Both Beyonce and The Weeknd’s simultaneous charting songs were powered by a mix of airplay, downloads and streams, whereas Ocean’s tracks are virtually entirely supported by streams through Apple Music’s streaming service, where it was exclusively released. Individual tracks are not currently for sale (Blonde is for available as an album-only purchase via Apple’s iTunes Store).
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Another advantage for Beyonce and The Weekend was that they had official singles out at the time of their album releases. Beyonce’s “Formation” was a top 10 hit on the Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop airplay chart upon Lemonade’s arrival. Similarly, The Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face” and “The Hills” were already radio hits when Beauty Behind The Madness came out. Both acts’ singles were already charting before their sets were released, making Ocean the only artist to have 12 tracks that are all debuts on the chart.
Without an official single, very minimal airplay provides points backing Ocean’s arrivals. Only four of the charting tracks received any radio play, with “Pink + White” notching the most spins -- only 18 plays in the week ending Aug. 28 across the over 1,200 stations that report to the chart, according to Nielsen Music.
Frank Ocean’s Hot R&B Songs debuts:
No. 9, “Nikes”
No. 10, “Ivy”
No. 11, “Pink + White”
No. 13, “Solo”
No. 14, “Nights”
No. 15, “Self Control”
No. 18, “Skyline To”
No. 20, “Good Guy”
No. 21, “White Ferrari”
No. 23, “Seigfried”
No. 24, “Pretty Sweet”
No. 25, “Close To You”
Blonde’s opening track, “Nikes,” leads the list at No. 9. A psychedelic music video for the song was released the morning of Aug. 20, hours before the full album was made available on Apple Music.
The album’s “Solo (Reprise),” a 1:18 rap tune voiced by OutKast's Andre 3000, is eligible for the Hot Rap Songs chart (and other rap-specific genre charts), where it landed below the top 25 threshold.
Blonde enters the Billboard 200 with 276,000 equivalent units earned in the week ending Aug. 25, while 232,000 traditional album sales aid in its arrival on the sales-based Top R&B/Hip-Hop Album chart.