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Ed Sheeran still tops the singles chart
Ed Sheeran stretches his run at the top of the singles chart to eight weeks with Shape Of You. Stormzy gets the last number one album before Sheeran settles in for an extended run.

Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You gets an eighth week at the top of the singles chart. Stormzy wins a close race at the top of the albums chart.

There’s still no change at the top of the singles chart as Ed Sheeran’s Shape Of You stays at the top of the pile for an eighth week. It wasn’t even close as the release of a recording of last week’s Brit Awards performance with a guest appearance from Stormzy encouraged many people to buy the song again. Releasing new versions of songs to keep the momentum going is nothing new. Some of the longest-running chart-toppers of the 1980s benefited from regular releases of remixes. Multiple versions of Paul Hardcastle’s 19 and Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s Two Tribes can be found in my collection of 12” singles.

The Brit Awards are also responsible for the song at number two. Chainsmokers and Coldplay’s Something Just Like This soars 28 places from last week’s number 30 in its first full week on sale. It is Coldplay’s eighteenth top ten hit and Chainsmokers’ fourth.

There’s more Ed Sheeran at number three as Castle On The Hill climbs back up one place after also being performed at last week’s shindig. Rag ‘n’ Bone Man’s Human slips one place to number four. Katy Perry’s Chained To The Rhythm (yet another song performed at the O2 last week) stays at number five. Stormzy’s Big For Your Boots (guess where that was performed) jumps eleven places to number six. There will be more about him later.

In a rare setback for Ed Sheeran, How Would You Feel (Paean) slumps to number eleven after entering at number two last week. He is fallible!

This week’s highest new entry (of seven) comes from Scottish DJ and producer Calvin Harris. As per normal he does not perform alone. He is joined on Slide by Frank Ocean and Migos. As a new entry at number ten it immediately becomes Harris’s 22nd top ten hit. Ocean’s only previous appearance in the top forty singles was on No Church In The Wild (alongside the rather better-known Jay Z and Kanye West) in 2012.

Just a week after Maroon 5 entered the chart with a song called Cold, Stormzy has done the same thing at number 21. Until last week Annie Lennox was the only artist to reach the top forty with a song called Cold. Now she has some company at last. It is one of five new entries in this week’s chart from Stormzy’s new album Gang Signs and Prayer. He can also be found at number 22 with Bad Boys (featuring Ghetta and J Hus), number 25 with First Things First, number 29 with Mr. Skeng and number 30 with Cigarettes And Cush (featuring Kehlan). His earlier hit Shut Up is a re-entry at number 37.

The appearance of several tracks from the new Stormzy album in the top forty has inevitably reopened the debate over whether the qualification rules for the singles chart should be changed. The fact that these tracks are charting almost entirely due to streaming adds an extra dimension to the argument. When people chose to download individual tracks from a newly-released album it was reasonable to include these sales in the singles chart. It seems less logical to count streams of the whole album (or most of it) towards “sales” of each individual track. After all, when somebody buys an album that does not count as one sale for each individual track. Next week’s singles chart will see an even greater takeover by one artist as a certain Mr Sheeran released a new album today (Friday).

In the index to the original Guinness Books Of British Hit Singles they distinguished between different songs of the same name by assigning a letter to each new song. If the books were still being published and they used the same rule, they would be in danger of running out of letters to distinguish between different songs called Stay. The title has provided hits for Jackson Browne, The Hollies, Shakespear’s Sister, Bernard Butler and many others. This week Zedd and Alessia Cara can be added to that list as they enter at number 33. It is the fifteenth time a song of that name has made the top forty (excluding re-entries).

This week’s bumper list of new entries has led to some surprise departures. Neiked’s Sexual had been falling down the chart slowly all year. This week it crashes out of the top forty from last week’s number 23.

Nothing, however, matches the spectacular fall for Take That’s Giants. After entering at number thirteen last week it was as low as number 72 in Monday’s update and is likely to be lower still in the final reckoning. It is one of the most obvious victims of streaming’s predominance as a means of consuming music for younger people while older music fans (who now include Take That’s fan base) prefer the old-fashioned practice of actually buying the music.

Chainsmokers and Halsey just about hold on to their top forty place to gain a 31st week in the chart. It is at number forty so Chainsmokers narrowly (in terms of position if not sales) miss out on the chance to top and tail the chart in the same week.

There is a shortage of new entries in the albums chart this week and only one of them has made the top twenty. There are no prizes for guessing that the album in question is Stormzy’s Gang Signs and Prayer. The man born Michael Omari topped the chart in the early updates but only by a narrow margin. He fell behind in later updates but his publicity team waged a massive campaign on social media to try to get the album to number one. And so it has come to pass as Stormzy enters at the top of the pile with his debut album and wins the honour of the artist who will be replaced by Ed Sheeran next week. That should be Stormzy’s last mention this week.

After topping the albums chart by a large margin for the last two weeks Rag ‘n’ Bone Man faced a stronger challenge this week. In the week’s final update on Thursday he had regained top spot, but Stormzy’s social media campaign pushed him back down to number two.

With his new album out today Ed Sheeran’s last album × has already made it all the way back up to number three. His first ful studio album, +, is at number twelve.

In the week of the Oscars ceremony the Trolls soundtrack has climbed to number four. Readers may wish to insert their own joke about whether I have mentioned the right film here. Previous Oscar winner Adele is at number five with 25.

Last week’s commentary stated that rapper Future had entered the chart with his debut album. That statement wasn’t quite true. In fact, it was quite a long way from the truth as Future was his fifth album. It wasn’t even the first to reach the top forty as EVOL reached number 34 last year. Just one week later he has another new entry with his sixth album, HNDRXX at number 21. It features guest appearances from Rihanna and The Weeknd. Jimi Hendrix, whose name is almost the title of the album, was unavailable having died in 1970.

Rhiannon Giddens - presumably named after the Fleetwood Mac song - enters at number 39 with her second solo studio album Freedom Highway. Before embarking on a solo career she had enjoyed huge success (in the US Grass and Folk charts anyway) as a member of Carolina Chocolate Drops.

American musician Thundercat enters at number 37 with his third album Drunk. This is his first appearance in the UK chart as a named artist although he did contribute to Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly album. He has also worked with, inter alia, Childish Gambino, Ty Dolla $ign and Kimbra, last seen here alongside Gotye on Somebody That I Used To Know which was number one five years ago this very week. By a slightly quirky coincidence Ed Sheeran was also in the top ten that week with a song called Drunk.

Although there are very few new entries in the top forty this week, there are several re-entries, just one of them as a result of last week’s Brit Awards. David Bowie’s Blackstar (winner of British Album of the Year) is back at number 32. Emeli Sande’s Long Live the Angels is up fourteen places to number fourteen after she won Best British Solo Female.

The other re-entries are from Eminem (Curtain Call - The Hits at number 40), Train (A Girl A Bottle A Boat at 36) and Michael Ball & Alfie Boe (Together at number thirteen).
Published on: 2017-03-03 by BuzzJack.com Suedehead2 || 1444 Views
Comments (3)
 
King Rollo
3 Mar 2017 - 18:17
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Chainsmokers and Coldplay at no.2 has made me ponder how many group pairings have had top 40 hit singles. Fun Boy Three and Bananarama teamed up twice in 1982 with 'It Ain't What You Do It's The Way That You Do It' and 'Really Saying Something'. Motorhead and Girlschool combined for 'Please Don't Touch'. Run DMC and Aerosmith recorded a version of Walk This Way together.

Can anyone think of any more examples? There must be more.
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popchartfreak
3 Mar 2017 - 18:34
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Girls Aloud & Sugababes. I think. Fancy me remembering that one after you just mentioned Walk This Way?laugh.gif




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popchartfreak
3 Mar 2017 - 18:42
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Meanwhile the stormzy streaming has kept out Lana Del Ray, Jason Derulo, and Imagine Dragons from the top 40. I'd hold a grudge if it were me...

Meanwhile a ridiculous 14 Stormzy tracks inside the top 75 at least gives the chart a clear-out of songs overstaying their welcome. With Ed Sheeran's obviously even bigger invasion next big that isn't go to change, except it'll be top 40 not top 75.

I'm going to retrospectively alter all pre-streaming charts in which the whole top 12 will be Beatles records in a fantasy teen-streaming strop. Pretty much would have been guaranteed as albums were hugely expensive and The Beatles were more popular than any other band ever (and still sold bucketloads).

So there!
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