Taylor Swift Leads Billboard Hot 100, Ed Sheeran Soars to Top 10
Swift scores her longest career reign as 'Blank Space' rules for a fifth week, while Sheeran posts his best rank as 'Thinking Out Loud' leaps 24-6.
Taylor Swift's "Blank Space" tops the Billboard Hot 100 for a fifth week, granting the superstar her longest command among her three career No. 1s. The track also takes over atop the Radio Songs chart. Plus, Swift bestie Ed Sheeran zooms to his best Hot 100 rank, as "Thinking Out Loud" surges 24-6.
We're taking a break from our holiday shopping (translation: we haven't started yet) to do what we do each Wednesday: run down the top 10 and more on the sales/airplay/streaming-based Hot 100.
With "Space," released on Big Machine Records and promoted to radio by Republic Records, at No. 1 for a fifth frame, Swift establishes her longest Hot 100 reign. Her prior single, and second No. 1, "Shake It Off" spent four weeks on top. Swift's first leader, "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," ruled for three weeks in 2012.
"You are the reason why, right now, this is the No. 1 song in the country," Swift beamed to the crowd at New York's Madison Square Garden Friday night (Dec. 12) before she launched into "Space" at WHTZ (Z100)/iHeartMedia's annual Jingle Ball concert.
"Space" also caps an incredibly successful year for women atop the Hot 100, as previously chronicled when female soloists kept men out of the top five for a record seven straight weeks in September-November. With this week's charts dated Dec. 27, women end 2014 having topped the Hot 100 (in lead roles) for 28 of 52 weeks. In 2013, women held the top spot for only 17 weeks, which followed lead females controlling the chart for 23 weeks in 2012. This year marked the most dominant one for women in the No. 1 spot since 2011, when women held the apex for a hefty 37 frames (led by the likes of Adele, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Rihanna).
"Space" stays at No. 1 on the Hot 100 powered by its coronation on Radio Songs, where it lifts 2-1 with a 4 percent gain to 137 million in all-format audience, according to Nielsen Music. It's Swift's fourth Radio Songs leader, following "Shake" (four weeks), "I Knew You Were Trouble." (four, 2013) and "You Belong With Me" (two, 2009).
Reaching the top of Radio Songs in just its sixth week, "Space" ties Pharrell Williams' "Happy" (the No. 1 Hot 100 song of the year) for the fastest flight to No. 1 in 2014. In fact, in the past 12 years, just two songs other than "Space" and "Happy" have soared to the summit in only six weeks: Eminem's "The Monster" (featuring Rihanna) (2013) and Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" (2011).
"Space" tallies a sixth nonconsecutive week atop the Digital Songs chart with 249,000 downloads sold (down 2 percent) in the week ending Dec. 14. As on the Hot 100, Swift rewrites her longest command on Digital Songs, passing the five-week reign of "Never." "Space" also leads Streaming Songs for a fifth week, with 12.2 million U.S. streams (up 1 percent).
Helping keep "Space" atop the Hot 100: Swift sang it to open the Victoria's Secret 2014 Fashion Show, which aired on CBS on Dec. 9. She also gave 1989 track "Style" its first televised performance; the song, which had spent a week on the Hot 100 at No. 60 in the same frame that 1989 launched atop the Billboard 200 (Nov. 15), re-enters the Hot 100 at No. 76, returning to Digital Songs at No. 21 (48,000, up a whopping 261 percent). Sources tell Chart Beat that "Style" is likely to be the next radio single from 1989, after "Space" has wrapped its run.
Hozier's "Take Me to Church" holds at No. 2 on the Hot 100. The Irish singer/songwriter's debut hit tops the subscription services-based On-Demand Songs chart for a fifth week (5 million, up 11 percent) and rises 3-2 on Digital Songs (202,000, up 29 percent), 6-3 on Streaming Songs (9.4 million, up 14 percent) and 10-9 on Radio Songs (78 million, up 11 percent). On the Hot Rock Songs chart, "Church" rules for an eighth week.
Aiding Hozier's momentum: he sang "Church" on the Victoria's Secret special. Also keeping his profile high: "Church" is nominated for song of the year at the 57th annual Grammy Awards; Swift's "Shake" is up for record and song of the year.
(Despite Swift winning the battle for the Hot 100's top spot again this week, Hozier is a fan of hers, with Swift having even seen him in concert. "She's very cool, very nice, very encouraging," he says. "She's excited about new music, excited about other people's music. Very cool.")
Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk!" (featuring Bruno Mars) pushes 5-3 on the Hot 100, adding top Airplay Gainer honors. The track bumps 4-3 on Digital Songs (170,000, up 12 percent), 22-15 on Streaming Songs (6.2 million, up 18 percent) and 31-17 on Radio Songs (49 million, up 33 percent).
Meghan Trainor lands her second top five Hot 100 hit, as "Lips Are Movin" leaps 8-4. The track holds at No. 5 on Digital Songs (116,000, up 6 percent); reaches the Streaming Songs top five (8-5; 8 million, up 2 percent); and powers 36-23 on Radio Songs (44 million, up 23 percent). Meanwhile, Trainor's breakthrough hit "All About That Bass" falls 3-7. It led the Hot 100 for eight weeks and, like "Shake," is Grammy-nominated for record and song of the year.
Rounding out the Hot 100's top five, Sam Smith likewise notches his second top five Hot 100 hit, as "I'm Not the Only One" rises 7-5, led by its 9 percent increase to 91 million on Radio Songs, where it holds at No. 6. Smith reached No. 2 on the Hot 100 in August with "Stay With Me," another dual contender for record and song of the year; Smith could additionally take home Grammys for "One" and "Stay" parent set In the Lonely Hour, up for album of the year, and for best new artist.
Ed Sheeran shakes up the Hot 100's top 10, as "Thinking Out Loud" rockets 24-6 as the top Digital Gainer. It flies 15-4 on Digital Songs with a 124 percent increase to 137,000 after Sheeran sang the ballad on the Victoria's Secret extravaganza. "Loud" bounds 25-17 on Streaming Songs (6.1 million, up 35 percent) and debuts on Radio Songs at No. 45 (28 million, up 43 percent).
Upon the Hot 100 vault of "Loud," Sheeran scores his second top 10 and highest placement on the chart. Prior single "Don't" peaked at No. 9 last month.
Below Trainor's "Bass" at No. 7 on the Hot 100, Maroon 5's No. 3-peaking "Animals" falls 4-8 (and departs the No. 1 spot on Radio Songs after four weeks); Ariana Grande & The Weeknd's "Love Me Harder" rebounds 10-9 after reaching No. 7; and Swift's "Shake" dips 6-10 (having spent all of its 17 weeks on the Hot 100 in the top 10).
Visit Billboard.com tomorrow (Dec. 18), when all rankings, including the Hot 100 in its entirety and Digital Songs, Radio Songs and Streaming Songs, will refresh, as they do each Thursday.