Shawn Mendes breaks the record for the most No. 1s among solo males in the history of Billboard‘s Adult Pop Songs radio airplay chart, as “Señorita,” with Camila Cabello, takes over atop the list (dated Oct. 12).
With the coronation of the track, released on SYCO/Island/Epic/Republic Records, Mendes earns his sixth No. 1, surpassing Ed Sheeran’s five. (Mendes is signed to Island/Republic and Cabello, to SYCO/Epic.)
Among all acts, Maroon 5 boasts the most Adult Pop Songs No. 1s, with 13, followed by P!nk, the leader among all soloists (10), Katy Perry (eight) and Taylor Swift (seven). In addition to Sheeran, Mendes also bests Adele and Nickelback, each with five No. 1s.
Cabello collects her third Adult Pop Songs leader, following “Havana,” featuring Young Thug, and follow-up “Never Be the Same,” each of which reigned for a week in 2018.
Mendes’ first five No. 1s on the chart: “Stitches,” for a week in 2016; “Treat You Better” (six, 2016); “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back” (five, 2017); “In My Blood” (one, 2018); and “If I Can’t Have You” (one, Aug. 31, 2019).
Especially notably, Mendes is not even as old as the Adult Pop Songs chart, which launched in Billboard‘s pages in March 1996 (and measures total weekly plays, as tabulated by Nielsen Music, among its reporting panel of 85 adult top 40 stations). Mendes, 21, was born on Aug. 8, 1998.
Still, programmers in the format say Mendes’ youth is, if anything, a benefit.
“I think his multi-generational appeal is why he wins,” says Sue O’Neil, program director of WTSS (Star 102.5) Buffalo, New York. “Younger girls expose his songs to their moms, who, in turn, really like them.”
“The best artists are unique,” muses the station’s music director, Rob Lucas. “They just have that something that sets them apart, and you instantly know it is them when you hear one of their songs.
“Shawn’s writing abilities allow him to take themes and subjects that some may think would normally only appeal to a younger listener, but that adults really like. At his age, taking on subjects like depression, suicide and being in the spotlight is a really tough thing to do well, and he has. I can’t wait to see where his writing goes as he gets older.”
Ultimately, “It boils down to the lyrics and feel of his music,” says Leighton Peck, KSTP (KS95) Minneapolis pd. “Fans connect with him emotionally.”
Echoes Chase Murphy, KHMX (Mix 96.5) Houston pd, in a statement that could be doubled, given Mendes’ new record-six-pack of No. 1s, “A hit is a hit is a hit.”