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Three Lions back at number one after 20 years
Three Lions by Baddiel, Skinner and the Lightning Seeds returns to the top of the singles chart after a gap of twenty years.

Three Lions rides on the crest of a wave of football mania to climb to number one. Drake gets a second week atop the albums chart.

In more than sixty years of UK singles chart history there have been very few songs that have reached number one for the same artist on two completely separate occasions. The most obvious reason for a song to do that has been the death of an artist as happened with Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody and George Harrison’s My Sweet Lord. In 2005, fearing that his songs were about to go out of copyright thereby depriving them of a safe revenue stream, Elvis Presley’s record company re-issued a string of his singles. Two of them - I Got Stung / One Night and Jailhouse Rock topped the chart for a second time.

As noted here last week Three Lions (note the title, it is not called Football’s Coming Home) by David Baddiel, Frank Skinner and The Lightning Seeds went to the top of the chart twice in its original chart run in 1996. A slightly revised version then reached number one two years later to coincide with the World Cup in France. While the Official Charts Company (OCC) list those two versions separately, sales have been combined to give a total of around 1.6 million. It is arguable that the two different versions are more similar than pairs of remixes of others songs whose sales have been combined, making the OCC’s decision a logical one.

Last weekend the England men’s football team reached the semi-final of a major tournament for the first time since those European Championships of 1996. (For the record, the women’s team reached the World Cup semi-final in 2015.) Sales and streams of Three Lions had already picked up after encouraging performances by the team in earlier matches; the quarter-final win sent them higher still. Even defeat to Croatia on Wednesday night didn’t lead to the expected slump in sales. At the time of writing (Friday afternoon) it is still top of the iTunes chart.

If we follow the OCC’s logic regarding sales, Three Lions, by climbing 23 places from last week’s number 24, becomes the first song in chart history to hit the top on four occasions (twice in 1996, once in 1998 and now in 2018) by the same performers and also the first to do so in three separate chart runs.

This renewed success comes despite the new chart rules which means that its streams are only half as valuable as those of its rivals (see last week’s commentary for details). If its streams had been given the same value (or if England had won on Wednesday) its lead at the top would have been a lot larger.

After two weeks at number one George Ezra’s Shotgun slips to number two. As he encouraged his fans to buy Three Lions this week I don’t think he’ll be too bothered. Clean Bandit and Demi Lovato stay at number three with Solo.

When the Official Charts Company implemented a rule limiting to three the number of songs by a single artist that could be in the top 100 at any one time, seasoned chart-watchers anticipated some decidedly odd chart runs. It was inevitable that the top three songs from a newly-released album would change from week to week. That has duly happened this week with Drake’s album Scorpion.

Last week’s top three songs from the album were Don’t Matter To Me (number two), Nonstop (four) and Emotionless (five). Don’t Matter To Me (featuring Michael Jackson) is now the second most popular track of his, falling three places to number five. The new front-runner this week is In My Feelings which enters at number four. Nonstop slumps to number fifteen while Emotionless drops out of the chart altogether. If it doesn’t return it will become the least successful top five hit (measured by chart run) in history.

Au/Ra looks like something from a school chemistry lesson but is actually the name of an Ibiza-born and Antigua-raised singer-songwriter. Her claimed influences range from Arctic Monkeys to Lana Del Rey via Kraftwerk. She makes her top forty debut this week with Panic Room at number 39. She is joined by CamelPhat who had a hit with Cola last year,

The weird names continue with Croydonian ZieZie who enters at number 38 with Fine Girl. Croydon’s other cultural contribution to the week was the habit of throwing pints of beer into the air when England score, a habit followed by big-screen watchers throughout the country by Wednesday.

Green Day wrote the song American Idiot with President George W Bush in mind. Nevertheless, when the dates for a visit by the current American president, Donald Trump, was announced, a campaign got underway to get the song back in the chart to welcome him here. As with Three Lions its chances have been hampered by its reduced streaming ratio. The song was originally a number three hit in 2004 and it re-enters this week at number 25.

Rudimental, Jess Glynne and Macklemore’s former number one These Days re-enters at number 40 three weeks after dropping out. After dropping to number forty last week Cheat Codes and Little Mix do an about-turn and climb to a new pea of number 28 with Only You.

Drake’s Scorpion album gets a second week at number one. It is only the second new number one of the year to extend its run at the top beyond seven days. The other one is, of course, The Greatest Showman soundtrack. That climbs back up one place to number two.

There are just two brand new entries in the top forty albums this week, plus one album that climbs into the top forty for the first time. The higher of the two is Palo Santo, the second album from Years & Years. The band made their chart debut with the single Desire and followed that with the number one King. In summer 2015 they had another top two single and a number one album with Communion. Almost exactly three years later they might have hoped for a second chart-topping album. Sadly for them Palo Santo can only enter at number three. The title is Spanish for Holy Stick; make of that what you will. Their current single, If You’re Over Me, climbs three places to number six this week.

Singer-songwriter Tom Grennan chose to mark the release of his debut album by playing ten gigs in twelve hours in venues ranging from Manchester to Marlborough. In doing so he set a new world record (not to be confused with the ELO album of that name). In his younger years he had a trial at Northampton Town, giving him something in common with former Dr Who actor Matt Smith. When that didn’t work out he embarked on a music career, eventually swapping football matches for an album called Lighting Matches (sorry). He has yet to have a major hit single despite Found What I’ve Been Looking For getting significant radio airplay. His current singles chart career comprises two number 65 hits as a featured artist. The album does rather better as a new entry at number five.

Later in the summer the film Mamma Mia 2 will be coming to cinemas. The original film was based on a stage musical of the same name. The original cast recording from that musical missed the top forty in 1999 but eventually reached number twelve in 2008 when the film was released. Now, rather belatedly, the film soundtrack has been made available and, after hovering outside the top forty for a couple weeks, enters at number seventeen. I’m sure Messrs Andersson and Ulvaeus will be glad of the extra money.

As ever, several of last week’s new entries have dropped straight out of the top forty. In the absence of new entries that means they have been replaced by a string of re-entries. Three of them are among the best-selling albums of all-time in the UK. Queen’s Greatest Hits is back at number 35, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours is at 37 and Oasis’s (What’s The Story) Morning Glory returns at number 38. They are joined by Post Malone’s Stoney at number 36, David Bowie’s Legacy at 39 and Taylor Swift’s Reputation at 40.
Published on: 2018-07-13 by BuzzJack.com Suedehead2 || 16797 Views
Comments (8)
 
KingOfRolloween
13 Jul 2018 - 17:00
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It's tricky considering where Band Aid fit in. Do They Know It's Christmas has reached number 1 in three separate chart runs but each time it's a new recording by a different line-up. Do the second and third recordings count as cover versions?
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Suedehead2
13 Jul 2018 - 17:33
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Do They Know It's Christmas has been number one four times (1984, 1989, 2004, 2014). As far as the chart record is concerned, I consider them to be different as they were all different line-ups. Other people may think differently!
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KingOfRolloween
13 Jul 2018 - 17:53
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I forgot about 2014. My Virgin book of hit singles only goes up to 2010. It's about time they published a new one but I don't think they ever will now that all that singles data can be found online.
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DanChartFan
13 Jul 2018 - 18:24
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Don't Matter To Me fell three places to five, not two places to four, unless four and five are actually technically tied (although the sales figures in the sales thread suggest that it isn't a tie).
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Suedehead2
13 Jul 2018 - 19:06
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Oops, that's what happens with writing things in advance!
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Dob Geldof
13 Jul 2018 - 20:29
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Think 3 of Elvis' re-releases hit #1 actually! Can't remember the other one not mentioned above, maybe 'It's Now Or Never' (without checking)?

That chemistry joke made me laugh!
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Suedehead2
13 Jul 2018 - 22:18
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Yes, three of the Elvis re-releases topped the chart but one of them hadn't on its original release. Glad you liked the chemistry joke!
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Popchartfreak
14 Jul 2018 - 12:51
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Hi Simon!:)

Fraid all three Elvis singles had already topped the chart - it was a campaign of number one singles. The later campaign of non-number-one singles all failed to make number one, appropriately:)

Re: Mamma Mia soundtrack, in 2008 it was ineligible for the main albums chart but outsold the whole top 10 artist albums cos it was a little bit massive at the time smile.gif Bjorn and Benny are pretty relaxed about it now qualifying, I should think, ahead of Mamma Mia 2 which happily showcases lots of lesser-known gems and catchy ditties and never actually having to work another day in their lives while the cash tills keep ker-chinging :)Then there's the new single later in the year....ohmy.gif
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