Tag Archives: Shout

“Ready” Set Go: The U.K.’s Nearly 20-Year-Old Song At Number One

They're on the ball... now.

From on the ball to ballin’.

You’re looking at the U.K. charts wondering if The Saturdays will remain at #1 or if Justin Timberlake will reclaim the title when, suddenly, you realize that neither of them is in contention. #1 on iTunes at the moment is… PJ & Duncan AKA? What is this, 1994? Apparently so. A former top ten hit “Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble” by the duo, who are now more famously known as the hosting duo Ant & Dec, has skyrocketed back into the pop stratosphere after the duo performed the song on their weekly Saturday evening program Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway. It’s held down the #1 spot on iTunes since Sunday and has a steady lead, though it’s slipping a bit, understandably, given that the performance was a few days ago. This comes a little under twenty years since the two released their debut single as a music act. Can the two hold on to claim their very first number-one single? Here’s a look at all the notes they’ve hit so far… and what might happen come the Sunday chart update.

The duo of 37-year-olds Anthony McPartlin (PJ) and Declan Donnelly (Duncan) began on the BBC television series Byker Grove in 1990 when both were in their teens. Donnelly had joined the show the year prior, and when their story lines intertwined on the children’s show, so did their personal friendship in real life. The duo signed to Sony BMG Records in 1993 as their characters PJ & Duncan AKA, creating an album called Psyche, which is referenced in “Rhumble”. Things started out slowly for the two, missing the top 40 on their first attempt, then climbing as high as #27 with their second single, “Why Me? (Is It Justified?)” It wasn’t until the summer of 1994 that “Rhumble”, which used that famous phrase from boxing and wrestling, became the needed breakout hit for the duo, spending two weeks at #9 in August. That aforementioned parent album, released a few months later, was certified Gold and went to #5 on the strength of the song and a few other minor singles like ballad “Eternal Love” (#12) and the catchy “Our Radio Rocks” (#15, 1995).

In 1995, the two released Top Katz, which saw them began to co-write most of their material, but failed to meet the expectations of their previous era. With it came three mid-charting singles, including a 1996 remake of “(I’m Not Your) Steppin’ Stone” by The Monkees (released as simply “Stepping Stone”), which went to #11. It also became their only single to make the top 50 in Australia. The two began to easily pick up hosting gigs at this point, but they decided to make one more album in which they renamed themselves Ant & Dec to match a show name they were hosting at the time. After all, they had to shed their former image somehow. The Cult of Ant & Dec, released in the spring of 1997, yielded four more top-20 hits, including two #10 singles: the retro-tinged “Better Watch Out” and the slower “Shout”. A copyright infringement case over what would be the latest single of the album ultimately ended their steady music career, but it was soon after that the duo began popping up on shows like CD:UK and Pop Idol, and later, Britain’s Got Talent, I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! and the recently reintroduced Takeaway, just to name a few shows.

Ant & Dec last saw any chart action in 2002 when they recorded a song for the 2002 FIFA World Cup entitled “We’re On The Ball”. It became their biggest hit ever, going to #3 and spending three weeks in the top ten. (Brazil ultimately won that year and not the United Kingdom.) Despite the fact that they’ve had fourteen top-40 hits in the United Kingdom, not one has spent more than eleven weeks in the UK’s Top 75 Singles Chart and even “Rhumble” only held a spot in the top 40 for nine weeks, the most out of all their singles. Looks like they’ll at least extend that one into the double digits depending on how long it stays in the news. Hey, maybe they’ll even try one of their ballads next time. Admittedly, I sort of like those ones better. (They say they won’t ever do it again; I think they might.)

As far as audiences here in the States, we barely know who these two guys are. None of their music releases were ever released here and are still not available to buy on iTunes or stream on Spotify. They’ve rarely (if ever) been on television here: all the talent shows here have generally picked American hosts. In fact, they’re probably best known for a cameo in 2003’s Love Actually if anything. However, as someone who is generally in tune with what’s out in the U.K., I say, you go guys! We’ll see where things go from here. At sales of 46,000 copies so far this week according to the Official Charts Company, it’s a hit once again, so “let’s get ready” to celebrate.

Download “Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble” on iTunes (U.K. only.)

UPDATE: “Let’s Get Ready To Rhumble” made it to #1 on the official chart update, giving PJ & Duncan AKA their first #1 hit in the United Kingdom and their biggest hit ever. It remains at #1 on iTunes there.

What do you think about this recent chart story out of the U.K.? Do you think other acts will be able to benefit from the same exposure? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel.

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Voices Carry: Screaming and Shouting Up The Survey

Would you hold it against her?

Would you hold it against her?

Pipe down! Better yet, pipe into this. This week on the Hot 100, the collaboration between will.i.am and Britney Spears, “Scream & Shout”, rises to #6. It’s the first main-credited solo top ten hit for the leader of the Black Eyed Peas and twelfth for Spears. Question is, which word has appeared in the top ten more times before? “Scream” or “Shout”? You may be yelling at the top of your lungs when you find out. I would save your voice, however. Here they are:

THE SCREAMERS
MICHAEL & JANET JACKSON – “Scream” (#5, 1995)
One of the most hotly anticipated singles of the decade went in with a roar but bowed out pretty quickly despite two big names and a $7 million music video, which has influenced a number of other videos over the years. The song debuted on the radio during the third full week of May, with a CD single release just a week afterwards, combining in a huge #5 debut on the Hot 100 on the chart dated June 17. However, the airplay suddenly stopped building less than a month after it debuted and the single sales, though strong for a few weeks, started dropping by the end of July. The hype was just too big and it couldn’t sustain it. Both artists would hit the #1 spot on the Hot 100 after this single before Michael passed away in 2009. Janet’s last hit on a genre-specific chart was as recent as 2010.

USHER – “Scream” (#9, 2012)
This singer’s latest album, Looking 4 Myself, was one of his more polarizing to date in that it took him into a more dance and electronic direction, which alienated a lot of his Urban audience despite a few hits at the format. This was his only major mainstream hit from the album, which got to #6 on CHR radio and #9 on the Hot 100. 2013 marks the 20-year mark for Usher on the national charts, and I’m sure he’ll be around with some more big singles for years to come. (This is the most recent occurrence of the word “scream” appearing on the charts.)

THE SHOUTERS
JOEY DEE & THE STARLITERS – “Shout (Part One)” (#6, 1962)
Several months earlier, the band had a big debut #1 hit in “Peppermint Twist”, knocking out Chubby Checker‘s rereleased version of “The Twist”. This was followed by the similar “Hey, Let’s Twist”, which only got to #20. By that point, the countdown was all twisted out with a twister of songs by Billy Joe & The Checkmates, Gary U.S. Bonds, Sam Cooke and more. So, the band went in a different direction, recording this live version of the old Isley Brothers tune and shouting their way to a peak of #6. The band would continue to hit the Hot 100 through 1963.

ERNIE MARESCA – “Shout! Shout! (Knock Yourself Out)” (#6, 1962)
Though he only charted with one solo song, Maresca was very successful as a songwriter, co-writing/writing two big hits for Dion in 1961, “Runaround Sue” (#1) and “The Wanderer” (#2). He was also part of the band The Regents, who did the original version of “Barbara Ann” in 1961 (#13) before the Beach Boys made it into a top seller four years later. Maresca’s song peaked within two weeks of Dee’s; in fact, for the week of May 4, both songs were in the top ten! Dee & The Starliters fell from 6-10, while Maresca soared from 16-8. Now that’s something to shout about. He continued to write and sing until the end of the decade.

TEARS FOR FEARS – “Shout” (#1, 1985)
This English duo was just coming off a #1 hit with “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”, so expectations were high for their American followup, and it did not disappoint. “Shout” hit #1 in eight countries, including the United States, and launched parent album Songs From The Big Chair into the top spot on the Albums Chart. The group had two other top-5 hits following this, and a handful of top-40 entries, their last one being “Break It Down Again” in 1993.

(We’ve had some shouters on the air and selling big since then. The most recent top-40 appearance of it was in a rereleased version of “Twist and Shout” by The Beatles in 1986. It hit #23 after it was featured in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Shaggy also scored a CHR radio entry in 2000 with “Dance & Shout”, which sampled “Shake Your Body (Down To The Ground)” by The Jacksons. It went as high as #22 on that format chart and just missed the Hot 100.)

So, there you have it. There have been two other “Scream” titles and three other “Shout” titles besides “Scream & Shout” to make the top ten. It’s a pretty close race. Will the screamers eventually topple the shouters? Will a combination of two in “Scream & Shout” prove to be a #1 record in the next few weeks? Anything can happen in the chart game. For more music information, don’t raise your voice, just follow the blog and follow me on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel.

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