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New Around the World: dhruv Draws a ‘Double Take’ With Global Debut

The highest debut on the Aug. 7-dated Billboard Global 200 and Billboard Global Excl. U.S. chart is Lil Nas X and Jack Harlow’s “Industry Baby,” at Nos. 3 and 8, respectively. It was the most streamed song in the world in the week ending July 29, with 85.1 million clicks, according to MRC Data, and its zeitgeist-capturing music video was the most-watched clip of the week with 36 million views.

And speaking of young queer men of color bursting onto the global charts, dhruv makes his first entrance on the Global Excl. U.S. chart with “Double Take,” at No. 143. The Indian-born, Singapore-raised singer-songwriter relocated to the U.S. for college and has sparingly released new songs over the past two years.

“Double Take,” released in May 2019, jumped 32% to 10.9 million streams outside the U.S. in the tracking week. It’s the song’s biggest week-to-week spike in nearly two months and follows 13 consecutive weeks of increases, its steady build accentuated by TikTok. As of Aug. 5, a 15-second clip of “Double Take” boasts 2.4 million videos on the platform, boosted by the recent trend of users cropping themselves onscreen, a nod to the song’s photography-related title.

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Among 18 global chart debuts this week, “Double Take” is the only one not released in 2021. Still, it’s not so uncommon for titles to hit the surveys long after its initial release. Boney M.’s “Rasputin” and George Washington, Jr. and Bill Withers’ “Just the Two of Us” both made internet-fueled splashes in the last 12 months, despite being 40-plus-years old. “Double Take” more closely resembles such 2010s tracks as Aurora’s “Runaway” (2015) and Måneskin’s “Beggin’ ” (2017), also with prolonged activity that have sparked recent rises on the rankings.

While “Double Take” hasn’t yet debuted on the Global 200, it is approaching. The song drew 93% of its streams this week from outside the U.S. but is growing in the U.S. at a faster pace. Streams are up 42% domestically (to 759,000), compared to 32% internationally. Of course, it’s easier to advance more notably in percentage when volume is lower, but the similarly consistent domestic gains are a sign that dhruv’s U.S. presence could catch up, as his international popularity continues to rise.