The Top 40 Got More Popular in 2010
— The top 40 tracks continue to grab an even bigger share of the top 200 tracks, according to Billboard analysis of Nielsen SoundScan data. In 2010, the top 40 accounted for 43.5% of the top 200’s sales, up slightly from 43.2% in 2009 and far higher than the 40.9% achieved in 2007.
Higher up the ranks, the top songs had a lower share than in 2009 but were still higher than in the prior two years. The top 10 had a 14.8% share in 2010, down from 2009’s 15.7% share but ahead of 2007’s 14.0% and 2008’s 14.1%. The top 20 had a similar trend: 26% in 2010, down from 26.4% in 2009 but well ahead of 2007’s 24.7%. The same goes for the top 30.
Train’s “Hey Soul Sister” was the top track of 2010 with sales of 4.25 million units. That song was followed by Taio Cruz’s “Dynamite” (4.08 million), Katy Perry’s “California Gurls” (4.03 million units) and Usher’s “OMG” (3.67 million).
Black Eyed Peas had the top two digital tracks of 2009: “Boom Boom Pow” (4.66 million) and “I Gotta Feeling” (4.39 million). Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” was third (4.14 million) and Flo Rida’s “Right Round” was fourth (4.11 million).
The top songs are also taking a larger share of total track sales. In 2010 the top 10 grabbed 2.99% of all track sales, up from 2.9% in 2009, 2.43% in 2008 and 2.39% in 2007. The top 40 showed the same trend: 8.8% in 2010, 8.0% in 2009, 7.2% in 2008 and 7.0% in 2007.
What does it all mean? Well, it means the most popular songs are becoming more and more popular relative to other songs. The biggest hits are becoming even bigger.
Aside from the extraordinary shares commanded by top songs in 2009, the trend has continued without a hiccup since iTunes started selling tracks in mid-2003. If you compare the unit sales for each of the top 200, each rank sold more tracks than the same rank sold in 2009. So 2010’s No. 10 sold more than 2009’s No. 10, 2010’s No. 100 sold more than 2009’s No. 100 and so on.
In fact, that hiccup in 2009 is related only to ranks No. 1 through No. 4. Those ranks sold worse in 2010 than in 2009. The No. 1 rank sold 411,000 fewer tracks in 2010 while the No. 4 rank sold 439,000 fewer tracks. Other than those four ranks, the top 40 had a great year in 2010.
Sonos Adds Sirius XM To Its Arsenal
— Sonos, the wireless multi-room system, has added support for Sirius XM Radio. Sonos now supports a wide range of music services, from on-demand services (Rdio, Rhapsody, Napster, Spotify in some markets) to Internet radio (Pandora, iheartrdio) to download stores (Amazon MP3, eMusic, Zune Marketplace).
Sonos secured $25 million of funding from Index Ventures in March 2010. The company has raised a total of $65 million, mainly from BV Capital and angel investors — since launching in 2003, CEO John MacFardland told AllThingsD last year. That funding was going to be used to expand into new markets — only 35% of the company’s business comes from the U.S. (Sonos)
Cinram Acquires 1K Studios Towards Digital Expansion
— Cinram International has acquired Los Angeles-based 1K Studios, a digital distributor of major film studio content. The deal gives Toronto-based Cinram, a manufacturer of physical media, a new way to offer digital services to its clients. 1K Studios is also involved with music — it creates products in Apple’s iTunes Extras and LP formats — as well as mobile and iPad.
The acquisition comes as the company is remaking itself. In late 2010, Cinram announced it had launched a new positioning aimed to change the company’s look and approach. Along with a new logo and tagline (“Delivering excitement”) came a new emphasis on “developing new products to meet changing consumer preferences.” (Variety)