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Apr 17

Charts – 16 April 2021

Posted on Saturday, April 17, 2021 by Paul in Music

The market for Taylor Swift doing Taylor Swift covers is a healthy one.

1. Lil Nas X – “Montero (Call Me By Your Name)”

Three weeks, which is longer than “Old Town Road” managed – making it his biggest UK hit. Its sales are also continuing to increase, and so it could be here for a while to come. It holds “Peaches” by Justin Bieber at number 2 for a second week.

3. Polo G – “Rapstar”

This isn’t Polo G’s first UK hit, but you’d struggle to say his previous chart record qualified him as a star – he has a technical number 3 hit by guesting on KSI’s hit “Patience”, and he has co-billing with Lil Tjay and Fivio Foreign on “Headshot”, which scraped a week at number 40.

The ukelele riff isn’t a sample – it’s by Einer Bankz, who’s done a string of ukulele collaboration with rappers. That aside, the song is a familiar routine about fame and fortune not bringing happiness, which feels to me like exhausted territory in rap. But it’s number 3 without the benefit of a built-in fanbase, so there you go.

9. Dave – “Titanium”
33. Dave / Kamal – “Mercury”

It’s been two years since Dave last released a single of his own – “Paper Cuts”, which got to number 15. These two tracks are surprise releases, with no videos. “Titanium” is a two-minute fragment, though it seems to have been received as the A-side. Kamal gets his first chart credit through his appearance on “Mercury”, which is the better track by some way.

10. Doja Cat featuring SZA – “Kiss Me More”

Very much in Doja Cat’s established vein from the last couple of years, but it’s a niche she seems to have carved out for herself. This is her second top ten hit, following “Say So” (which reached number 2).

30. Taylor Swift – “Mr Perfectly Fine (Taylor’s Version)”

Taylor Swift enters the album chart at number 1 with “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)”. The back story here is probably familiar. The master tapes to Taylor Swift’s first six albums were effectively acquired by Scooter Braun when he bought out the record label, Big Machine Records. Swift objects strongly to that and wants to buy the master tapes herself; realistically, her master tapes were the most valuable asset of Big Machine when Braun acquired it. Her response has been to veto the use of any of the songs from those albums in films and advertisements, and then announce a project to re-record all the albums in question, effectively sterilising the value of the original master tapes. Whether Braun failed to anticipate that she could do this, or simply didn’t think that she would, is difficult to say; either way, it illustrates the options open to a sufficiently determined artist.

The re-recording project begins with her second album, though she does intend to return to the self-titled debut at some point. Realistically there’s more of a market for “Fearless”, which has her breakthrough international hit “Love Story”.

Whether replicating an old album is the best use of Taylor Swift’s time from an artistic point of view may be another matter. But it’s not as if it’s squeezing out other projects. This is her third number one within a year, following the two original albums she made in lockdown. It sets a new record for the fastest trio of number one albums, which previously stood at 364 days and had been set by the Beatles.

The new version of “Fearless” is nothing if not comprehensive – it includes all the bonus tracks from the expanded edition, a song she did for the 2010 film Valentine’s Day, and six tracks written at the time and not previously released. One of those is “Mr Perfectly Fine”, which has understandably been pushed to radio as a single, and duly makes an appearance in the top 40.

32. Rag’n’Bone Man & Pink – “Anywhere Away From Here”

The follow-up to “All You Ever Wanted”, which reached number 29 earlier in the year. And look, here’s Pink, still having hits in 2021. Her first hits came in 2000, and she’s been around consistently since then. She hasn’t had a hit every year since then – but she has had a top 40 hit in every year that she released something. Admittedly, it was bloody close last year, with “One Too Many”, a duet with Keith Urban, managing a single week at number 40. But here she is again.

39. Wes Nelson featuring Yxng Bane – “Nice to Meet Ya”

The follow up to last year’s “See Nobody”, which reached number 3. The video’s fun. Yxng Bane, who used to show up quite frequently as a guest, hasn’t been in the top 40 since 2019.

That’s the new entries. I’m going to go back to grouping the climbers at the end…

  • “Bed” by Joel Corry, Raye & David Guetta climbs 6-4. By passing number 5, it becomes Guetta’s highest-placing single since his final number one, 2014’s “Lovers on the Sun”.
  • “Little Bit of Love” by Tom Grennan climbs 11-8.
  • “Body” by Russ Millions & Tion Wayne climbs 12-11.
  • “Let’s Go Home Together” by Ella Henderson & Tom Grennan climbs 13-12; Grennan’s career, clearly, is shifting into a higher gear.
  • “Ferrari Horses” by D-Block Europe & Raye climbs 22-16, continuing to defy the normal one-week-wonder performance of D-Block Europe songs.
  • “Deja Vu” by Olivia Rodrigo climbs 27-26. That’s… less than I would have expected in its second week. Hmm.
  • “Didn’t Know” by Tom Zanetti climbs 40-37.

On the album chart, Taylor Swift is number 1. Number 4 is a re-entry for “Positions” by Ariana Grande, which I wouldn’t normally mention except… it’s not there because of a special edition with bonus material. It’s there because the album was released on vinyl. And really, if you can get to number 4 on the album chart by releasing a vinyl edition of something that’s been out for half a year, that’s… not a good sign for the health of the album market, surely.

12. DMX – “The Best Of”

DMX died last week, which prompts this 2010 compilation to chart (quite probably because of people using it as a streaming playlist). It didn’t actually chart on first release, making this a new entry. He did have three hit albums between 2001 and 2006, and had a few hit singles during the same period, the most notable being “X Gon’ Give It To Ya”, which got to number 6 in 2003.

21. Jean Michel Jarre – “Amazônia”

This is a soundtrack to a photography exhibition by Sebastião Selgado, hence the extensive ambient elements. There are no official videos on his YouTube channel, but there is a four minute video illustrating the differences between the regular mix and the binaural mix for headphones users. To be fair, it is quite noticeable.

24. Brockhampton – “Roadrunner – New Light New Machine”

And finally, the self-proclaimed boy band. The previous album reached number 11, but this seems to be more their normal level.

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