Skip to main content

Motorhead’s Signature Song ‘Ace of Spades’ Makes Billboard Chart Debut

"Ace of Spades" makes four Billboard charts in the new week, chief among them Hot Rock Songs.

The Dec. 28 death of Motorhead frontman Lemmy Kilmister translates to gains for the band’s perhaps most recognizable tune, 1980’s “Ace of Spades,” which lands on multiple Billboard charts (dated Jan. 16) for the first time.

“Spades” bows at No. 12 on Hot Rock Songs (where older songs are eligible to chart if they rank in the top half of the survey and show notable gains), with the bulk of its chart points from streams, as it enters Rock Streaming Songs at No. 24 after accruing 1.8 million U.S. streams in the week ending Dec. 31, up 1,096 percent from 149,000, according to Nielsen Music.


On Hard Rock Digital Songs, “Spades” starts at No. 8 with 8,000 downloads sold, a 2,151 percent surge. (In another measure of fan interest and interaction, the song also places No. 3 on the LyricFind Global chart, which measures lyric search volume internationally.)

Lemmy Kilmister’s Memorial Service to Be Live Streamed

Additionally, Bad Magic, Motorhead’s final album with Kilmister, re-enters Hard Rock Albums, after a three-month absence, at No. 11 with a 265 percent gain to 2,000 copies sold; it debuted at No. 2 on the Sept. 19 chart (with 10,000). The set also reappears on Top Rock Albums at No. 37. Motorhead also makes its maiden appearance on the Social 50 artist chart, charging in at No. 16.

(In noting that “Spades” makes it first Billboard chart appearance, it’s key to reiterate that most of Billboard‘s rock-specific charts began long after Motorhead’s 1975 formation and early success. Hot Rock Songs, for instance, launched in 2009, followed by Hard Rock Digital Songs in 2011, Rock Streaming Songs in 2013 and LyricFind Global late last year.)

Kilmister died at age 70 in Los Angeles due to what his bandmates called an “extremely aggressive cancer.” The disease had been diagnosed only two days earlier.