It's Wiz Khalifa vs. Taylor Swift for No. 1 on Hot 100 Next Week
Strong first-week sales for Swift's "Bad Blood" should set the song up for a battle for the top with Khalifa's "See You Again."
Taylor Swift and her celebrity heroine friends successfully battle formidable opposition in the video for her new single, "Bad Blood." Will they also fight their way to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 next week?
Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again," featuring Charlie Puth, has topped the Hot 100 for six weeks running, but "Blood" should challenge it for the summit next week, following the premiere of the latter's video to open the Billboard Music Awards (BBMAs) Sunday, May 17. "Blood," featuring Kendrick Lamar, re-enters this week's Hot 100 (dated May 30) at No. 53.
According to industry forecasters, "Blood" could sell 300,000 to 350,000 downloads in the week ending May 24. Such strong sales, combined with expected high streaming numbers and fast-growing early airplay, should be enough for "Blood" to easily bound into the Hot 100's top 10 -- and depending on final figures, make a play for No. 1 on the Hot 100 (dated June 6).
Of course, Khalifa and Puth performed "Again" on the BBMAs as well, so its sales could also surge.
On the May 30 Hot 100, "Again" holds at No. 1 with 229,000 downloads sold, 22.9 million U.S. streams and 147 million in radio audience, according to Nielsen Music. "Blood" returns with 47,000 sold, 514,000 and 27 million in radio listenership. Of the sales for "Blood," 64 percent is owed to the new Lamar-assisted version, while almost all of the song's streams are from its official Vevo on YouTube clip. The volume for both the song's video and the corresponding remix track sales are from the few hours following the single's BBMAs video premiere, just ahead of the end of tracking week for streams and sales.
Will "Again" lead the Hot 100 again? Or will Swift and her femme fatale co-stars battle their way to No. 1? (Or will any other songs currently in the top 10 make push for the pinnacle?) Check Billboard.com next Wednesday (May 27) when the winner will be revealed. All charts, including the Hot 100, will update the following day (May 28).
Additional reporting by Silvio Pietroluongo and Keith Caulfield