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Ask Billboard: MAGIC!’s ‘Rude’ Revives Reggae

The band's hit is the latest in a long line of reggae top 10s. Plus, Maroon 5's career sales and Father's Day music fun facts.

As always, submit your 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 questions to Gary Trust: @gthot20


Hi Gary,

I’m thinking that MAGIC! will advance to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 before too long with “Rude,” and with its fun lyrics of a determined romantic. It might even surpass “One More Night” as the reggae tune with most weeks at No. 1 (nine) … if Maroon 5 holds that record in the first place …?

(And for goodness sake, let the guy marry who he wants.)

Pablo Nelson
Oakland, California

Hi Pablo,

Just as summer starts, a new reggae hit is on the radio, making for a perfect mix of song and season.

With “Rude” up 8-7 on the Hot 100, let’s look back at some of the biggest reggae hits that have previously reached the top 10:

Johnny Nash, “I Can See Clearly Now,” No. 1 (four weeks), 1972 (and one other top 10)

Eric Clapton, “I Shot the Sheriff,” No. 1 (one week), 1974 (written by Bob Marley)

Musical Youth, “Pass the Dutchie,” No. 10, 1983

UB40, “Red Red Wine,” No. 1 (one week), 1988; “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” No. 1 (seven weeks), 1993 (and two other top 10s)

Maxi Priest, “Close to You,” No. 1 (one week), 1990 (and one other top 10; his debut hit, 1988’s No. 25-peaking cover of Cat Stevens’ “Wild World,” is much closer to his core reggae sound)

Snow, “Informer,” No. 1 (seven weeks), 1993 (a key hit in the ascent of dancehall reggae)

Inner Circle, “Bad Boys,” No. 8, 1993 (aka, the theme from Fox’s “Cops”)

Big Mountain, “Baby, I Love Your Way,” No. 6, 1994

Ini Kamoze, “Here Comes the Hotstepper,” No. 1 (two weeks), 1994

Shaggy, “It Wasn’t Me,” No. 1 (two weeks), “Angel,” No. 1 (one week), 2001 (and one other top 10)

Sean Paul, “Get Busy,” No. 1 (three weeks), 2003 (seven other top 10s, including two other No. 1s)

Other top 40 Hot 100 reggae hits (courtesy of the invaluable, encyclopedic mind of Billboard associate charts production manager Alex Vitoulis): Diana King‘s “Shy Guy” (No, 13, 1995); Mr. President‘s “Coco Jamboo” (No. 21, 1997); and Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers‘ “Tomorrow People” (No. 39, 1988); notably, reggae king Bob Marley charted just one hit as an artist on the Hot 100 (aside from his No. 1 writing credit on Clapton’s “Sheriff”): “Roots, Rock, Reggae” hit No. 51 in 1976.

Vitoulis also notes the number of rock acts that have incorporated reggae, such as the Police, with songs like “De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da” (No. 10, 1981), as well as Blondie with “The Tide Is High” (No. 1, one week, 1981). The rock/reggae fusion has continued with such bands as Sublime and 311.

MAGIC! lead singer Nasri Atweh has built a largely pure-pop resume, having co-written hits for Justin Bieber (“As Long as You Love Me”) and Pitbull (“Feel This Moment”). He told Billboard in the June 21 issue, however, that, “Four or five years ago, I want[ed] to do this Police thing. So we did this song ‘Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool,’ which is on our upcoming album [‘Don’t Kill the Magic’]. For years, everybody would say, ‘That song is crazy. You should do this style.’ I’d go, ‘I’ll never find the right musicians.’ But, I met [MAGIC! guitarist Mark Pelli] and the rest is history.”

As for Maroon 5’s “One More Night,” I wouldn’t count it as pure reggae, but reggae-influenced pop, similar to, say, Matthew Wilder‘s “Break My Stride” (No. 5, 1984) or No Doubt‘s “Underneath It All,” featuring Lady Saw (No. 3, 2002; with Wilder having produced No Doubt’s No. 23 1996 hit “Just a Girl”).

And, thus, concludes my (Jimmy) Cliff’s Notes version of reggae’s place in pop chart history.

Speaking of Maroon 5 …

As always, submit your 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 questions to Gary Trust: @gthot20


@gthot20 Hi Gary! I love seeing biggest hits lists and sales figures of artists. Can I ask for @maroon5’s? Thanks.


Hi @stellards20,

With Maroon 5’s new single, “Maps,” set for release tomorrow, it seems like a good time to update the band’s U.S. album sales and top-selling digital singles to date, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The new song previews the band’s fifth Interscope studio album, “V,” due Sept. 2.

Here are Maroon 5’s album sales:

5,149,000, “Songs About Jane” (2004)
2,379,000, “It Won’t Be Soon Before Long” (2007)
1,586,000, “Overexposed” (2012)
1,383,000, “Hands All Over” (2010)
699,000, “1.22.03.Acoustic” (EP) (2004)
136,000, “Call and Response: The Remix Album” (2008)
113,000, “Live: Friday the 13th” (2005)
20,000, “Live From Le Cabaret: In Montreal, Quebec” (2008)
10,000, “iTunes Session” (EP) (2011)

… and top singles sales:

6,451,000, “Moves Like Jagger” (feat. Christina Aguilera)
5,510,000, “Payphone” (feat. Wiz Khalifa)
4,635,000, “One More Night”
3,197,000, “She Will Be Loved”
2,923,000, “Makes Me Wonder”
2,169,000, “Daylight”
2,120,000, “This Love”
1,991,000, “Misery”
1,821,000, “Wake Up Call”
1,694,000, “Love Somebody”
1,647,000, “Won’t Go Home Without You”
1,454,000, “Sunday Morning”

1,318,000, “Harder to Breathe”
1,109,000, “If I Never See Your Face Again” (feat. Rihanna)

In addition to the release of “Maps,” Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine’s 222 Records imprint (via Interscope) will release the soundtrack to his movie “Begin Again” on July 1. Levine plays a budding pop star signed to a major label in the film, while Keira Knightly stars as his songwriting girlfriend. She’s convinced to record some of her songs with a downtrodden producer and label owner, portrayed by Mark Ruffalo.

The 12-song standard edition of the soundtrack includes three songs by Levine and five by Knightley, along with two by an artist who’s long sat in one of the coaches’ chairs alongside Levine on NBC’s’ “The Voice”: (no, not his bromantic partner, Blake Shelton) Cee Lo Green.

As always, submit your 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 questions to Gary Trust: @gthot20


Dear Gary,

Here’s something that I thought would be fun to share: just in time for Father’s Day, Samsung has conducted a Harris Poll that shows how dads are passing on their good taste in music to their kids.

A few highlights:

– Half of dads admit that their kids have helped them discover new music

– Two-thirds of dads think that they influence their children’s music taste (but only 42 percent think that their dad helped to influence their own taste in music)

– Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of dads don’t like the music that “young people” listen to these days; yet 58 percent admit that they like the music their kids play

Rock is the top genre that dads say they share with their kids at 39 percent, followed by pop (38 percent) and country (27 percent)

– Dad’s favorite way of listening to music is radio, with 41 percent reporting that they listen to satellite and AM/FM radio. That’s followed by streaming and digital music files, which tie at 18 percent

Happy Father’s Day to all the (musical) dads reading!


Sue Ellen Schaming
(on behalf of Samsung)

Hi Sue Ellen,

Thanks for the info. I know that some of my earliest musical memories involve hearing music in my father’s car, including Neil Diamond’s “Song Sung Blue” (an early favorite … I liked the strings!)

I love the influence angle, as music, like sports, can be a shared bonding experience. When I worked in radio before joining Billboard, my father would often call and (half-jokingly) request a song by his favorite artist, John Denver. Working in adult top 40 and adult alternative (and it not being the ’70s), I could never play it. But … in honor of Father’s Day, I’m happy to now!

Happy Father’s Day!