'American Idol' on the Charts: Mariah Carey's New Single Takes Off (To See the Wizard)
"Almost Home," from the "Oz" soundtrack, debuts on two R&B surveys. Plus: Phillip Phillips ups his total of No. 1s, and Fantasia is "Greatest Gainer."
HERE COMES THE JUDGE: Even though the show has been on the air for 12 seasons, it’s still a rare event for an American Idol judge to have a single on the Billboard charts as an artist during their tenure on the series. Paula Abdul did it twice, first in 2008 with “Dance Like There’s No Tomorrow” and again in 2009 with “I’m Just Here for the Music.” Jennifer Lopez had four singles chart in 2011-12, starting with “On the Floor.” Her fellow judge Steven Tyler charted in 2011 with his solo single “(It) Feels So Good.”
This week, this elite list adds another name. Mariah Carey charts for the first time since she became a judge on Idol. Her soundtrack single from the forthcoming Oz the Great and Powerful makes four debuts. “Almost Home” is a new entry at No. 18 on R&B Songs and bows at No. 9 on the R&B Digital Songs chart. This is Carey’s first appearance on both charts -- no surprise, since both are fairly new in the pantheon of charts compiled every week by Billboard. "Almost Home" is also new at No. 1 on Bubbling Under Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and No. 29 on R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Songs.
Carey has one of the most impressive chart histories of the last quarter-century (she made her debut in 1990), just as Abdul, Tyler and Lopez had a long list of hits prior to appearing on Idol, but being on the show cannot be a hindrance to continued chart success. Look for “Almost Home” to debut on more Billboard charts next week.
ON THE ‘HOME’ FRONT: The story of Phillip Phillips’ “Home” does not have an ending yet. The single debuts at No. 1 on the Adult Top 40 Recurrents chart this week. It is the 10th chart to lift the season 11’s winner coronation song to first place, following Rock Digital Songs, Hot Digital Songs, Hot Digital Tracks, Triple A, Triple A Audience, Adult Top 40, Adult Contemporary, Adult Contemporary Audience and Mainstream Top 40 Recurrents. Add in Phillips’ one week at No. 1 with his album The World from the Side of the Moon on Top Rock Albums, and he now has 11 Billboard No. 1s to his credit.
While “Home” continues to build, the follow-up is also moving in the right direction. “Gone, Gone, Gone” breaks into the top 20 of the Rock Songs chart, where it is up 26-20.
Trivia note: you only need six letters (E, G, H, M, N and O) to spell the titles of Phillips’ first two singles.
BITS AND PIECES: Fantasia’s “Lose to Win” holds at No. 11 with a bullet on the Adult R&B chart and is named that tally’s “Greatest Gainer,” meaning it has the biggest percentage gain in airplay of any song on the list. The single also leaps 47-38 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay ... “Battle Scars” by Lupe Fiasco and Australian Idol winner Guy Sebastian is a top 20 hit on Rap Songs (up 22-19) and R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Songs (up 20-15). On the Hot 100, “Battle Scars” improves 86-77 ... Kelly Clarkson’s “Catch My Breath” has a sales bump this week, resulting in a 36-29 rise on the Hot Digital Songs chart ... Colton Dixon’s “You Are” makes the same 16-15 move on both Christian Songs and Christian Adult Contemporary ... Mandisa’s “Stronger” re-enters the Christian Digital Songs chart at No. 3, while the follow-up, “Good Morning” with featured artist tobyMac, resurges 23-15 ... Jason Castro’s “Only a Mountain” makes a giant 44-19 leap on Top Christian Albums.