The legend ends a gap of 27 years, two months and one week between Pop Airplay top 10s. He last ranked in the region on the chart dated Oct. 1, 1994, with “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” which reached No. 3. (Lipa was born the following August.)
John adds his third Pop Airplay top 10, dating to the chart’s October 1992 debut. His “The One” placed at its No. 6 high on the inaugural list.
Lipa lands her sixth Pop Airplay top 10 and first since “Levitating,” the format’s No. 1 hit for all of 2021.
Previously, The Black Eyed Peas logged the longest break between Pop Airplay top 10s: eight years and nine months from “Just Can’t Get Enough” (No. 2, 2011) to “RITMO (Bad Boys for Life),” with J Balvin (No. 8, 2020).
(Fairly comparable to John’s radio resurgence, Paul McCartney notched his first Pop Airplay top 10, the No. 6-peaking “FourFiveSeconds,” with Rihanna and Kanye West, in 2015. Before that team-up, which also reached No. 4 on the multi-metric Billboard Hot 100, McCartney had last ranked in the Hot 100’s top 10 in 1986, with “Spies Like Us,” with the chart then based on pop radio airplay and sales.)
“Top 40 thrives when it’s diverse, and listens to its audience,” Alex Tear, SiriusXM and Pandora vp of pop music and programming, told Billboard upon the Pop Airplay debut of “Cold Heart” in September. “We’re excited to have Sir Elton John back.”
In “Cold Heart,” John sings part of his 1990 Hot 100 hit “Sacrifice” and Lipa reprises his 1972 classic “Rocket Man” and his 1983 nugget “Kiss the Bride,” with John’s 1976 track “Where’s the Shoorah?” serving as the mash-up’s coda. The new blend sports co-writing and co-production by trio Pnau.
“Cold Heart” also crowns Dance/Mix Show Airplay for a seventh week and has become John’s record-extending 40th Adult Contemporary top 10 and his first Adult Pop Airplay top 10 since “Blessed” in 1996.
“Cold Heart” is on John’s collaborative album The Lockdown Sessions, which debuted as his 21st top 10 on the Billboard 200 in October.
John’s newest duet, “Merry Christmas,” with Ed Sheeran, is receiving early pop radio play and debuts at No. 13 on Adult Contemporary, where it’s John’s record-padding, and milestone, 75th entry.