R. City‘s “Locked Away,” featuring Adam Levine, jumps 4-1 on Billboard‘s Pop Songs radio airplay chart (dated Oct. 10). The track drew the most plays on the 170 mainstream top 40 stations monitored for the survey by Nielsen Music in the week ending Sept. 27.
The RCA Records single marks R. City’s first No. 1 on the list (with its first chart entry), as well as the first Pop Songs No. 1 for renowned writer/producer Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald’s Kemosabe imprint (for an artist signed directly to Kemosabe). “Locked Away” also grants Levine his 10th trip to the top. He’s notched eight Pop Songs No. 1s fronting Maroon 5 and one prior leader away from the band, as featured on Gym Class Heroes’ “Stereo Hearts” in 2011. (Meanwhile, Levine debuts at No. 36 on Pop Songs singing Maroon 5’s new single “Feelings.”)
While R. City — brothers Theron and Timothy Thomas — is new to Pop Songs under that billing, the siblings, from St. Thomas, crowned the chart as co-writers of Iyaz’s “Replay,” which ruled Pop Songs for three weeks in 2009-10. They’ve co-penned three other Pop Songs top 10s: Miley Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop” (No. 9, 2013), the Pussycat Dolls’ “When I Grow Up” (No. 8, 2008) and Sean Kingston’s “Take You There” (No. 5, 2008).
“‘Locked Away’ means the world to us because the story is based on our parents,” R. City recently told Billboard. “Our dad [was] locked up for five years and our mom [held things] down while he was gone, and still to this day. We’re just very happy that people are able to connect with it on different levels.”
“Locked Away” was co-produced by Dr. Luke and, notably, features a writing credit for Toni Tennille, thanks to its closeness in melody to Captain & Tennille’s 1980 Billboard Hot 100 No. 1, “Do That to Me One More Time.” R. City releases its first Kemosabe/RCA album, What Dreams Are Made Of, Oct. 9.
“We’re blessed and grateful that we’re finally getting a shot as artists,” the Thomas brothers say. “We’re living our dream.”