Returns

    December 12, 2014 5:56 PM EST Two Sheeran tracks surge, while Carey makes her now-annual 'Christmas' comeback. Plus, moves for Jennifer Lawrence, Lillywood & Robin Schulz and Sheppard. As previously reported , Taylor Swift 's "Blank Space" leads the Billboard Hot 100 for a fourth week, while…

  13. Live Music's $20 Billion Year: Rolling Stones, One Direction, Live Nation Top Boxscore's Year-End

    December 12, 2014 2:31 PM EST Attendance is down, but spectacular ticket sales by One Direction, The Rolling Stones and Justin Timberlake, plus a series of blockbuster stadium shows, propelled the North American concert industry to a record 2014. Boy band One Direction and former boy band member Justin Timberlake…

  14. Billboard 200 Chart Moves: Pink Floyd's 'Dark Side' Returns to Top 20

    December 11, 2014 9:59 PM EST On the latest Billboard 200 albums chart, Taylor Swift’s 1989 held firm at No. 1 for a fifth non-consecutive week, while AC/DC’s Rock or Bust debuted at No. 3. One more album arrived in the top 10: Mary J. Blige’s The London Sessions , which launched at No. 9. Mary J. Blige Earns 10th…

  15. American Country Countdown Awards: You're Invited to 'Country Music's Christmas Office Party'

    December 11, 2014 3:03 PM EST The inaugural ACCAs will air live Monday at 8 p.m. ET on Fox. The inaugural American Country Countdown Awards will take place Monday night live from Nashville's Music City Center on Fox. In a crowded landscape of country music awards shows, what will set this one apart? "We view…

  16. Taylor Swift & Christmas Crooners Rule Artist 100

    December 11, 2014 2:44 PM EST Swift reigns for an eighth week while a sleighful of artists with holiday hits soar. Taylor Swift and Christmas have long been a perfect fit (as the yuletide devotee grew up on a Christmas tree farm). On this week's Billboard Artist 100 chart, Swift and the season also pair up, as she…

  17. Taylor Swift's '1989' Spends Fifth Week at No. 1 on Billboard 200

    December 10, 2014 11:10 AM EST 0 Taylor Swift's 1989 holds steady at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 albums chart for a fifth non-consecutive week. Swift has now spent a cumulative total of 29 weeks at No. 1 with her four chart-topping albums. Among women, only Whitney Houston (with 46 weeks at No. 1) and…

  18. Australia's Gov't Starts Clock on ISPs' Anti-Piracy Code

    December 10, 2014 5:48 AM EST Australia's government has presented the country’s ISPs with a 120-day deadline to create an industry code for blocking copyright infringing content. Failure to do so means the government will develop and impose one of its own.  Federal communications minister Malcolm Turnbull and…

  19. The Year in Gospel: Lecrae Dominates, Christian Rap/Hip-Hop Policy Revised

    December 09, 2014 1:01 PM EST Jamie Grace 's long-running hit single "Beautiful Day" finishes 2014 as the year's No. 1 Hot Gospel Song . That chart-topping finish was encouraged by its handsome 20-week run at No. 1 atop the weekly multi-metric Hot Gospel Songs chart. (For good measure, the song…

  20. The Year in Christian Music: Carrie Underwood & Hillsong Triumph

    December 09, 2014 12:44 PM EST The multi-metric Hot Christian Songs survey only had two No. 1 songs all year, and they were different in almost every respect from one another -- except that they were both affirmations of the power of faith, prayer and human frailty, and they both used water as the defining theme. See…

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