Chart Beat

Fred discusses Radiohead, 'Juno,' Taylor Swift, Colbie Caillat and more!

'JUNO' AND THE PAYDIRT: Last week, I asked if the "Juno" soundtrack will be "Uno," as in No. 1 on The Billboard 200. We didn't quite get an answer this week, but we're a lot closer to finding out as the CD leaps 8-3. While the album could easily be No. 1 seven days from now, it is already "Uno" on another list - the list of the highest-charting titles in the 30-year existence of the Rhino label.

"Juno" set the record last week when it became the first top 10 album on Rhino. That allowed it to surpass the highest-ranking Rhino title to date, "Operation: Mindcrime II" by Queensryche, which peaked at No. 14 the week of April 22, 2006.

When Rhino was founded in 1978 by Richard Foos and Harold (no relation) Bronson, it was primarily a reissue/catalog label, keeping music alive that other labels were no longer interested in releasing. Among the artists who have charted on Rhino over the years: Ritchie Valens, Roy Orbison, Gordon Lightfoot, the Monkees and David Lee Roth.

Here is a summary of the five highest-charting albums on Rhino on The Billboard 200:

No. 3: "Juno," Soundtrack (2008)
No. 14: "Operation Mindcrime II," Queensryche (2006)
No. 15: "By Request," Billy Vera & the Beaters (1987)
No. 22: "Reflections: Carly Simon's Greatest Hits," Carly Simon (2004)
No. 38: "The Very Best of Chicago: Only the Beginning," Chicago (2002)


THE 'SONG' REMAINS THE SAME: For the third week in a row, Taylor Swift rewrites the chart history books. The 18-year-old singer is No. 1 on Hot Country Songs for the sixth consecutive week with "Our Song" (Big Machine), putting her in a four-way tie for second place on the list of the longest-running No. 1 songs by solo female artists in the 64-year life of this chart.

Only one song by a solo female artist has had a longer reign - Connie Smith ruled for eight weeks in 1964 with "Once a Day." That means if Swift still wears the country crown next week, she will hold second place by herself and will be one week away from equaling the all-time record. So all eyes will be on next week's country tally to see what Swift can accomplish. Meanwhile, here is the updated list of the top five No. 1 songs by solo female artists according to how long the songs remained on top:

8 weeks: "Once a Day," Connie Smith (1964)
6 weeks: "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels," Kitty Wells (1952)
6 weeks: "Breathe," Faith Hill (1999)
6 weeks: "Jesus, Take the Wheel," Carrie Underwood (2006)
6 weeks: "Our Song," Taylor Swift (2007)

It should be noted that "Our Song" is the longest-running No. 1 country hit by any artist since Carrie Underwood held sway for six weeks in January-February 2006 with "Jesus, Take the Wheel."


A TRIO OF McDONALDS: A couple of weeks ago, Universal Motown released a three-song sampler of songs from a new Michael McDonald album, due for release this spring. This week, all three songs make debuts, but on different charts.

The sampler indicated that McDonald's remake of Jackie Wilson's 1967 hit "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" was being aimed at Adult Contemporary radio. The label's aim was true, because AC radio went for the track in a big way. "Higher and Higher" is a new AC entry at No. 21, the highest debut in McDonald's solo career (besting the No. 28 opening of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" in July 2003).

The sampler also included McDonald's reworking of "Love T.K.O.," a Teddy Pendergrass hit from 1981. Marked for "Urban AC," the song does indeed debut on the Adult R&B tally, at No. 39. It is the first time McDonald has appeared on this chart.

Finally, McDonald's update of Dionne Warwick's "Walk On By" was promoted to Smooth Jazz radio. And right on target, the Burt Bacharach-Hal David composition debuts on the Smooth Jazz Singles chart at No. 29. This is McDonald's first time on this survey on his own; he previously charted as a featured artist on songs by Fourplay and Chaka Khan.

When Warwick's "Walk On By" debuted on the Hot 100 in April 1964, it was the follow-up to "Anyone Who Had a Heart." That Bacharach-David song could also be returning to the Billboard charts in the next couple of weeks, as it is the first single from Shelby Lynne's new album, "Just a Little Lovin'" (Lost Highway), a tribute to Dusty Springfield.

While "Anyone Who Had a Heart" was a hit for Warwick, Springfield covered it, just as she recorded a number of Bacharach-David tunes, like "Wishin' and Hopin'" and "I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself."

And although the year is less than three weeks old as I write this, "Just a Little Lovin'" is already a contender for my top 10 albums of 2008.


EFFERVESCENT: Colbie Caillat's "Bubbly" (Universal Republic) has not gone flat on the Adult Top 40 chart, where it is No. 1 for the 13th week. That pushes this chart-topper past Celine Dion's "Because You Loved Me" (No. 1 for 12 weeks in 1996) as the third longest-running No. 1 by a solo female artist in the history of this chart.

The only two No. 1 hits by solo female artists to lead the list longer than "Bubbly" are Avril Lavigne's "Complicated" (on top for 16 weeks in 2002) and Natalie Imbruglia's "Torn" (in first place for 14 weeks in 1998).

"Bubbly" could catch "Torn" next week and match "Complicated" two weeks after that. Meanwhile, the Caillat song is No. 1 on the Adult Contemporary chart for the third week.