Bruno Mars becomes the first male act in over 13 years to take his first two charting radio singles as a lead artist to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, to be released Thursday (Dec. 30), as “Grenade” diffuses Katy Perry‘s three-week run at the top with “Firework” (1-2).
Bruno Mars Live: Billboard Tastemakers Video Series
Diddy, then-known as Puff Daddy, was the last male to take his initial pair of chart efforts as a lead to No. 1. After first appearing as a featured vocalist on Lil Kim‘s No. 18-peaking “No Time” in early 1997, Diddy followed that up later in the same year by taking his own “Can’t Hold Nobody Down,” featuring Mase, and the Faith Evans co-billed tribute to Notorious B.I.G., “I’ll Be Missing You,” featuring 112, to No. 1.
Like Diddy, Mars began his chart career as a featured act, appearing on B.o.B’s “Nothin’ On You,” which spent two weeks at No. 1 in May, and on Travie McCoy‘s No. 4-peaking “Billionaire.” His debut single as a lead, “Just the Way You Are,” followed, spending four weeks at No. 1 in October.
Video: Bruno Mars Performs “Grenade” Live for Billboard Tastemakers
“Grenade” shifts a near-record 559,000 downloads (up 212,000, the chart’s best digital gain of the week), according to Nielsen SoundScan, as the unwrapping of MP3 players and the traditional post-Christmas gift card redemption surge results in a 108% increase in overall download sales for the week. Mars’ new track tops the Digital Songs chart, a rung above Perry’s “Firework,” which moves 509,000 (up 165%). Those sums move “Grenade” and “Firework” into the Nos. 3 and 4 slots among the biggest single-week sales frames behind Flo Rida‘s “Right Round” (636,000) on the chart dated Feb 28. 2009, and Ke$ha‘s “TiK ToK,” which sold 610,000 exactly a year ago this week.
In addition to the Digital Gainer award, Mars’ “Grenade” also takes the Airplay Gainer award, improving to 89 million listener impressions (up 12%), according to Nielsen BDS, and jumping 9-6 on Radio Songs.
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Back to the Hot 100, the songs that rank at Nos. 3-5 are all former No. 1s. Ke$ha’s “We R Who We R” bounds back up 5-3, “What’s My Name?” by Rihanna featuring Drake dips 3-4 and P!nk‘s “Raise Your Glass” falls 4-5. Rihanna’s “Name” holds at No. 1 for a second week on Radio Songs with 139.5 million listener impressions.
Rapper Wiz Khalifa takes his first chart effort into the top 10 as “Black and Yellow” leaps 12-6. Right behind Khalifa at No. 7 with an identical six-spot jump is Enrique Iglesias with “Tonight (I’m Lovin’ You),” featuring Ludacris, and DJ Frank E. Iglesias has now posted back-to-back top 10 English-language tracks for the first time in his career as “Tonight” follows “I Like It” (No. 4 peak in August) into the upper tier.
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Trey Songz‘s “Bottoms Up,” featuring Nicki Minaj, hasn’t had its fill of the top 10, as it rebounds 11-8. The song has climbed into the top 10 three times during its chart run, spending a cumulative nine weeks in the region.
Closing out the top 10 are “The Time (Dirty Bit)” by the Black Eyed Peas (8-9) and Mars’ “Just the Way You Are” (6-10).
Video: The Lonely Island feat. Akon, “I Just Had Sex”
The chart’s top debut belongs to comedy troupe the Lonely Island, which enters at No. 30 with “I Just Had Sex,” featuring Akon. The song was featured in a digital-short skit on the Dec. 18 episode of “Saturday Night Live.” (Lonely Island includes “SNL” cast member Andy Samberg). In the succeeding week, the track shifted 152,000, which easily tops the Comedy Digital Songs chart. At No. 2 on that sales tally is the Lonely Island’s “I’m On a Boat” (16,000), which was the act’s previous best Hot 100 showing, having peaked at No. 56 in June 2009.