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Ariana Grande gets a third week at number one
Ariana Grande's Positions remains at the top of the singles chart but the album of the same name is displaced by Kylie Minogue.

Ariana Grande spends a third week at the top of the singles chart. Kylie Minogue wins a titanic battle for supremacy in the albums chart.

Ariana Grande’s Positions stays at number one in the singles chart for a third week. She still has the maximum of three songs in the singles chart. However, this week a different title is her third most popular song of the week. That means that Motive crashes out of the chart altogether after being at number sixteen last week while POV enters at number 22. Her other charting song, 34+35 is at number eighteen.

Internet Money, Gunna and Don Toliver also stay put. They are at number two for the third week with Lemonade. Little Mix climb nine places to number three with Sweet Melody. They also have a new entry at number 23 with the title track from their new album, Confetti.

Wes Nelson and Hardy Caprio fall one place to number four with See Nobody. Miley Cyrus is back up to number five with Midnight Sky.

Giggs and Dave enter at number 35 with the oddly-titled Straight Murder (Giggs and David). The title is more interesting than the song which is Giggs’ fifth top forty hit and Dave’s sixteenth.

At least Giggs’ single has a title made up of real English words which is more than can be said for the song which provides CJ with his debut hit, Whoopty at number 39. This is not a belated chart success for the former Egghead. This CJ is a Staten Island-based rapper with Puerto Rican heritage.

Dua Lipa rises to number ten with Levitating to give her a fourth top ten hit from the album Future Nostalgia.

Many artists at the start of their career are heavily dependent on other more seasoned music industry personnel, whether that is a producer or someone more experienced in the promotional side. As they get older, these artists frequently break away from their earlier mentors, sometimes only after a legal battle to take more control of their career. Many of them fail to match their earlier success but others go on to achieve a longer career.

Among the producers to have controlled many artists’ early career are the triumvirate of Mike Stock, Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman while one of the best-known PR-men is Simon Cowell. By coincidence, two acts to have come under their control - one each - had new albums out last Friday and they were locked in a close battle at the top of the chart.

Stock, Aitken and Waterman’s first major success as producers was Dead Or Alive’s chart-topping single You Spin Me Round (Like A Record). Their “signature” sound, though, came with a string of other artists with a young actress from Australian soap Neighbours as one of those leading the way. Over thirty years on, she has left her bubblegum pop days long behind her and now prefers a more sophisticated brand of pop. She no longer gets much airplay on major radio stations such as Radio 1 and is now only a rare visitor to the singles chart but her albums continue to sell well. Her latest release, Disco, is no exception and she gets an eighth number one with her fifteenth studio album.

That brings us to the act whose career started under the influence of Simon Cowell. While many music promoters have to go out and find their acts, Cowell has managed to persuade ITV to put on two series per year (until last year) and do a lot of the work while also providing many hours of prime-time Saturday night television to help with the promotion. Not only that, they actually pay him for the privilege. One of the acts to have helped him line his pockets are the 2011 X Factor winners Little Mix. All of their albums have reached the top five but only one of them, Glory Days (2016) went all the way to number one. Without Kylie, they would have easily achieved their second number one album; instead their sixth studio album, Confetti, is at number two.

A lot of wedding services (back in the days when they were allowed) end with confetti being thrown before the guests head off somewhere for a meal and, perhaps, a disco. In this week’s album chart, the disco comes before the confetti. At a time when album sales are generally painfully low, the presence at the top of the chart of two albums with around 50,000 sales (including stream equivalents) each is a welcome relief.

Last week’s top two both fall two places. Araiana Grande’s Positions is at number three and Sam Smith’s Love Goes is at four.

Kylie Minogue was chosen for the Sunday afternoon “Legends Slot” at the Glastonbury Festival last year. Twelve years earlier, the slot was filled by Welsh singer Shirley Bassey, then aged 70. Thirteen years on, she is still performing and has now released a new album, I Owe It All To You. Intriguingly, the album includes versions of Queen’s Who Wants To Live Forever and John Miles’ Music as well as the rather safer Always On My Mind, originally popularised by Elvis Presley before being covered brilliantly by the Pet Shop Boys for a Christmas number one.

I Owe It All To You enters at number five to give Bassey a first top ten album since 1973. It is worth adding that Kylie Minogue has managed at least one number one album in each of the intervening decades making her the first female artist to top the chart in five successive decades.

The headliners at that 2007 were Arctic Monkeys who even performed Diamonds Are Forever in honour of Shirley Bassey. They re-enter at number 37 with AM.

Kylie Minogue and Shirley Bassey both had their first chart success in their late teens. Aled Jones had his first hit at an even younger age. He was just short of his fifteenth birthday when his version of Walking In The Air from The Snowman (although not the version used in the film which was sung by Peter Auty) reached the top ten. As the title Blessings suggests, his fortieth album is a collection of religious songs. It enters at number fourteen.

There is another religious album at number 29 in the form of Light Of The World by the Poor Clares Of Arundel. The Poor Clares are a group of women from a convent in the lovely Sussex town of Arundel.

Following two Welsh singers, we move on to a rapper who shares his name with the man who, until his recent suspension, was the manager of the Welsh football team. Giggs enters at number fifteen with Now Or Never. Dutch-raised British rapper Dutchavelli is at number eight with Dutch From The 5th.

For many of us, one of our first introductions to classical music came from a piece specifically written for children. Among the best known such works are Benjamin Britten’s Young Person’s Guide To The Orchestra, Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf and Camille Saint-Saens Carnival of the Animals.

Many recordings of these works are accompanied by a narration. My father’s copy of Carnival of the Animals included Noel Coward narrating gloriously silly verses written by the American poet Ogden Nash. The lack of any “official” script means, of course, that there is always scope for somebody to write some fresh words. Furthermore, they can be written and/or read by people likely to appeal to a new generation of children rather than “some dead bloke reading words written by another dead bloke”. The 2020 version, called simply Carnival, calls upon writer Michael Morpurgo and actor Olivia Colman to provide the narration with the music performed by the Kanneh-Masons. It is a new entry at number sixteen.

Saint Saens has contributed to the chart before. Scott Fitzgerald and Yvonne Keeley’s 1978 hit If I Had Word was based on part of the French composer’s third symphony.

While Shirley Bassey is the oldest performing artist to have a new entry this week, she is not the one with the earliest date of birth. That honour falls to Vera Lynn who died earlier this year at the age of 103. A new compilation Keep Smiling Through, named after her 2017 autobiography, is at number 28.

It may only be mid-November but it is time for the first sighting of Michael Buble’s Christmas album which enters at number 31. Machine Gun Kelly returns at number 39 with Tickets To My Downfall. Kid Laroi returns at number eleven with his album which beats its previous peak by one place. Dermot Kennedy’s Without Fear returns at number thirteen following the release of an expanded edition.

Last week Lewis Capaldi’s Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent broke the record for the longest consecutive run in the top ten for an album by a solo artist. It extends that record by a further week by getting a 78th week in the top ten. With the number of big releases now starting to fall as we approach the end of the year, he may yet challenge the 92 weeks achieved by Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water fifty years ago.
Published on: 2020-11-13 by Suedehead2 || 1011 Views
Comments (2)
King Rollo
13 Nov 2020 - 19:56
BuzzJack Platinum Member
Group: Members
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Those of a certain age will know a third CJ. "I didn't get where I am today by using made up words like Whoopty".

Are the Poor Clares the first group of nuns to have a top 40 album?

13 Nov 2020 - 21:11
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That's true. How could I forget John Barron?

If fictional nuns count, there were some on the Sound Of Music soundtrack.
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