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Chart Watch Weekly - March 14th 2022

James Masterton's Chart Watch Weekly
Time for our weekly wander around the deeper dives of the facts and figures from the British charts news as well as whatever fascinating happenings from overseas we can stir up. There’s a new No.1 single in the UK at last. But are all the accolades for its sparse credits list completely justified?
Also in this week’s feast for your charts-loving eyes:
  • The Statute Of Limitations.
  • Glass Animals follow in the footsteps of… The Spice Girls?
  • Whisper it, Australia may have already discovered the hit of the summer.
  • The midweek news you all need to be aware of.

To Write Or Not To Write
As predicted we had a much-needed changing of the guard at the top of the British charts this week as Dave blew away the competition with his new single Starlight. Even if We Don’t Talk About Bruno hadn’t been binned off to ACR status Dave would have been No.1, shifting enough downloads and enjoying enough streams to command a sale of just shy of 63,000 - the biggest opening week of any single so far in 2022.
Much has been made of the fact that Starlight is a solo production in every sense of the word. Dave is the first artist since Tones & I in late 2019 to be both sole performer and songwriter of a No.1 hit, and the first solo artist to single-handedly write AND produce their own chart-topping single since Calvin Harris did so with Summer back in 2014.
But is he though? Because, as plenty leapt to point out, Starlight is by no means a totally original composition. It is based heavily around the melody from the old jazz standard Fly Me To The Moon, a song that curiously has never before been a chart hit for anyone, not even Frank Sinatra with whom it is most closely associated. The song was written and first published by Bart Howard back in 1954, and first recorded that same year by Kaye Ballard. Meaning that Dave’s “solo” No.1 single is actually based on a piece of music first composed nearly 70 years ago. We’ve no idea what deal was cut with the publishers of the song to allow it to feature as the basis of Dave’s hit, but Bart Howard is not credited as co-composer of the track. Even though he clearly should be.
The “produced solo” part is a bit of a conceit as well. The metadata for the YouTube video kind of blows the cover by crediting Jo Caleb, Elisa Caleb & Jonny Leslie with “additional production” (the former two the jazz performers who arranged the Fly Me To The Moon interpolation and the latter name one of the staff at Sarm Music Village in West London).
Nitpicking aside, the track is more than worthy of its status as the No.1 single of the week, Dave’s second journey to the top of the UK charts.
Dave - Starlight
Dave - Starlight
Our Song Is Unbreakable
Wrestling legend Jim Cornette famously once said that the statute of limitations for recycling angles or storylines was seven years, enough time having elapsed for the audience to have refreshed itself and the details to be consigned to the memory bin.
But does that apply to pop records too? Because this week there are also two new entries from tracks that recycle inspirations from hits over a decade ago.
First up is the week’s second new entry Night Away (Dance) from A1 x J1 and Tion Wayne. It unabashedly borrows the melody from that legendary worldwide smash from 1989 Lambada as originally performed by Kaoma. Which is in itself quite neat.
But of course that’s actually been done before, Jennifer Lopez using the very same track as the basis for her own global smash On The Floor which topped the charts here in 2001.
A1 x J1 - Night Away (Dance) ft. Tion Wayne (Official Video)
A1 x J1 - Night Away (Dance) ft. Tion Wayne (Official Video)
Jennifer Lopez - On The Floor ft. Pitbull
Jennifer Lopez - On The Floor ft. Pitbull
Given the title of the newer hit steals the English lyrics from the Lopez hit, it is of course more than likely that they are using On The Floor as their own direct inspiration rather than simply recycling an old idea.
Next up though is a more intriguing old connection. Come And Go lands at No.16 to give ArrDee his second big hit single in a matter of weeks. Its “stay with me, don’t fall asleep too soon” hook is a pitch-up sample of a semi-obscure Westlife track Written In The Stars which first appeared on their 2002 hits collection Unbreakable. I say “semi-obscure” because this is by no means the first time the 20-year-old cut has been re-purposed in this way. First to do it was Ironik who did the exact same thing, sampling and pitching up the Westlife track (albeit not quite as drastically) for his 2008 hit Stay With Me (which also borrowed from Rozalla’s Everybody’s Free (To Feel Good).
ArrDee - Come & Go (Official Music Video)
ArrDee - Come & Go (Official Music Video)
Ironik - Stay With Me (Official Music Video)
Ironik - Stay With Me (Official Music Video)
Once again it is entirely possible that ArrDee is taking direct inspiration from a man he will have grown up listening to rather than just hitting on the exact same idea. And this is by no means a new phenomenon, given that only last year we had the latest in a long line of hit singles which borrowed from Push The Feeling On by The Nightcrawlers.
But for two such hits to chart in the exact same week? A remarkable coincidence.
Make Me Feel Like The One
In the wild wacky world of hit albums it was another of those weeks which saw a duel between two vintage acts of differing generations.
Winners were The Stereophonics who topped the pile with Ooochya! to make this their 8th No.1 album and their second in a row following 2019’s Kind.
But close behind were no less a set of legends than Marillion, hitting No.2 with An Hour Before It’s Dark to land their highest-charting album since 1987’s Clutching At Straws, their last to feature original vocalist Fish.
Across The Pond
The American charts are a tiny bit becalmed this week, in stark contrast to the rather fresh look the UK listing has adopted in the past few weeks. Heat Waves reigns supreme at No.1 for a second week, although that itself is notable as it means Glass Animals are the first British group to top the US charts for more than a solitary week since - are you ready for this? - The Spice Girls had four weeks atop the Hot 100 with Wannabe in February 1997 - just over 25 years ago.
This is now Heat Waves’ 60th week on the US charts, making it only the 20th track ever to hit that total. Believe it or not another British act has just broken another longevity record, Dua Lipa’s Levitating landing a 70th consecutive week on the Hot 100, beating the 69 week run of How Do I Live by LeAnn Rimes as the longest-running hit by a female artist.
Just below, Kodak Black’s Super Gremlin rises into the Top 3 at the expense of Gayle. Britain remains unmoved by the talents of the man with the dazzling array of gold teeth, he’s only had one minor chart entry to his name so far way back in 2018.
Kodak Black - Super Gremlin [Official Music Video]
Kodak Black - Super Gremlin [Official Music Video]
A Land Down Under
The Australian Top 10 remains pretty much the same as before, this now the eighth week in total at No.1 for Heat Waves in its two runs exactly a year apart.
There are however a larger than usual number of new arrivals lower down the ARIA Top 50. Camilla Cabello and Ed Sheeran are No.19 with Bam Bam, a few places higher than they managed on our charts, while Labrinth and Zendaya’s I’m Tired (as heard in the “Euphoria” TV series) hits No.21.
More intriguingly though rocketing to No.27 after being all over the radio in Australia at the moment is Following The Sun by SUPER-Hi, a British-made club track which first dropped around 18 months ago (with a set of remixes following last summer) but which only now appears on the verge of breaking through internationally.
Keep an ear out, this has “hit” written all over it. Just as soon as our weather starts to turn.
SUPER-Hi x NEEKA - Following The Sun (Official Music Video)
SUPER-Hi x NEEKA - Following The Sun (Official Music Video)
And The Germans Say...
A quick screen-grab of the top end of the German singles charts as they failed to tweet it out properly last Friday. As you can see they have a brand new No.1 single of their own, Sehnsuct (“Addiction”) is credited to producers Miksu and Macloud but with vocals by skate-rapper t-low. As British rap stars plunder jazz standards for their inspiration, the German ones are going full alt-rock. But it is refreshingly different to say the least.
Miksu/Macloud x t-low - Sehnsucht (Official Video)
Miksu/Macloud x t-low - Sehnsucht (Official Video)
Midweek Teases
Dave seems a fairly safe lock for a second week at No.1 as Starlight remains comfortably ahead of the competition. His biggest challenge though seems set to be from one of his contemporaries as Aitch is set for his biggest solo hit to date with Baby set to debut at No.2.
I say “solo” but the track is also directly co-credited to American star Ashanti, a contractual necessity it seems from the track’s extensive use of samples from her 2003 hit Rock Wit U (Awww Baby).
The most-hyped new release of the week seems once more set to be just a minor entry, Megan Thee Stallion and Dua Lipa’s provocative collaboration Sweetest Pie languishing way down the latest midweeks at No.34. Which seems a bit of a waste.
Leading the way in the albums race so far is British singer-songwriter Rex Orange County with Who Cares with Impera from Swedish rock band Ghost taking second place in the first official albums chart update.
Megan Thee Stallion & Dua Lipa - Sweetest Pie [Official Video]
Megan Thee Stallion & Dua Lipa - Sweetest Pie [Official Video]
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The new UK charts are announced by Radio One from 4pm every Friday, can be seen in full on officialcharts.com and musicweek.com, and I’m now back on chart-watch.uk with my own detailed charts analysis later that same evening.
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James Masterton
James Masterton @chartupdate

From the world famous chart analyst, a weekly roundup of everything fit to print from charts worldwide. Considered coverage of the stories generated by the UK charts along with a summary of events taking place on pop charts in Europe, across the Atlantic, and on the other side of the world.

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