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Chris Brown Bounds to Top of Billboard Artist 100

As their albums arrive, Brown narrowly rules the Artist 100 over runner-up Barbra Streisand.

Chris Brown blasts 25-1 for his first week atop the Billboard Artist 100, winning a close race over the iconic Barbra Streisand, who roars in at No. 2. Meanwhile, Tim McGraw rockets 70-10, with all three acts propelled by the arrival of new studio albums.

The Artist 100 provides the first weekly ranking dedicated to measuring artist activity across Billboard’s most influential charts, including the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, Billboard 200 albums chart and the Social 50. The Artist 100 blends data measuring album and track sales, radio airplay, streaming and social media fan interaction to provide a weekly multi-dimensional ranking of artist popularity.


R&B/hip-hop/pop star Brown vaults to the Artist 100 summit with 66 percent of his chart points (which surge by 361 percent) from album sales, as his sixth studio set X, released on RCA Records, starts at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 with 145,000 copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. With three songs from the album on the Hot 100, digital song sales (17 percent), streaming (8 percent) and radio airplay (5 percent) account for his next-greatest Artist 100 points contributors.

Barbra Streisand Debuts at No. 1 on Billboard 200, Chris Brown at No. 2

Brown narrowly claims the Artist 100’s top spot over Streisand, who wins the race to No. 1 on the Billboard 200, where her duets set Partners debuts with 196,000 sold. Unlike Brown, whose new LP is geared toward garnering widespread airplay and sales and streams for its singles, Streisand enters the Artist 100 with nearly all her chart points derived from album sales.

Hot 100 leader Meghan Trainor dips 2-3 on the Artist 100; Taylor Swift backtracks 3-4; and Maroon 5, the top act the last two weeks, tumbles to No. 5.

At the top 10’s anchor spot on the Artist 100, country cornerstone McGraw makes his first appearance in the top tier. As his album Sundown Heaven Town dawns at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 with 71,000 sold, album sales mark 82 percent of his Artist 100 points.

Fellow country titan George Strait enters the Artist 100 at No. 17, fueled by the No. 4 Billboard 200 start of his The Cowboy Rides Away: Live From AT&T Stadium. As the concert recording opens with 51,000 sold, album sales fuel 99 percent of Strait’s Artist 100 standing.

Album sales aren’t the only main driver of Artist 100 activity. Case in point: Mr. Probz parlays the budding success of his breakout dance hit “Waves” into his first appearance on the survey (No. 86). Digital song sales account for the majority (53 percent) of the Dutch artist’s chart points, with “Waves” making a 48-35 splash (32,000 downloads sold, up 20 percent) on the Digital Songs chart. Airplay follows at 28 percent, as “Waves” also gains by 20 percent in airplay to 23 million all-format audience impressions, according to Nielsen BDS.

Similarly, Milky Chance enters the Artist 100 at No. 99. With its breakthrough single “Stolen Dance” atop Alternative Songs for two weeks running (and rising 61-58 on the Hot 100), the German duo bows thanks to a mix of digital songs sale (56 percent), airplay  (26 percent) and streaming  (18 percent).

View the complete Billboard Artist 100 chart here and in the new issue of Billboard magazine (dated Oct. 4), on sale tomorrow (Sept. 26).