RADIO ACTIVE — A Weekly Chart CHRonicle (June 11, 2017)

Welcome to Radio Active, a Sunday evening report from POP! Goes The Charts that gets to the chart of the matter: all the highlights from the CHR/Top 40 chart, as published by Mediabase 24/7 and Mediabase Research. Yes, it’s the night of the Tony Awards, but a quick glance of the pop chart shows no soloists named Tony! Oh, well. I guess it’s time for me to play the leading role of chart geek in another charming production of the Radio Active report, so take your seats and let the show begin:

ZEDD OF THE CLASS: It’s another week at the top of the pop survey for DJ/producer Zedd and singer Alessia Cara, who stay in place (despite a small loss in spins) for the third week with “Stay”. Collaborations have occupied the top spot for nine weeks so far this year, and that number will continue to grow in the coming weeks! Additionally, “Stay” advances 11-10 on the Hot AC radio chart. At a very impressive 322 million streams on Spotify, this is now the most streamed song for both artists. (Cara’s previous hit, “Scars To Your Beautiful”, is just behind it at an equally massive 308 million streams.) Due to a continued lack of challengers, this will get a fourth week at #1 next Sunday, though it will get more difficult beyond that chart.

Newcomer James Arthur has the only entry in this week’s top five with “Say You Won’t Let Go”, up 6-5. It recently topped the Hot AC chart, though it looks like it’ll fall short of the top spot on the CHR/Top 40 list. No new tracks enter the top ten or top 20, as that logjam rears its ugly head once again. It’s okay, kids, we’ll get through it. I hope…

IT TAKES “2”: Just two songs debut in the top 40 on this week’s pop chart. The hot summer of Justin Bieber features continues on with “2U”, the latest release from DJ and producer David Guetta. It begins at #32, and its notable entry is due to hourly airplay on iHeartMedia stations during its release day on Friday. It hit #1 on iTunes, and currently sits at #2, sandwiched between… yes, the other two hits featuring Bieber: the remix of “Despacito” by Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee (#8 this week) and “I’m The One” by DJ Khaled and friends (#7). Just a handful of top 40 titles have replaced the words “to” and “you” with a shorter “2” and “u”, including top ten tunes by The Jets (“Rocket 2 U” – #7, 4/1-8/88 R&R) and Sinéad O’Connor (“Nothing Compares 2 U” – #1, 4/20-5/4/90 R&R).

They might be down one member, but they’re up one top 40 entry this week. Now charting with their eighth top 40 song since 2013, pop quartet Fifth Harmony is in at #40 with “Down”, featuring rapper Gucci Mane. The group’s reached the top only once, with the Ty Dolla $ign-assisted “Work From Home” (5/29-6/5/16 MB). The last girl group to make the top ten with the original lineup, lose a member and then return to the top ten (without a replacement) was The Pussycat Dolls, who charted with “Don’t Cha” (#3, 9/2/05 R&R), “Stickwitu” (#1, 1/20-27/06 R&R) and “Buttons” (#1, 8/27-9/3/06 MB) as a sextet, then charted with “When I Grow Up” (#8, 8/10-17/08 MB) as a quintet.

MEET ME IN MONTANA: On a published chart that’s a bit forgettable, we have a debuting song called “Unforgettable”. Hey, the timing isn’t always perfect. 32-year-old French Montana scores his first main-credited entry with the single, which features Swae Lee of the duo Rae Sremmurd. The Moroccan-born rapper was featured on the remixes of two minor top 40 records from earlier this decade: Jonn Hart‘s “Who Booty” (#30, 1/20 + 2/3-17/13 MB) and Chris Brown‘s “Loyal” (#40, 6/8-15 + 6/29/14 MB). It’ll likely reach the top ten on the Rhythmic chart next week, where it ranks at #11 (up from #14) currently. (The track is also up 17-13 on the Urban radio list.) Well, Montana is The Treasure State, and several formats (and global lists) have certainly found a new one.

As far as other French feats from the chart archives, we find that one other French artist made the top 40 on the CHR chart. Dancing her way up to #3 during the first week of July in 1995, Nicki French scored her one U.S. hit with a cover of Bonnie Tyler‘s chart-topper “Total Eclipse Of The Heart” (9/23-10/7/83 R&R). Of course, I have to wonder: what would a French and French duet sound like? Je ne sais pas…

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