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Why Janet Jackson Outranks Michael Among the Top 100 Artists of All Time

Michael Jackson got a head start -- so why does Janet narrowly outrank him on the list of the top-performing artists in Hot 100 history?

As part of Billboard‘s celebration of the 60th anniversary of our Hot 100 chart this week, we’re taking a deeper look at some of the biggest artists and singles in the chart’s history. Here, we revisit Janet Jackson, who finished at No. 7 in our all-time Hot 100 artist ranking. 

Michael Jackson got a head start — so why does Janet narrowly outrank him on the list of the top-performing artists in Hot 100 history? (She’s No. 7; he’s No. 8.) Michael boasts 13 No. 1s among his 30 top 10s, both higher sums than Janet’s respective totals of 10 and 27. (Michael’s numbers reflect only his solo career, not the four No. 1s, among 11 top 10s, that he earned as a member of The Jackson 5 and The Jacksons.)


But the more weeks an artist spends in the chart’s upper echelons, the better his or her all-time tally, and Janet has racked up 219 weeks in the top 10 compared with Michael’s 183. Between the two, Janet has also spent the most time at No. 1 with any single: “That’s the Way Love Goes” ruled for eight weeks in 1993, topping the career-best seven-week reigns of Michael’s “Billie Jean” in 1983 and “Black or White” in 1991 and 1992. 

This article originally appeared in the Aug 4 issue of Billboard.

Hot 100 60th Anniversary