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'American Idol' on the Charts: Mandisa's Robin Roberts-Inspired 'Overcomer' Ascends

The season five alum tells THR the story behind her Christian hit; Also: Jordin Sparks and boyfriend Jason DeRulo will release a duet, but they’re already (almost) together on the Billboard Hot 100.

Mandisa Robin Roberts split P
Getty Images (Robin Roberts)
Mandisa (left); Robin Roberts

INSPIRATION REVEALED: Mandisa’s fourth studio album (and fifth overall, including her Christmas set) won’t be released until Aug. 27, but anticipation for this pop-oriented Christian album is building, thanks to the success of the first single. “Overcomer,” the upbeat title track, is No. 1 on the Christian Digital Songs chart for the third week.

The season five finalist revealed the inspiration for the song to The Hollywood Reporter. “When I was on Good Morning America, I gave a copy of my [What If We Were Real] CD to Robin Roberts, knowing she was going to be out for her bone marrow transplant.” That CD included the No. 1 song “Stronger,” which Mandisa thought was perfect for Roberts, who, while lacking physical strength, did exude a spiritual power. “You’re not an ‘overcomer’ if you don’t face anything difficult,” Mandisa says of Roberts’ illness and triumphant return to GMA. “You are an overcomer if you face your battles and come out on top, just as I have, walking through the battles in my own life.”

In addition to its sales success, “Overcomer” is also doing well on Billboard’s airplay charts. The song is in the top 10 of the Christian Songs tally, holding at No. 8. On the Christian Adult Contemporary survey, “Overcomer” moves up a spot, from 13-12.

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TOGETHER AGAIN: Jordin Sparks’ first hit as a songwriter, “The Way” by Ariana Grande featuring Mac Miller, is on its way down the Hot 100 after spending time in the top 10. The song slides three places, from 14-17 this week, which is exactly one rung above the current single by Sparks’ boyfriend, Jason DeRulo. He holds at No. 18 (with a bullet) with “The Other Side.”

While this brings the couple closer together on the Hot 100, they might be even closer on this chart in the next few weeks. That’s because Sparks has recorded a duet with DeRulo, “Before It Breaks.” It won’t be the first single from her forthcoming album -- Sparks has already announced that the initial single will be “Skipping a Beat.”

‘GONE’ FOR GOOD: Phillip Phillips’ “Gone, Gone, Gone” continues to climb the Billboard charts. On the Adult Contemporary list, the song is up two slots, No. 8 to No. 6, to reach a new peak position, and makes the biggest gain in airplay of any song on the chart. On Rock Digital Songs, “Gone” jumps three spots to No. 4 and on Rock Songs the title is up one to No. 3. On Hot 100 Airplay, “Gone” advances from 20-17 and on Mainstream Top 40, the song edges up 23-22.

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One chart where “Gone, Gone, Gone” is a non-mover is Adult Top 40, where the song still sits at a lofty No. 4.

Also moving up this week is Phillips’ first single, “Home,” which made its first chart appearance 14 months ago. The quadruple-platinum release rebounds three spots, from 19-16, on Rock Digital Songs, while spending a third week at No. 1 on Adult Contemporary Recurrents.      

BITS AND PIECES: Carrie Underwood’s “See You Again” breaks into the top five on Country Detections, with a three-spot rise to No. 4. The song also improves on Country Airplay, where a hike of 8-6 achieves a new peak position … Moving up on that same chart is Kelly Clarkson’s “Tie It Up” (40-35) … "Without Me” by Fantasia, and featuring Kelly Rowland and Missy Elliott, inches up the Adult R&B chart, from 13-12, while the previous single, “Lose to Win,” remains in the top 10, standing pat at No. 9. On Hot R&B/Hip-Hip Airplay, “Without Me” stays in the top 10, climbing two spots to No. 7. With the two singles performing well, its no surprise the parent album, Side Effects of You, rebounds three spots, from 22-19, on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.

Twitter: @Idol_Worship