Lady Gaga returned as Billboard’s Top Dance/Electronic Artist in 2020, ending The Chainsmokers’ four-year reign. It’s Gaga’s fourth time crowning the year-end list, following her three-year stint from 2009-11.
Billboard’s year-end music recaps represent aggregated metrics for each artist, title, label and music contributor on the weekly charts dated Nov. 23, 2019, through Nov. 14, 2020. The rankings for Nielsen Music/MRC Data-based year-end recaps reflect equivalent album units, airplay, sales or streaming during the weeks that the titles appeared on a respective chart during the tracking year. Any activity registered before or after a title’s chart run isn’t considered in these rankings. That methodology detail, and the November-November time period, account for some of the difference between these lists and the calendar-year recaps that are independently compiled by Nielsen Music/MRC Data.
Gaga also concludes 2020 as the leading Top Dance/Electronic Albums Artist, taking the top two spots on the year-end Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart: Chromatica (No. 1) and The Fame (No. 2). New for 2020, Chromatica debuted on the weekly Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart at No. 1 (June 13-dated chart) and logged 22 weeks at No. 1 during the chart year, the most of any album.
Meanwhile, Gaga’s 2008 debut, The Fame, crowned as Billboard’s No. 1 dance/electronic album of the decade for the 2010s, ends 2020 at No. 2 on the Top Dance/Electronic Albums list. Fame added 10 frames to its No. 1 total on the weekly Top Dance/Electronic Albums tally in the chart year, the third-most of any album after Chromatica and The Chainsmokers’ World War Joy, which enjoyed 11 weeks at the top. That achievement helped The Chainsmokers claim the No. 2 spot on the Top Dance/Electronic Artists list.
Fame, containing Billboard Hot 100 No. 1s “Just Dance,” featuring Colby O’Donis, and “Poker Face,” now has 118 total weeks at No. 1 on the consumption-based Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart, easily the most of any album since the chart’s inception in July 2001 (The Chainsmokers’ 2017 set Memories…Do Not Open is next, with 46). Gaga’s debut album was also one of three sets to spend the entire 52-week span of the 2020 chart year in the top 10 — the others being Marshmello’s Marshmello: Fortnite Extended Set, which finishes at No. 3 on the Top Dance/Electronic Albums list, and The Chainsmokers’ Collage (EP), coming in at No. 6 on the year-end chart.
Kygo completes 2020 at No. 3 on the Top Dance/Electronic Artists chart. His Golden Hour album, released the same week as the aforementioned Chromatica, debuted at No. 2 on the weekly Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart and never left the top five. Kygo winds up at No. 5 on the final Top Dance/Electronic Albums Artists tally, with Golden also at No. 5 on the year-end Top Dance/Electronic Albums chart.
Furthermore, Kygo comes in at No. 5 on the year-end Hot Dance/Electronic Songs Artists list and joins Gaga (more on that below) in placing two songs in the cumulative Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart’s top 10: “Higher Love” with Whitney Houston (No. 9) and “Lose Somebody” with OneRepublic (No. 10).
Back to Gaga: She also completes 2020 as the No. 2 Hot Dance/Electronic Songs Artist, charting 13 tracks on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs during the chart year, all from Chromatica (only Kygo earned more chart entries with 21). Of those, Gaga tallied two No. 1s: lead single “Stupid Love” (three weeks) and her duet with Ariana Grande, “Rain on Me” (two weeks). “Rain” finishes at No. 3 on the year-end Hot Dance/Electronic Songs list, while “Stupid” scores a No. 6 finish. Gaga grabbed six top 10s during the year, including another collab, “Sour Candy,” with BLACKPINK, which peaked at No. 3 and ends at No. 16. All of Gaga’s 13 entries grace the year-end top 100 list, the most of all acts (Kygo is next with 12).
Plus, Gaga ends 2020 as the No. 1 Dance/Electronic Digital Song Sales Artist, with “Rain” finishing at No. 2 and “Stupid” at No. 4 on the year-end Dance/Electronic Digital Song Sales chart. Plus, Gaga comes in at No. 3 on the Dance/Electronic Streaming Songs Artists list, with “Rain” at No. 4 and “Stupid” at No. 15 on the year-end Dance/Electronic Streaming Songs chart.
Moving on, SAINt JHN — with a little remix help from Imanbek — rules as the No. 1 Hot Dance/Electronic Songs Artist, with his “Roses (Imanbek Remix)” reaping the top spot on the year-end Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart. The track spent 23 weeks at No. 1 on the weekly chart in 2020, the most of any song.
Additionally, with a leading 31 weeks at No. 1 during the chart year, “Roses (Imanbek Remix)” ruled the year-end Dance/Electronic Streaming Songs chart, and SAINt JHN was the No. 1 Dance/Electronic Streaming Songs Artist. Meanwhile, SAINt JHN ends as the No. 2 Dance/Electronic Digital Song Sales Artist, with “Roses (Imanbek Remix)” earning the No. 1 position on the year-end Dance/Electronic Digital Song Sales list, having enjoyed a leading 21 weeks at No. 1 during the year. Plus, SAINt JHN jumps in at No. 3 on the 2020 Dance/Mix Show Airplay Artists chart and places “Roses (Imanbek Remix)” at No. 2 on the year-end Dance/Mix Show Airplay survey.
Dua Lipa drew the No. 1 position on the year-end Dance/Mix Show Airplay Artists list, in large part due to two tracks from her Future Nostalgia album: “Don’t Start Now” and “Break My Heart.” “Don’t” spent 16 weeks at No. 1 on the weekly Dance/Mix Show Airplay chart, the most of any song (Doja Cat’s “Say So” was next, with 12), and, fittingly, finishes at No. 1 on the year-end Dance/Mix Show Airplay list. The track’s 16 weeks at the summit tied Marshmello and Bastille’s “Happier” (2018-19) and Swedish House Mafia’s “Don’t You Worry Child,” featuring John Martin (2012-13), with the second-most weeks at No. 1 since the chart’s August 2003 inception (only The Chainsmokers’ “Closer,” featuring Halsey, has more, with 20, in 2016-17). “Heart” ends 2020 at No. 6 on the Dance/Mix Show Airplay chart, having reached No. 2 and spent 18 weeks in the top 10 during the year.
Surf mesa stormed onto the scene in 2020 with “ily,” featuring Emilee, which borrowed from Frankie Valli’s 1967 Billboard Hot 100 No. 2 classic “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.” “ily” enjoyed five frames at No. 1 on the weekly Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart during the tracking year after a nearly record-setting ascent: Its 30-week climb to the top amounted to the third-longest climb to No. 1 since the chart’s January 2013 start, tying Lillywood and Robin Schulz’s “Prayer in C,” in 2014-15. Only two tracks took more weeks to make it to No. 1: Disclosure’s “Latch,” featuring Sam Smith (47 weeks, 2013-14), and Clean Bandit’s “Rather Be,” featuring Jess Glynne (37 weeks, 2014).
With that, the Seattle-based surf mesa concludes the year at No. 8 on the Top Dance/Electronic Artists chart and, notably, at No. 1 on the Top New Dance/Electronic Artists list. “ily” ends 2020 at No. 4 on the multimetric Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart, No. 5 on Dance/Mix Show Airplay, No. 6 on Dance/Electronic Digital Song Sales, and No. 8 on Dance/Electronic Streaming Songs.
Furthermore, tied at No. 2 on the Top New Dance/Electronic Artists list are Swedish producer/singer A7S and German DJ/producer Topic. The two teamed on two tracks in 2020, including “Breaking Me,” which made it to No. 3 during the year on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs, ending at No. 8.
At No. 4 on the Top New Dance/Electronic Artists chart is British DJ/producer Joel Corry, who collected a pair of top 10s on the Dance/Mix Show Airplay list during the year: “Lonely” (No. 6) and “Head & Heart,” with MNEK (No. 1, nine weeks). Corry closes 2020 at No. 8 on the Dance/Mix Show Airplay Artists chart, as “Head” heralds a No. 7 finish on the Dance/Mix Show Airplay chart.
Madonna made an impact on the dance charts once again in 2020, finishing at No. 42 on the Top Dance/Electronic Artists chart. On Feb. 22, she earned a record-extending 50th No. 1 on the Dance Club Songs chart (Rihanna follows with 33) with “I Don’t Search I Find,” only a month before the chart was forced into a coronavirus-induced hiatus. “I Don’t” joined Madonna’s three 2019 No. 1s, all from her Madame X album, including “Medellin” with Maluma, “I Rise” (for which Tracy Young’s remix won a Grammy for best remixed recording) and “Crave” with Swae Lee.
The dance club promotion, marketing and remix A&R for “I Don’t” and dozens of Madonna’s previous No. 1s on the Dance Club Songs chart were led by Orlando Puerta, who died of an upper respiratory infection on April 4. After his death, Madonna told Billboard, in part, “I am forever indebted to Orlando and he will be sorely missed.” She later paid tribute to him via the cover art for the “I Don’t” remixes, released on May 1, which read: “in memory of Orlando Puerta.”