Friday, August 29, 2008

Estelle Latest Victim of Billboard Hot 100's Bias

If you've been following the pop music charts recently, you've noticed the invasion of acts from across the Atlantic including Leona Lewis, Duffy and now Estelle. While Leona has already had a multi-format U.S. #1 smash here with "Bleeding Love" and a follow-up in "Better in Time" about to crack the top 10 on the pop chart, the other overseas acts have struggled to get widespread acceptance here in the states until recently.

Surprisingly, Estelle has been able to hold off Leona's latest hit on the pop chart, currently sitting at #13 with her hit "American Boy" ("Better in Time" is at #14). With nearly 90,000 downloads in the previous week, "American Boy" was the #6 most downloaded song in the U.S. With airplay from other formats thrown in, Estelle's song was just about to crack the top 10 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. As of last week, it sat at #11.

Personally, I'm not really a huge fan of Estelle's hit (though the song is growing on me), but still what has happened this week is just more fuel for my argument that the Billboard Hot 100 should go to a rolling six week sales average to determine the sales component on the chart. This past week, Estelle's label pulled "American Boy" from all of the digital download sites including iTunes. With that, the song experienced a 75% drop in sales this week to just over 22,000 units. Despite the continued airplay gains, the song plummeted to #37 on the Hot 100 chart as a result of the label suddenly repressing downloads!

Did Estelle's song suddenly drop in popularity? No. Did the Billboard Hot 100 just lose even more relevance? Of course.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with your assessment, John.

Estelle was pulled from Itunes and the song had a very silly "ping pong" run up and down that chart.

I stopped following that chart a long time ago as it isn't reflective of what the "Hot 100" songs are. Kid Rock's song got to what, number 25 on that chart? I heard that song EVERYWHERE here in Midland and many of my friends bought his CD. That song was the biggest hit of the summer!!!

Thanks for setting all of the numbskulls who use the Hot 100 as their music chart reference "Bible" straight. You're doing us all a GREAT service!