From now until New Year’s Eve, I’ll be counting down my top 100 songs of the year. Every week, I make a top 40 list, and each position gets a certain amount of points, plus, I add in some extra points for weeks at #1, which goes towards their yearly total. The survey period is from December 4, 2011 to November 25, 2012. Ties are broken by (1) peak position, then (2) weeks at peak position, and then (3) number of weeks on chart should it go that far. Somehow, we’ve made it through 80% of the chart. That was fast! Now, without further ado, let’s enter the top twenty singles of the year:
020. One Direction – One Thing (623 points) (PEAK: #5)
All you Directioners, gather ’round. Here’s the last of their four songs in the top 100, the second Stateside and third international single from their debut effort, Up All Night. Though it only rose to #5, it managed to stay on for 24 weeks, thanks in part to a small bounce from its announcement as a U.S. release. So, I’m afraid this is where leave it for this year, but no worries, pint-size pop dreamers. “Little Things” is in my weekly top 20 and still rising. Now you can go back to playing with your Niall and Zayn dolls.
019. The Script – If You Ever Come Back (659 points) (PEAK: #4)
Here’s one of the few acts left on my chart that have only ever peaked in the top ten with their single releases. Six of the seven have hit the top five, and this is, in fact, the lowest peaking of the six thus far, peaking at #4 for two weeks. The seventh single, “Six Degrees Of Separation”, is still climbing up the chart, up to #8 this past week. Two members of the band made their debut on my top 40 back in the spring of 2000 as a part of MyTown, an Irish boy band that reached that lower rungs with a ballad called “Now That I Found You”.
018. Daniel Powter – Cupid (684 points) (PEAK: #4)
No, this is not a hot Sam Cooke remake, but it’s still a good song. I was in love with his major label debut, a 2005 self-titled album, which included two #1’s on my chart, “Bad Day” and “Jimmy Gets High”. 2008’s Under The Radar launched another chart-topper, “Next Plane Home”. This was his ninth top-40 hit, which fell just short of the top spot, though it did become his seventh top five entry. Alas, it doesn’t look like a second single from the effort is happening, so it’s going to be a little bit longer before Powter makes it into the double digits, but I’m sure he’ll get there.
017. Pink – Blow Me (One Last Kiss) (684 points) (PEAK: #2)
She’s the sassy singer from Pennsylvania and it simply wouldn’t be a first single from her if she wasn’t bringing the attitude. From “There You Go” to “Stupid Girls” and “So What” to the #17 song of the year, you know she’s out for blood. Parent album The Truth About Love became the singer’s first to debut at #1 on the album chart in the States, and has been certified platinum for shipments of one million copies, her sixth studio album in a row to reach that level. “Blow” spent two weeks at #2 and as of my most recent chart, has been ranking in the top 40 for 25 weeks.
016. Owl City & Carly Rae Jepsen – Good Time (730 points) (PEAK: #1 for two weeks)
It was one of the top collaborations of the year: a feel-good summer single that gave both performers their second big national hit. Owl City first topped my chart in 2009 with “Fireflies”, which held the top spot for six weeks. This one held the top spot for two weeks in mid-September. “Time” only lasted 23 weeks in the top 40, one of the shorter runs for a chart-topping song this year, but, a #1 is a #1.
015. Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe (735 points) (PEAK: #2)
Well, well, well. Miss Jepsen strikes again with the most overused pick-up line of the year. It’s no lyrical masterpiece, but it’s easily one of the catchiest songs of the year. Jepsen made her debut on Canadian Idol in 2007, placing third, but it was Justin Bieber and his manager Scooter Braun who gave her a bigger breakout with “Maybe”. It spent four weeks at #2 on my chart, while topping the national charts in over a dozen countries, including the United States.
014. Alex Clare – Too Close (741 points) (PEAK: #7)
What’s a song that peaked so low in the top ten doing all the way up here? Well, not only did it reach its peak nearly four mouths into its chart run, but it also became the first song to peak outside of the top five and spend 30 weeks in the top 40. Also, this is his debut single. You probably recognize it from all those Internet Explorer 9 commercials over the past year. Clare’s now charted with a second single, “Up All Night”, so he likely won’t be a one-hit wonder for me, but in terms of national popularity, I can’t see how he wouldn’t be one.
013. Maroon 5 – Payphone (753 points) (PEAK: #1 for one week)
1889 marked the invention of the public payphone by William Gray, but by 2012, the Gray had turned to Maroon. Though it managed a top 30 debut on impact, the song only spent one week at #1 before falling down the chart. Perhaps they didn’t have enough change to put into the chart machine. It still managed to help their album, Overexposed, debut at #2 on the album chart.
012. Keane – Silenced By The Night (764 points) (PEAK: #1 for four weeks)
The only one thing that’s alluded this band since they made their debut back in 2004 was a #1 single. The highest they came was back in 2006, when they hit the #2 spot with “Is It Any Wonder?” Well, this year, they finally hit the peak of pop perfection for four weeks with this leadoff single from Strangeland. “Silenced” wasn’t a huge international smash, only reaching the top 40 in two countries (Belgium and The Netherlands), but as far as my chart’s concerned, it may be their biggest single ever.
011. Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) (769 points) (PEAK: #2)
Last one on the countdown for the most successful singer to come out of American Idol on my chart. This was her 18th top-40 hit, though she’s now hit the big 2-0 with her most recent entry, “Catch My Breath”. Originally billed as “What Doesn’t Kill You (Stronger)”, then swapped around for the single release, it spent four weeks at #2 on the chart and half a year on. Only one song by a solo female is left in the countdown.
It’s about to get really good tomorrow. The top ten is coming, starting off with three records that, get this — all spent the same number of weeks at #1, the same number of weeks in the top 40, and all came within three points of one another. We’ll sort out the disoriented digits and more when the chart rolls on.