We begin this week with a chart with a difference, as today (Monday 28th) the IFPI announced their annual “chart of the year”, aiming to tally together global digital sales and streams to compile the definitive worldwide biggest hits of 2021.
As you can see there The Weeknd topped the pile with Save Your Tears, making it the second year in a row he has had the planet’s biggest song after Blinding Lights dazzled the competition in 2020.
As ever, take these tables with a slight pinch of salt as they inevitably favour those hits which have been around the longest, with more of an opportunity to accumulate the numbers. But for those curious about the underlying figures, here is the full Top 10. Numbers are streaming equivalents (ie with paid sales accounting for 0.x of a stream) in billions:
1) The Weeknd - Save Your Tears 2.15
2)The Kid Laroi, Justin Bieber - Stay 2.07
3) Dua Lipa - Levitating 1.88
4) BTS - Butter 1.76
5) Olivia Rodrigo - Drivers License 1.73
6) Justin Bieber (ft. Daniel Caesar, Giveon) - Peaches 1.72
7) The Weeknd - Blinding Lights 1.61
8) Olivia Rodrigo - Good 4 U 1.61
9) Lil Nas X - Montero (Call Me By Your Name) 1.60
10) Ed Sheeran - Bad Habits 1.57
You’ll note the lack of Adele in there, as Easy On Me was indeed released too late in the year to accumulate the billions of streams required. Otherwise there are few shocks, even if the failure of British audiences to take to Butter in the huge numbers elsewhere remains a fascination.