Jay Z's 'Spiritual' Debuts on Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks Chart as Beyonce's 'Freedom' Rises
Plus Ariana Grande hits No. 1, while Shawn Mendes scores the week’s highest debut.
Jay Z gains his second entry as a lead artist on the Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks chart (dated July 23) with “Spiritual,” which debuts at No. 4. (The chart began in May 2014.) The rapper distributed the track via Tidal on July 7 in response to the shooting deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, who were killed in confrontations with police officers on July 5 and 6, respectively.
Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks is a weekly ranking of the most shared and/or mentioned songs on Twitter in the U.S., ranked by the volume of shares over a seven-day period (Monday to Sunday).
“I made this song a year or so ago, I never got to finish it,” wrote Jay in a post that accompanied the track’s release. “...I’m saddened and disappointed in THIS America -- we should be further along.”
Just below “Spiritual,” Beyonce’s “Freedom,” featuring Kendrick Lamar, rallies 38-5 and earns a new peak after the superstar partly performed the song a cappella and asked for a moment of silence in respect for Sterling and Castile during a July 7 concert in Glasgow, Scotland.
Meanwhile, Ariana Grande claims her fifth No. 1 hit on the Top Tracks chart as “Into You” steps 3-1. The bubbly cut rises in the wake of its music video earning a Vevo certification on June 6 for surpassing 100 million views worldwide.
As “Into You” rises into the penthouse, the single becomes Grande’s second-straight chart-topper from her Dangerous Woman album. The title track also rang up three weeks at No. 1 earlier this year.
Plus, Shawn Mendes’ “Ruin” blasts onto the survey at No. 3, nabbing the week’s highest debut. The singer-songwriter premiered the song on July 7, before debuting the track live the following day on NBC’s Today.
Also in the tracking week, on July 5, Mendes announced the title of his second album, Illuminate, and revealed its cover art. News of the new single and album helped spark 335,000 Twitter mentions for the week ending Sept. 10, according to Next Big Sound, a 185 percent boost.
Illuminate, which will include "Ruin," is due Sept. 23. The set follows Handwritten, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in May 2015.