Chart Watch: Drake Sets 10 Records on the Billboard Charts

Paul Grein
Writer
Ross Gilmore/Getty Images

Drake sets enough records on this week’s Billboard charts to fill out a top 10 list of his own. Take a look:

1. Drake’s “playlist” album, More Life, sets a new record for the most streams generated by an album’s songs in a single week. In the week ending March 23, there were 384.8 million streams of tracks from the album. The old record was held by Drake’s previous release, Views, which launched with 245.1 million song streams last May.

2. It goes without saying that More Life enters the Billboard 200 in the top spot. It’s Drake’s seventh consecutive album to debut at No. 1. All have been released since 2010. Drake leads all artists for most No. 1 albums in this decade. Justin Bieber is the runner-up, having amassed six No. 1 albums since 2010.

3. Drake also pulls ahead of Bieber as the Canadian artist with the most No. 1 albums — not just in this decade but in all of chart history. Michael Buble, Celine Dion, and Neil Young are next in line, with four No. 1 albums each. (Young’s tally includes three albums he recorded with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.)

4. Drake has 24 songs on this week’s Hot 100, breaking his own record for the most simultaneous songs on the chart. Drake had 20 songs on the Hot 100 dated May 21, 2016, the week that Views debuted at No. 1.

5. Drake also breaks his own record for the most Hot 100 debuts in a week. A total of 21 Drake songs, all from More Life, debut this week. He set the old record when 16 songs from Views debuted in the same week.

6. All 22 tracks from More Life are listed on this week’s Hot 100. That sets a new record for the most simultaneously charted singles from one album. The old record of 18 was held jointly by Views and the Weeknd’s Starboy.

7. Drake has now had 154 Hot 100 hits, which blows past Lil Wayne’s old record of 135 for the most among solo acts. Impressively, Drake has been the lead artist on 103 of his chart hits.

8. Two Drake songs debut inside the top 10 on this week’s Hot 100. “Passionfruit” debuts at No. 8. “Portland” (featuring Quavo of the hip-hop trio Migos and Travis Scott) opens at No. 9. Drake is only the second artist in Hot 100 history to debut inside the top 10 with two songs in the same week. Ed Sheeran achieved the feat in January with “Shape of You” and “Castle on the Hill.”

9. More Life moved 505K “equivalent” units this week, based on Billboard’s formula which combines streaming, traditional sales, and digital track sales. That’s the biggest one-week total since Views moved 1,039,000 copies in its first week.

10. More Life has now spawned three top 10 hits on the Hot 100. “Fake Love” reached No. 8 in February. More Life is Drake’s first album to spawn three top 10 hits. Take Care, Nothing Was the Same, and Views each spawned two top 10 hits.

Drake has released just four studio albums, so you might wonder how he can have amassed seven No. 1 albums. Welcome to the modern record world, where an album isn’t necessarily an album. Drake calls More Life a “playlist.” If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (2015) and What a Time to Be Alive (also 2015, a collabo with Future) were dubbed “mixtapes.”

Top Songs

Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” logs its ninth week at No. 1 on the Hot 100. That’s the longest run at No. 1 since the Chainsmokers’ “Closer” (featuring Halsey) had 12 weeks on top last year. “Shape of You” sold 97K copies this week, which enables it to hold at No. 1 on Top Digital Songs for the ninth week. That’s the longest run at No. 1 on that chart since “Closer” had 13 weeks on top.

“Shape of You” logs its 11th week at No. 1 on the Official U.K. Singles Chart. That’s the longest run since Drake’s “One Dance” (featuring Wizkid and Kyla) logged 15 weeks on top last year. It’s the longest run by a U.K. lead artist since Wet Wet Wet’s “Love Is All Around” had 15 weeks on top in 1994. Wet Wet Wet is from Scotland. Sheeran is from England. (I specify “lead artist” because Kyla is from the U.K.)

Sheeran’s 2015 smash “Thinking Out Loud” spent eight straight weeks at No. 2 on the Hot 100, but never reached No. 1. It got stuck behind a monster hit, Mark Ronson’s “Uptown Funk!” (featuring Bruno Mars), which logged 14 weeks at No. 1. Turnabout is fair play. This time around, Sheeran has the monster No. 1 hit and Mars is playing second fiddle. Mars’s “That’s What I Like” holds at No. 2 for the second week. Unless it moves up a notch, it will become Mars’s first single to peak at No. 2. (The song holds at No. 1 for the second week on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.)

The Zayn/Taylor Swift collabo “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever (Fifty Shades Darker)” rebounds from No. 4 to No. 3 in its 15th week. It peaked at No. 2.

Migos’ “Bad and Boujee” (featuring Lil Uzi Vert) dips from No. 3 to No. 4 in its 19th week. The song logged three weeks at No. 1.

The Weeknd’s “I Feel It Coming” (featuring Daft Punk) holds at No. 5 in its 18th week. It’s the second top five hit on which the two artists have collaborated. “Starboy” reached No. 1 in January.

Kodak Black’s “Tunnel Vision” holds at No. 6 in its fifth week.
“Something Just Like This” by the Chainsmokers and Coldplay jumps from No. 8 to No. 7 in its fifth week. The song has climbed as high as No. 5. The Chainsmokers’ other current hit, “Paris,” dips from No. 9 to No. 10 in its 10th week. The song has climbed as high as No. 6.

Two songs drop out of the top 10 this week. They are Rihanna’s “Love on the Brain” and KYLE’s “iSpy” (featuring Lil Yachty).

Ariana Grande’s “Side to Side” (featuring Nicki Minaj) tops the 1 million mark in digital sales this week. The risqué song — a “Physical” for the new millennium — reached No. 4 on the Hot 100.

Dropkick Murphys’ “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” tops the 2 million mark in digital sales this week. The song “bubbled under” the Hot 100 for a couple of weeks in 2007, but never charted. Which just goes to show you: Charting isn’t everything.

Top Albums

Ed Sheeran’s ÷ dips to No. 2 in its third week. It spent its first two weeks at No. 1. ÷ logs its third week at No. 1 on the Official U.K. Albums Chart.

Rick Ross lands his ninth consecutive top 10 album as Rather You than Me debuts at No. 3.

The soundtrack to the live-action reboot of Disney’s 1991 animated classic Beauty and the Beast dips from No. 3 to No. 4 in its second week. The album is No. 1 on Top Soundtracks for the second week. This equals the showing of the soundtrack from the original Beauty and the Beast, which was the highest-ranking soundtrack on the Billboard 200 for two weeks in early 1992. The reboot, which stars Emma Watson, was No. 1 at the box-office for the second weekend in a row. The original animated film peaked at No. 2 at the box-office.

Depeche Mode’s Spirit debuts at No. 5. It’s the band’s eighth consecutive studio album to reach the top 10, which is its entire output dating to 1990’s Violator. This is the fourth album titled Spirit to crack the top 10. It follows albums by John Denver (No. 7 in September 1976), Earth, Wind & Fire (No. 2 in October 1976) and Leona Lewis (No. 1 in April 2008).

Bruno Mars’s 24K Magic drops from No. 4 to No. 6 in its 18th week. The album has never ranked lower than No. 7. This surpasses Mars’s sophomore album, Unorthodox Jukebox, which spent its first 17 weeks in the top 10, but dropped out in its 18th week (though it later returned to the top 10 to fatten its total.) 24K Magic logged four weeks at No. 2.

The Moana soundtrack drops from No. 5 to No. 7 in its 18th week. The album peaked at No. 2.

Future’s Future drops from No. 6 to No. 8 in its fifth week. The album debuted at No. 1.

The Weeknd’s Starboy drops from No. 7 to No. 9 in its 17th week. The album spent five non-consecutive weeks at No. 1.

Migos’ Culture drops from No. 8 to No. 10 in its eighth week. The album debuted at No. 1.

Three albums drop out of the top 10 this week. Metallica’s Hardwired…to Self-Destruct dives from No. 2 to No. 19. Future’s HNDRXX drops from No. 9 to No. 12. The Trolls soundtrack drops from No. 10 to No. 13.

Pitbull’s Climate Change debuts at No. 29. It’s Pitbull’s second album with an ecologically minded title. It follows 2012’s Global Warming. I don’t know if Pitbull will ever win another Grammy, but maybe he’ll get an award from Greenpeace.

Keith Urban’s Ripcord rebounds from No. 35 to No. 30 in its 46th week. The album returns to No. 1 on Top Country Albums, displacing Josh Turner’s Deep South. This is the third week on top of the country chart for Ripcord.

Chuck Berry’s 2005 compilation The Definitive Collection enters the chart at No. 33 in the wake of his death on March 18. The album is No. 1 on Top Catalog Albums, displacing Ed Sheeran’s x.

Look for Trey Songz’s Tremaine and Mike WiLL Made-It’s Ransom 2 to be next week’s top new albums.

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