The Weeknd’s ‘Blinding Lights’ Has Topped the Radio Songs Chart For 15 Weeks: Will Grammy Voters Also Embrace It?
The Weeknd’s “Blinding Lights” tops Billboard’s Radio Songs chart for the 15th week. That means it has a good chance of landing a Grammy nomination in a marquee category. Of the first 18 songs that…
The Weeknd’s “Blinding Lights” tops Billboard’s Radio Songs chart for the 15th week. That means it has a good chance of landing a Grammy nomination in a marquee category. Of the first 18 songs that logged 12 or more weeks at No. 1 on Radio Songs, 10 went on to be nominated for Grammys for record and/or song of the year.
Moreover, all but two of the 18 songs received Grammy nomination(s) in at least one category. The two megahits that got no Grammy love: Panic! at the Disco’s “High Hopes” and Donna Lewis’ “I Love You Always Forever.”
The Radio Songs chart ranks the most-heard songs on all radio formats each week, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. It originated nearly 30 years ago, in December 1990.
Here’s a list of every song that has had at least 12 weeks at No. 1 on Radio Songs, together with the Grammy nominations and/or awards the song received. The songs are listed in descending order based on weeks at No. 1. Ties are shown in alphabetical order by song title.
1. “Iris,” Goo Goo Dolls: 18 weeks on top beginning Aug 1, 1998. This moody smash from the film City of Angels received three 1998 nods—record of the year, song of the year (for the trio’s guitarist and front-man, John Rzeznik) and best pop performance by a duo or group with vocal. The trio produced the smash with Rob Cavallo, who won the 1998 Grammy for producer of the year (non-classical).
2. “Don’t Speak,” No Doubt: 16 weeks on top beginning Dec. 7, 1996. This pop gem received two 1997 nods—song of the year and best pop performance by a duo or group with vocal. Gwen Stefani shared the songwriting nod with her older brother, Eric Stefani. “Don’t Speak” wasn’t released as a commercial single, so it wasn’t eligible for a record of the year nomination. The rules were changed the following year, which allowed “Iris” to become the first non-single in Grammy history to receive a record of the year nod. Matthew Wilder, who had a 1984 hit as an artist with “Break My Stride,” produced this smash.
3. “Girls Like You,” Maroon 5 featuring Cardi B: 16 weeks on top beginning Aug. 4, 2018. This slinky earworm topped the Radio Songs chart longer than any other collab, and longer than any other song with a hip-hop element. It received a 2018 nod for best pop duo/group performance. Cirkut and Jason Evigan produced the song and had a hand in writing it.
4. “We Belong Together,” Mariah Carey: 16 weeks on top beginning May 28, 2005. Carey’s elegant comeback ballad topped Radio Songs longer than any other hit by a female solo artist as the lead artist. “We Belong Together” won two 2005 Grammys and was nominated for two more. It won best R&B song and best female R&B vocal performance, and was nominated for record and song of the year. It was Carey’s third record of the year nod; her second song of the year nod. Carey, Jermaine Dupri and Manuel Seal produced the smash and co-wrote it with Johntá Austin. Babyface gets a name-check in this song, which interpolates lyrics from The Deele’s “Two Occasions,” which he co-wrote. The pop/R&B titan also wrote and produced two Boyz II Men hits on this list.
5. “Blinding Lights,” The Weeknd: 15 weeks on top (so far) beginning April 18, 2020. This smash has topped Radio Songs longer than any other hit by a male solo artist and longer than any other hit by an artist born outside the U.S. We’ll find out if Grammy voters are also on board when the nominations for the 63rd annual Grammy Awards are announced in December. The Weeknd was nominated for record of the year for his 2015 smash “Can’t Feel My Face,” but has yet to be nominated for song of the year. The Weeknd, Max Martin and Oscar Holter produced the smash and had a hand in writing it.
6. “Because You Loved Me,” Celine Dion: 14 weeks on top beginning April 13, 1996. Dion’s classy ballad from the film Up Close and Personal received four 1996 nominations—two for Dion and two for songwriter Diane Warren. The song brought Warren her only Grammy to date for best song written specifically for a motion picture or for television. It also brought Warren her first song of the year nod. Dion was nominated for record of the year and best female pop vocal performance. This was Dion’s second record of the year nod. She had been nominated four years earlier for another film song, “Beauty and the Beast” (and would be nominated again two years later for yet another film song, “My Heart Will Go On” from Titanic). David Foster produced “Because You Loved Me.”
7. “High Hopes,” Panic! at the Disco: 14 weeks on top beginning Dec. 1, 2018. As noted above, this song didn’t get a single Grammy nomination. Another disappointment: It’s the longest-running No. 1 on Radio Songs that didn’t reach No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It peaked at No. 4. (Nifty consolation: It ruled Hot Rock & Alternative Songs for a record 65 weeks.) Jake Sinclair, Jonas Jeberg and Jonny Coffer co-produced “High Hopes.”
8. “No One,” Alicia Keys: 14 weeks on top beginning Nov. 3, 2007. Keys’ soulful ballad won two 2007 Grammys—best R&B song and best female R&B vocal performance. Keys and Kerry “Krucial” Brothers produced the hit and co-wrote it with DJ Dirty Harry.
9. “End of the Road,” Boyz II Men: 13 weeks on top beginning Aug. 22, 1992. This ultra-romantic ballad from the film Boomerang brought Boyz II Men a 1992 Grammy for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocal. Songwriters L.A. Reid, Babyface and Daryl Simmons won for best R&B song. Those three pros also produced the smash, which helped Reid and Babyface win the 1992 award for producer of the year (non-classical).
10. “I Love You Always Forever,” Donna Lewis: 13 weeks on top beginning Aug. 24, 1996. Lewis wrote the smash and produced it with Kevin Killen. The song topped Radio Songs longer than any other debut hit, though it stalled at No. 2 on the Hot 100 for nine weeks. It got stuck behind the phenomenon that was Los Del Rio‘s “Macarena (Bayside Boys Mix).” As noted above, this was shut out in the Grammy nominations.
11. “No Scrubs,” TLC: 13 weeks on top beginning March 20, 1999. This sassy feminist statement topped the Radio Songs chart longer than any other hit by an all-female group. The smash won a 1999 Grammy for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocal and was nominated for record of the year. It was the trio’s second record of the year nod; TLC had been nominated for 1995’s “Waterfalls.” The song’s writers Kevin “She’kspere” Briggs, Kandi Burruss and Tameka Cottle won best R&B song. Briggs also produced the smash.
12. “One Sweet Day,” Mariah Carey/Boyz II Men: 13 weeks on top beginning Dec. 9, 1995. Carey and Boyz II Men are the only acts with multiple songs on this list. (Boyz II Men has three; Carey has two.) So it stands to reason that when they came together, radio couldn’t resist. Carey and Walter Afanasieff produced the smash and co-wrote it with Boyz II Men. “One Sweet Day” received two Grammy nominations — record of the year and best pop collaboration with vocals.
13. “The Sign,” Ace of Base: 13 weeks on top beginning Feb. 26, 1994. The Swedish quartet received three 1994 nods, but no wins. “The Sign” was nominated for best pop performance by a duo or group with vocal. Ace of Base was nominated for best new artist. The quartet’s Jonas Berggren (Joker) wrote and co-produced the smash.
14. “Dilemma,” Nelly featuring Kelly Rowland: 12 weeks on top beginning Aug. 17, 2002. This collab led Radio Songs longer than any of Rowland’s hits with Destiny’s Child and longer than any of the many solo hits by Rowland’s Destiny’s Child colleague Beyoncé, whose longest-lasting Radio Songs No. 1, “Irreplaceable,” logged 11 weeks on top. “Dilemma” won a 2002 Grammy for best rap/sung collaboration and was nominated for record of the year. It was Rowland’s second record of the year nod. Destiny’s Child’s “Say My Name” was a 2000 nominee in that category. Antoine “Bam” Macon co-wrote and co-produced the smash.
15. “I’ll Make Love to You,” Boyz II Men: 12 weeks on top beginning Sept. 10, 1994. Babyface single-handedly wrote and produced this smash. The recording brought Boyz II Men a 1994 Grammy for best performance by a duo or group with vocal and their first record of the year nod. It also brought Babyface a Grammy for best rhythm & blues song.
16. “Shape of You,” Ed Sheeran: 12 weeks on top beginning Feb. 25, 2017. Sheeran won a 2017 Grammy for best pop solo performance for this smash. The song shares elements with “No Scrubs,” which led to the writers of that TLC smash being given a co-writing credit on this hit. Sheeran and Steve Mac produced this smash and co-wrote it with Johnny McDaid.
17. “Uptown Funk!,” Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars: 12 weeks on top beginning Feb. 7, 2015. This retro-sounding smash won two 2015 Grammys — record of the year and best pop duo/group performance. It was Ronson’s second record of the year victory. He won the 2007 award for producing Amy Winehouse’s “Rehab.” It was the first of two record of the year wins for Mars, who repeated two years later with “24K Magic.” Ronson, Mars and Jeff Bhasker produced this smash and had a hand in writing it. This smash helped Bhasker win the 2015 award for producer of the year (non-classical). Hat tip to pop-culture icon Michelle Pfeiffer, who had a name check in this smash and was the star of the film that spawned “Because You Loved Me.”
18. “We Found Love,” Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris: 12 weeks on top beginning Dec. 3, 2011. Harris single-handedly wrote and produced this smash, which was his debut hit. The single was released just eight days before the close of the 2011 eligibility year, so it’s not really surprising it wasn’t nominated. The video won a Grammy the following year for best short-form music video, which kept the song off the list of Grammy snubs.
19. “Yeah!,” Usher featuring Lil Jon & Ludacris: 12 weeks on top beginning Feb. 28, 2004. This is the longest-running No. 1 on Radio Songs that had three billed collaborators. (Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” featuring T.I. and Pharrell, is runner-up, with 11 weeks on top.). “Yeah!” and “Uptown Funk!” are the longest-running Radio Songs leaders with exclamation points in their titles. This supremely funky hit won a 2004 Grammy for best rap/sung collaboration and was nominated for record of the year and best R&B song. Lil Jon produced and co-wrote this smash.