Sam topped Pharrell, “Uptown Funk!” went down(town) and “Bang Bang” topped Beyonce — the first round of Billboard.com’s Hot 100 March Madness has come to a close, with some shocking results! The annual twist on the college basketball tournament bracket is now in its fourth year, and once again, we’re asking pop fans to vote for their favorite recent hits on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. The initial round of 32 has shrunk to the Sweet Sixteen, and it’s time for another round of voting.
To help choose the winner of Hot 100 March Madness 2015, check out the updated bracket of songs, and vote for your favorite tracks in the head-to-head match-ups!
The 32 original songs were the most recent hits to appear in the top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100, through the chart dated March 14, 2015. The match-ups within the bracket were decided arbitrarily, so don’t worry about any NCAA-style rankings — any of the 32 songs were given the same chance of following Britney Spears‘ “Hold It Against Me,” Will.i.am and Britney Spears’ “Scream and Shout” and Miley Cyrus‘ “Wrecking Ball” and capturing Hot 100 March Madness glory.
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Looking back at the first round of action, Meghan Trainor, Taylor Swift, Sam Smith and Maroon 5 all impressively scored multiple victories, with “Lips Are Movin'” barely squeaking by Nicki Minaj‘s “Anaconda” and “All About That Bass” striking down Jason Derulo‘s “Wiggle.” Derulo’s “Talk Dirty” also lost to Maroon 5’s “Sugar,” while “Animals” slipped by John Legend‘s “All Of Me” in the first round. And while “Blank Space” easily passed by Nico & Vinz‘s “Am I Wrong,” “Shake It Off” disposed of Bastille‘s “Pompeii,” making T-Swift two-for-two in Round 1.
The biggest surprise, by far, was that Beyonce and Jay Z‘s “Drunk In Love” got crushed by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj — “Bang Bang” earned 72 percent of the vote in the matchup. Idina Menzel‘s “Let It Go” triumphing over Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars‘ “Uptown Funk” was also a shock, and happened with less than 100 votes deciding the victory. And despite “Break Free” losing in Round 1, Grande and Iggy Azalea didn’t have a “Problem” moving into Round 2 after earning 52 percent of the vote in its matchup against Ed Sheeran‘s “Thinking Out Loud.”
In Round 2, Ellie Goulding will try to fill in “Blank Space,” Hozier faces off against Iggy and Charli, and the super-team of Kanye West, Rihanna and Paul McCartney will try to fend off Adam Levine and his Maroon 5 compadres. On Friday (Mar. 27), we’ll reveal the eight songs that won their Round 2 match-ups, and another round of voting will begin. Vote now in the match-ups below, and keep the Madness going!