Dallas-born, Nashville-based singer-songwriter GAYLE vaults from No. 7 to No. 1 on Billboard‘s Emerging Artists chart (dated Dec. 4) to become the top emerging act in the U.S. for the first time, thanks to the 17-year-old’s breakthrough single “abcdefu.”
The song, released in August on Atlantic Records, debuts at No. 51 on the Billboard Hot 100, marking GAYLE’s first entry on the chart, with 10.3 million U.S. streams (up 109%), 116,000 in radio airplay audience (largely via breakout pop airplay) and 8,100 downloads sold (up 123%) in the Nov. 19-25 tracking week, according to MRC Data. It bounds 28-6 on Digital Song Sales and debuts on Streaming Songs at No. 33.
The song also soars 58-13 on the Billboard Global Excl. U.S. chart and 63-14 on the Billboard Global 200, with 36 million streams (up 122%) and 10,600 sold (up 128%) worldwide.
The track, which GAYLE wrote with Sara Davis and Dave Pittenger and which Ocean Park Standoff drummer Pete Nappi produced, additionally rises 9-6 on Hot Rock & Alternative Songs and 8-6 on Hot Alternative Songs.
Contributing to the song’s success are multiple versions, including “angrier,” “chill” and “nicer” (i.e., no expletives) mixes, a demo and a remix, released Nov. 19, with Royal & the Serpent. The song has also surged on TikTok, having been featured in over half a million videos on the platform.
Among other moves on Emerging Artists, Drew Jacobs debuts at No. 5 thanks to his collaborative cover of Blake Shelton’s “God’s Country” with State of Mine (which re-enters at No. 3). The hard-rock remake bows at No. 1 on Hot Hard Rock Songs and No. 73 on the Hot 100, marking the first entry on the latter list for each act, driven by 25,300 first-week downloads sold. Shelton’s original crowned Hot Country Songs for seven weeks in 2019, marking his longest-leading No. 1 (of 14 in his career), and reached No. 17 on the Hot 100.
Plus, singer-songwriter Emmy Meli debuts at No. 8 on Emerging Artists thanks to her viral hit “I Am Woman.” The song, whose chorus has soundtracked over 400,000 TikToks, starts at No. 10 on Digital Song Sales with 6,300 sold.
The Emerging Artists chart ranks the most popular developing artists of the week, using the same formula as the all-encompassing Billboard Artist 100, which measures artist activity across multiple Billboard charts, including the Hot 100, Billboard 200 and the Social 50. (The Artist 100 lists the most popular acts, overall, each week.) However, the Emerging Artists chart excludes acts that have notched a top 25 entry on either the Hot 100 or Billboard 200, as well as artists that have achieved two or more top 10s on Billboard‘s “Hot” song genre charts and/or consumption-based “Top” album genre rankings.
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