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Ask Billboard: Lady Gaga First Artist With Two 7-Million-Selling Downloads

"Just Dance" joins "Poker Face" in giving Gaga two songs that have each sold 7 million downloads, an honor that no one else can boast. Plus, more achievements for Taylor Swift and Justin Bieber.

As always, submit questions about Billboard charts, as well as general music musings, to Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S. Or, tweet @gthot20


Hey @gthot20! Any idea the current sales for “Just Dance”? Has it passed 7 million downloads, making @ladygaga the first to earn that honor twice?

Vivi ?@ViviLittleM

Hi Vivi,

As if she needed another, here’s another reason why Gaga makes for such a worthy recipient of the honor of Billboard‘s Woman of the Year for 2015: with “Just Dance” (featuring Colby O’Donis) having passed 7 million downloads sold, according to Nielsen Music, she is the only artist with two 7-million selling downloads. “Just Dance” (7.01 million, through the week ending Sept. 24) joined “Poker Face,” which has sold 7.25 million.

Notably, she could soon be joined by the Black Eyed Peas, as the group’s “I Gotta Feeling” has sold 8.7 million, while “Boom Boom Pow” is on the doorstep of the 7-million mark, at 6.9 million.

If we expand to songs that have sold at least 6 million downloads, Gaga and the Peas are two of seven acts with multiple such hits. The rest of the select group:

Adele (“Rolling in the Deep,” 8.4 million; “Someone Like You,” 6 million)
Eminem (“Lose Yourself,” 6.7 million; “Love the Way You Lie,” feat. Rihanna, 6.5 million)
LMFAO (“Party Rock Anthem,” feat. Lauren Bennett and GoonRock, 8.1 million; “Sexy and I Know It,” 6.4 million)
Bruno Mars (“Just the Way You Are,” 6.7 million; “Grenade,” 6.1 million)

… and … the only artist with three 6-million-selling downloads: Katy Perry (“Firework,” 7 million; “Roar,” 6.11 million; “Dark Horse,” feat. Juicy J, 6.08 million)

Meanwhile, the top five best-selling downloads, release-to-date: “I Gotta Feeling,” the Black Eyed Peas, 8.7 million; “Rolling in the Deep,” Adele, 8.4 million; “Party Rock Anthem,” LMFAO feat. Lauren Bennett and GoonRock, 8.1 million; “Somebody That I Used to Know,” Gotye feat. Kimbra, 7.9 million; “Radioactive,” Imagine Dragons, 7.8 million.

1989, 2014 & 2015

Hey Gary,

Since Taylor Swift’s 1989 has been in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 for almost a full year since its debut, I would like to know what albums have spent the most weeks in the top 10 from their starts. Did Adele’s 21? If so, any others?

Thanks in advance,
Alex Abisaad

Hi Alex,

Swift’s 1989 is now up to 48 weeks in the Billboard 200’s top 10, encompassing its entire chart run. Dating to Aug. 17, 1963, when the chart became a meld of separate mono and stereo rankings, a mere seven albums have spent that many weeks or more in the top 10 from their debut frames:

Most Weeks in Billboard 200 Top 10 From Debut:
84, Born in the U.S.A., Bruce Springsteen, July 7, 1984
78, 21, Adele, March 12, 2011
59, Falling Into You, Celine Dion, Oct. 5, 1996
52, Rumours, Fleetwood Mac, April 2, 1977
50, …Baby One More Time, Britney Spears, Jan. 30, 1999
50, Ropin’ the Wind, Garth Brooks, Sept. 28, 1991
48, 1989, Taylor Swift, Nov. 15, 2014

Pretty much all classics, right? And, of those, only two charted prior to the 1991 advent of Nielsen Music data, when only a handful of albums a year entered in the top 10, making Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. and Fleetwood Mac’s iconic Rumours especially standouts on the list above.

Meanwhile, another question on the minds of many readers this week (as well as the Billboard charts department): with Ryan Adams’ 1989 remake debuting at No. 7, a notch above Swift’s original, have other same-titled albums shared space in the top before? The answer here.


Hi Gary,

Some fun coincidences on the latest Billboard Hot 100 (dated Oct. 10):

• With Mark Ronson’s “Uptown Funk!,” featuring Bruno Mars, rebounding to No. 14 (notching a 42nd week in the top 20), that title is almost adjacent to “Downtown”: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ new song holds at No. 16. So, fittingly, “Uptown” is higher than “Downtown.”

• Elle King’s “Ex’s & Oh’s” is almost next to “Flex (Ooh Ooh Ooh)” by Rich Homie Quan. The ex-cellent songs are oh-so-close, at Nos. 30 and 32, respectively.

• And of course, with Drake’s ubiquity, it’s no surprise at there are three pairs of back-to-back Drake hits this week, including a mini-Drake Q&A: “Where Ya At” (by Future featuring Drake) ranks back-to-back with … Drake’s own correct response, “Back to Back” (at Nos. 33 and 34).

• In 2004, Beyonce notched a No. 3 Hot 100 hit with “Naughty Girl.” Now she debuts with Naughty Boy, whose “Runnin’ Lose It All,” featuring Bey and Arrow Benjamin, enters at No. 90.

• And, a back-to-(Nickel)back: We’ve now seen the title “Photograph” in the top 10 three times, thanks to Ringo Starr (No. 1, one week, 1973), Nickelback (No. 2, 2005) and now Ed Sheeran (No. 10). When it comes to the title “Photograph,” that’s good exposure.

Pablo Nelson
Oakland, California

Thanks Pablo,

As always, you provide a fun snapshot of Hot 100 action. And, as for Drake, with its 9-4 surge this week, “Hotline Bling” looks like a challenger for his first No. 1 as a lead artist (so, maybe the best he’s ever had on the Hot 100).

As previously reported, four of the Hot 100’s top 10 this week belong to Canadians: The Weeknd, Justin Bieber and Drake. Plus, five of the top 11, as Shawn Mendes rises 12-11 with “Stitches.” Speaking of Canada …


Hi Gary,

Thanks loads for noting my mention in the last “Ask Billboard” of Rick Springfield name-checking Bruce Springsteen in the former’s hit “Bruce.” Kudos, too, to reader Christopher Brisson for his connecting the dots between Shawn Mullins and Cher on the former’s “Lullaby,” another great addition to the topic of hits referencing other artists over the years.

Regarding Canadian artists, here is a trivia note for you. In 1974, a record was set for the most acts from north of the border topping the Hot 100. That year, five did:

Terry Jacks, “Seasons in the Sun”Gordon Lightfoot, “Sundown”
Paul Anka, “You’re Having My Baby”
Andy Kim, “Rock Me Gently”
Bachman-Turner Overdrive, “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet”

A footnote on Anka’s song: he recorded it with American singer Odia Coates, making it one of three instances in which a Canadian and American teamed up and hit No. 1. The other two: Canadian Celine Dion and American R. Kelly and with “I’m Your Angel” (1998-99), and Canadian Nelly Furtado and (featured) American Timbaland with “Promiscuous” (2006).

Larry Cohen
Trumbull, Connecticut

Thanks Larry. We’ll see if Canadians can close in on the mark this year, as three songs by Canadians have reigned, all in-a-row through this week: The Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face,” Bieber’s “What Do You Mean?” and The Weeknd’s “The Hills.”

And, check next week, as I’m delving more into the topic of the current Canadian invasion. A story is on the way as to whether it’s pure coincidence or if any links explain it more. (Hint: it looks like the latter.)

In fact, let’s go to Canada …


Hi Gary,

With Justin Bieber’s “What Do You Mean?” having reached No. 1 on the Hot 100, the song is the 31st No. 1 hit to ask a question.

What are all the No. 1 musical queries? Funny you should ask!

“Why,” Frankie Avalon (1960)
“Are You Lonesome To-night?,” Elvis Presley (1960)
“Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” the Shirelles (1961)
“Where Did Our Love Go,” the Supremes (1964)
“Isn’t It a Pity,” George Harrison (1970)
“How Can You Mend a Broken Heart,” Bee Gees (1971)
“Will It Go Round in Circles,” Billy Preston (1973)
“Have You Never Been Mellow,” Olivia Newton-John (1975)
“(Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song,” B.J. Thomas (1975)
“Theme From Mahogany (Do You Know Where You’re Going To),” Diana Ross (1976)
“How Deep Is Your Love,” Bee Gees (1977)
“Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?,” Rod Stewart (1979)
“Medley: Intro ‘Venus’ / Sugar Sugar / No Reply / I’ll Be Back / Drive My Car / Do You Want to Know a Secret / We Can Work It Out / I Should Have Known Better / Nowhere Man / You’re Going to Lose That Girl / Stars on 45,” Stars on 45 (1981)
“Don’t You Want Me,” Human League (1982)
“Who Can It Be Now?,” Men at Work (1982)
“What’s Love Got to Do With It,” Tina Turner (1984)“How Will I Know,” Whitney Houston (1986)
“Who’s That Girl,” Madonna (1987)
“Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” Whitney Houston (1987)
“Where Do Broken Hearts Go,” Whitney Houston (1988)
“How Am I Supposed to Live Without You,” Michael Bolton (1990)
“How Do You Talk to an Angel,” the Heights (1992)
“Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?,” Bryan Adams (1995)
“How Do U Want It,” 2Pac feat. K-Ci & JoJo (1996)
“Have You Ever?,” Brandy (1999)
“Ain’t It Funny,” Jennifer Lopez feat. Ja Rule (2002)
“Do I Make You Proud,” Taylor Hicks (2006)
“So What,” Pink (2008)
“Whatcha Say,” Jason DeRulo (2009)
“What’s My Name?,” Rihanna feat. Drake (2010)
“What Do You Mean?,” Justin Bieber (2015)

Blair Buchta 
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada 

Thanks Blair,

In addition to those 31 questions, honorable mention to 50 Cent’s “21 Questions,” featuring Nate Dogg, which ruled for four weeks in 2003.

In all, that’s great research, no question. Along with The Weeknd, Bieber, Drake, Mendes, Alessia Cara and others, you’re yet another artist making Canada proud this week.