Weekly Chart Notes: P!nk, 'Glee' Cast, Rick Ross

Dave Hogan

TOP = POP: The cover of Billboard's 2010 year-end issue sums up the year in music.

"Why Pop Rules," proclaims the half-page headline, in front of a champagne-toting Ke$ha, who boasts the Billboard Hot 100's No. 1 song of the year, "TiK ToK."

With this week's charts dated Dec. 25, the year closes with yet more evidence that pop was clearly the toast of music this year. Two weeks after P!nk's "Raise Your Glass" topped the Hot 100, the track rises 3-1 on Pop Songs to become her sixth No. 1 on the mainstream top 40 radio survey.

The coronation of "Raise Your Glass" on Pop Songs marks the list's 10th No. 1 this year that also crowned the all-format airplay/sales/streaming-driven Hot 100, the highest yearly total in the Pop Songs tally's 18-year history.

The sum bests the nine shared Pop Songs/Hot 100 leaders last year and continues a three-year-rise. Seven songs commanded both charts in 2008 after five did so in 2007.

"The increasingly pop-focused top 40 marketplace has made it a little easier for P!nk and Jive to climb to the top," says Jive Label Group executive VP/pop promotion Joe Riccitelli.

"Plus, P!nk and writer/producer Max Martin have become a formidable, dynamic pop duo."

Not only did 10 of the 16 Pop Songs No. 1s in 2010 lead the Hot 100, the six that did not just missed the latter chart's summit. All six peaked between Nos. 2 and 5 on the Hot 100, marking the first year since 2001 that each Pop Songs No. 1 reached the Hot 100's top five.

As the Nielsen BDS-based Pop Songs chart reflects airplay on top 40 radio, the impressive chart showings of pop artists have spurred new stations to join the format in the two largest U.S. media markets.

Listeners last year welcomed WXRK (92.3 Now) and KAMP (97.1 AMP Radio), alongside heritage pop frequencies WHTZ (Z100) and KIIS-FM (102.7), in New York and Los Angeles, respectively.

In the November Arbitron ratings, WHTZ (4.7 million) and WXRK (3.1 million) boasted New York's third- and sixth-highest monthly audiences.

"2010 was an incredible year for pop music," says Sharon Dastur, program director of WHTZ, which Friday (Dec. 10) staged its annual "Jingle Ball" concert at Madison Square Garden. This year's edition starred, among others, Katy Perry, Michael Buble (who ventured into the crowd to lead a festive sing-along of "Let It Snow") and closing act Justin Bieber.

"Unlike in years past, so many songs displayed staying power. Usually, we see a handful of titles make it to 1,000 total plays on the station. This year, numerous songs topped even 2,000 spins," says Dastur.

"The Z100 audience was very passionate for the crop of pop music this year."

WXRK operations manager Dom Theodore cites a greater "variety and balance" at the format in 2010. "History shows that hit radio is cyclical and we are at the height of the pop cycle right now where mass-appeal pop music performs best."

In Los Angeles, KIIS (4 million) and KAMP (3.5 million) ranked first and second in last month's Arbitron ratings.

"As we kicked off the decade with high unemployment rates, housing crises and war, pop music has stepped up and lifted everyone's spirits," says KIIS assistant program director/music director Julie Pilat.

"From the Black Eyed Peas and Katy Perry to Taio Cruz and Ke$ha, the biggest songs this year blended pop/dance beats with lyrics about living life, having fun and being happy."

SHOUTED OUT WITH 'GLEE': The "Glee" cast wraps a record 2010 by placing two more titles on the Hot 100.

As "Baby, It's Cold Outside" debuts at No. 57 and "Welcome Christmas" bows at No. 59, the troupe finishes the year having placed 80 titles on the chart since January, by far the most by any act in a year in the Hot 100's 52-year history.

The cast's 2010 Hot 100 haul passes the Beatles' 31 entries in 1964.

The ensemble enters its Christmas vacation - the series' next new episode is set air on Fox following the Super Bowl Feb. 7 - just four hits from matching Elvis Presley for most Hot 100 visits:

Total Hot 100 Hits, Artist
108, Elvis Presley
104, "Glee" Cast
91, James Brown
74, Ray Charles
73, Aretha Franklin

"Baby, It's Cold Outside" had appeared on the Hot 100 just once before. Ray Charles and Betty Carter's version reached No. 91 in 1962.

The "Glee" cast charts two additional songs on Adult Contemporary. "We Need a Little Christmas" rises 20-15 and "Deck the Rooftop," a trademark New Directions mash-up of "Deck the Halls" and "Up on the Housetop," starts at No. 29.

"We Need a Little Christmas," "Deck the Rooftop" and "Baby, It's Cold Outside" appear on "Glee: The Music, the Christmas Album," which climbs to a new peak (4-3) on the Billboard 200.

Last week, two remakes of Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You" arrived on Billboard charts.

Big Time Rush's version began at No. 9 on Holiday Digital Songs and Lady Antebellum's cover launched at No. 57 on Country Songs.

This week, another interpretation of the carol enters Christian Songs, as the Newsboys' remake debuts at No. 44. The song is one of three on the chart from the group's "Christmas! A Newsboys Holiday" EP, joining "Jingle Bell Rock" at No. 21 and "Winter Wonderland" (No. 47).

Carey's 1994 original "All I Want for Christmas Is You" bullets at No. 2 this week on Holiday Digital Songs and rises 23-21 on Digital Songs.

The expectant mother's "Oh Santa!" spends a second frame at No. 1 on Adult Contemporary.

THE BOSS: Rick Ross motors to his first No. 1 among 16 career entries dating to 2006 on Rap Songs, as "Aston Martin Music," featuring Drake and Chrisette Michele, rises 2-1.

The song is Drake's seventh Rap Songs No. 1 and Michele's first.

The track pays tribute to luxury British sports car manufacturer Aston Martin, the company renowned for designing vehicles showcased in multiple "James Bond" films.

COURTING SUCCESS: As Rick Ross reigns atop Rap Songs, his name appears in the lyrics of a song that debuts on another chart.

2010 No. 1 NBA draft pick John Wall is posting an array of impressive numbers in his rookie season with the Washington Wizards. The point guard has averaged 16.7 points and 8.9 assists per game in his first 15 contests.

Wall expands his budding resume with an appearance (in name only) on the Heatseekers Songs survey, where Troop 41's "Do the John Wall" shoots in at No. 20.

"You can't guard me in the paint, I'm an artist," raps the trio on the track. "See, I hustle on the floor, call me Rick Ross."

Troop 41 consists of Tristian Brown (T-Breezy), Lelynd Darkes (Lil Lee) and Dakare Wilder (Lil Inferno). The group formed five years ago in a rap music class at Ligon Middle School in Raleigh, N.C., Wall's hometown.