Chart Beat

Fred discusses Beyonce, Diana Ross, American Idol and more!

'SCENE' IS BELIEVING: "Irreplaceable" (Columbia) by Beyonce holds off a powerful challenger and remains No. 1 on The Billboard Hot 100 for the eighth week, making it the longest-running chart-topper that advanced to pole position in 2006.

It is the third Beyonce single to remain No. 1 for eight weeks or longer, after "Crazy in Love" (eight weeks) and "Baby Boy" (nine weeks). As a member of Destiny's Child, Beyonce also had a No. 1 song that remained at the summit for 11 weeks: "Independent Women Part I."

The song that almost took the crown away from "Irreplaceable" is the fifth chart entry for Fall Out Boy. By debuting at No. 2, "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" (Fueled by Ramen/Island) automatically becomes the highest-ranked track of the five Fall Out Boy singles. The group's first two singles were its most successful: "Sugar, We're Goin' Down" peaked at No. 8 in September 2005 and "Dance, Dance" reached No. 9 in January 2006.

"This Ain't a Scene" also automatically becomes the highest-debuting single of 2007 and the highest debut since Taylor Hicks bowed at No. 1 the week of July 1, 2006. In the history of the Hot 100, this is only the eighth single to begin its chart life in the runner-up spot.

The other seven:

"Always Be My Baby," Mariah Carey (1996)
"Tha Crossroads," Bone Thugs-N-Harmony (1996)
"Hypnotize," the Notorious B.I.G. (1997)
"4 Seasons of Loneliness," Boyz II Men (1997)
"My All," Mariah Carey (1998)
"Flying Without Wings," Ruben Studdard (2003)
"Inside Your Heaven," Bo Bice (2005)

Fall Out Boy isn't the only act with a new entry in the top 15 this week. Corbin Bleu, one of the stars of "High School Musical," opens at No. 14 with "Push It to the Limit" (Walt Disney) from the soundtrack to the TV movie "Jump In!"

This is the first week there have been two debuts in the top 15 since June 28, 2003, when Clay Aiken entered at No. 1 with "This Is the Night" and Studdard had his No. 2 debut with "Flying Without Wings."

ALL YOU NEED IS 'LOVE': Seven months after her last new entry on The Billboard 200, Diana Ross has her highest-charting album in over 22 years. "I Love You" (Manhattan) glides onto the survey at No. 32, the best position for Ross since "Swept Away" peaked at No. 26 in November 1984.

Just counting her post-Supremes career, Ross now has an album chart span of 36 years, six months and three weeks, harking back to the July 1970 debut of the eponymously-titled LP that included "Ain't No Mountain High Enough."

Including her Supremes' years, Ross' album chart span expands to 42 years, four months and two weeks, dating back to the debut of "Where Did Our Love Go" in September 1964.

On the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, "I Love You" debuts at No. 16, Ross' best showing since the No. 7 peak of "Swept Away."

PRESENT PERFECT: Looking at the top four debuts on The Billboard 200, you could be forgiven for wondering what year it is. After the Hot Shot Debut by Diana Ross, the next three new entries are by Frank Sinatra, Al Green and America.

Sinatra opens at No. 36 with "Romance: Songs from the Heart" (Capitol). After having a break in new chart entries between 1999-2001, a new Sinatra album has entered the chart every year since then and this extends that streak for a sixth year. Sinatra has now had more charted albums in this decade than the previous one. "Romance" is his 10th album to chart in the '00s, while he had just eight charted albums in the '90s.

Al Green bows at No. 46 with "The Definitive Greatest Hits" (Hi). That is his highest rank since 1975, when "Al Green Is Love" made it to No. 28.

Then there's America, starting at No. 52 with another "H" title, "Here and Now." It's the highest spot for the duo since "View from the Ground" landed at No. 41 in 1982.

110 AND RISING: A surge in sales carries "Daughtry" (RCA) by the band named after Chris Daughtry to No. 1 on The Billboard 200. It is the 110th No. 1 for the "American Idol" franchise, counting all domestic, national charts compiled by the Billboard Information Group.

Daughtry rewrites chart history, as he becomes the first "Idol" finalist not to finish in the top two spots to have a No. 1 album on The Billboard 200. He is also the first contestant since season two to top this chart. The only other "Idol" singers to have No. 1 albums on The Billboard 200 are Kelly Clarkson, Clay Aiken and Ruben Studdard. Fantasia, Diana DeGarmo, Carrie Underwood, Bo Bice and Taylor Hicks did not reach No. 1 with any of their albums.

Daughtry also returns to No. 1 on Top Digital Albums for a second cumulative week -- topping this chart in December gave "Idol" its 108th No. 1.

The 109th No. 1 for the franchise is Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats" (Arista). After 46 weeks on Hot Country Songs, the single dips below No. 10 and is thus removed to the recurrent chart, where it debuts at No. 1.

Underwood's album, "Some Hearts," may have peaked at No. 2 on The Billboard 200, but this week it returns to No. 1 on Top Country Albums for a 21st non-consecutive week in the penthouse. That means "Some Hearts" has spent time at No. 1 in three consecutive years: 2005, 2006 and 2007.

'DAYS' OF 'CHANGE': As I write this, I've just picked up my car from the local auto dealer where I take it for its annual check-up. My route home took me past a house where the two artists who have new songs debuting on this week's Adult Contemporary chart once lived.

Coincidence? You be the judge.

Opening at No. 25 is "Change" (Curb/Reprise), the sixth chart entry for Kimberley Locke, third place finalist on season two of "American Idol." Her former roommate and former rival on the TV series, Clay Aiken, bows at No. 29 with his 14th chart entry, "A Thousand Days" (RCA).

I don't know who lives in the house now, but I wonder if they realize their connection to this week's AC tally? I could always post a copy of Chart Beat on their door and see if they figure it out. Maybe you should check your door right now, just in case it's you...

WAITE FOR IT: British rocker John Waite is just one month away from celebrating the 30th anniversary of his first appearance on a Billboard chart and it looks like he may be able to mark the occasion with his first hit on the Hot Country Songs tally.

Before he went out on his own, Waite was a member of the Babys. That rock band made its chart debut the week of March 5, 1977, with an eponymously-titled LP. Waite's first solo hit was "Missing You," which spent one week at No. 1 on the Hot 100 in September 1984.

Waite has re-recorded that chart-topper as a duet with Alison Krauss. "Missing You 2007" (Rounder) rises 43-39 on Hot Country Songs this week. While it is Waite's first country entry, it is the 14th for Krauss, and her seventh to reach the top 40 portion of the chart.

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