Fred Bronson reports on chart activity relating to Avril Lavigne, Tim McGraw, Sara Evans, Kimberley Locke and Barry Manilow.
'HAPPY' DAYS: Avril Lavigne is back to her winning ways on Billboard's Mainstream Top 40 chart. Her first three entries on this tally all reached pole position, but the next two failed to go all the way. This week, "My Happy Ending" gives Lavigne her fourth No. 1 on the list.
With "Ending" on top, Lavigne is in a five-way tie as the artist with the most mainstream No. 1 hits. The other four are all solo female artists as well -- Alanis Morissette, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez and Christina Aguilera.
Here is a history of Lavigne's Mainstream Top 40 chart entries:
"Complicated," No. 1 for eight weeks (2002)
"Sk8er Boi," No. 1 for one week (2002)
"I'm With You," No. 1 for four weeks (2003)
"Losing Grip," No. 17 (2003)
"Don't Tell Me," No. 9 (2004)
"My Happy Ending," No. 1 for one week to date (2004)
'OVER' LANDS: He's done well on Billboard's Hot 100, Hot Country Singles & Tracks and the Adult Contemporary charts, but Tim McGraw has never appeared on the Mainstream Top 40 chart until this week (issue dated Oct. 16, 2004).
Why is McGraw finally getting top 40 airplay? Because he's the featured artist on rapper Nelly's "Over and Over" (Curb/Derrty), which opens at No. 35. The seemingly odd pairing appears on "Suit," one of two new Nelly albums simultaneously released  last month.
HERE'S 'SUD' IN YOUR EYE: Sara Evans becomes the fourth solo female country artist to advance to No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart this year. Her "Suds in the Bucket" (RCA) moves 2-1, displacing Keith Urban's "Days Go By" after its four-week reign.
Gretchen Wilson, Reba McEntire and Terri Clark have also moved into the No. 1 spot in 2004. That represents quite a turnaround from the last half of 2002 and 2003, when no solo female artist was able to secure the lead position on the country tally.
CRAZY EIGHTS: Kimberley Locke's "8th World Wonder" (Curb) reaches a new peak position on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart. The song is finally No. 8, following the same fine tradition that found "7" by Prince peaking at No. 7 on the Hot 100, and Maroon5 peaking at No. 5 with "This Love" and "She Will Be Loved."
It should be noted that Pete Wingfield's "18 With a Bullet" was No. 18 with a bullet on the Hot 100 dated Nov. 22, 1975, even though the single went on to peak at No. 15.
'SCORES' SCORES: "Manilow Scores: Songs from Copacabana and Harmony" (Concord) is the highest-charting non-holiday studio album of new material by Barry Manilow in almost 19 years.
Debuting on The Billboard 200 at No. 47, "Scores" hits the highest mark for the artist since "Manilow" peaked at No. 42 in December 1985. A greatest hits collection, "Ultimate Manilow," debuted and peaked at No. 3 in February 2002.
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