Volbeat Breaks Record for Most Mainstream Rock Songs No. 1s by a European Act

Volbeat makes a record rise to No. 1 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Songs airplay chart, as “Die to Live” jumps 3-1 on the March 14-dated tally.

The song is the Danish group’s eighth Mainstream Rock Songs No. 1, breaking the band out of a tie with U2 for the most No. 1s by an act based outside of North America, dating to the chart’s 1981 inception.

Volbeat first led in July 2012 with “Still Counting.” Among all artists, Volbeat ties for the ninth-most Mainstream Rock Songs No. 1s. Shinedown and Three Days Grace lead all acts with 15 apiece.

Most Mainstream Rock Songs No. 1s
15, Shinedown
15, Three Days Grace
13, Van Halen
10, Disturbed
10, Godsmack
10, Tom Petty (solo and with the Heartbreakers)
9, Aerosmith
9, Metallica
8, Five Finger Death Punch
8, Foo Fighters
8, Linkin Park
8, Nickelback
8, Volbeat

All the bands above are based or were formed in the U.S. except for Volbeat (Denmark), Nickelback and Three Days Grace (both Canada).

“Die to Live” sports vocals from Clutch’s Neil Fallon, marking Fallon’s first No. 1 solo or with his usual band. Clutch has earned three Mainstream Rock Songs entries, led by its first and highest-charting, “Careful With That Mic…” (No. 24, 2001).

Concurrently, “Die to Live” rises 15-13 on the all-rock-format Rock Airplay list with 3.4 million audience impressions, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data.

The song is the latest single from Rewind, Replay, Rebound, Volbeat’s seventh studio set, which debuted at No. 6 on Top Rock Albums last August, and has earned 69,000 equivalent album units to date. Preceding single “Last Day Under the Sun” ruled Mainstream Rock Songs for four weeks the same month.


How Ace’s 1975 Classic ‘How Long’ Hit No. 1 on a Billboard Chart This Week

A classic song that hit the Billboard Hot 100’s top three in 1975 finally makes its way to No. 1 on a Billboard chart.

Ace’s “How Long,” which rose to No. 3 on the Hot 100 in May 1975, debuts at No. 1 on Rock Digital Song Sales (dated March 14).

It enters after selling 4,000 downloads, a surge of 2,059%, in the week ending March 5, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. Sparking the gain: Its sync in a new ad for Amazon Prime.

“How Long” also garnered 831,000 U.S. streams (up 30%) in the week ending March 5, which, combined with its download count (and minimal airplay on reporting stations), spurs its debut on the sales-, streaming- and airplay-based Hot Rock Songs tally, at No. 19 (as older songs are allowed to chart if in the top half of the ranking and with a meaningful reason for their return).

Formed in 1972, Ace released three albums in the mid-’70s prior to disbanding in 1977. “How Long” stands as the English band’s top-charting Hot 100 hit; a second song, “Rock & Roll Runaway,” peaked at No. 71 in August 1975.

Versatile Ace vocalist Paul Carrack, who wrote “How Long,” went on to subsequent success both solo and with Squeeze and Mike + The Mechanics. He sang lead on Squeeze’s fellow classic “Tempted,” which climbed to No. 8 on Mainstream Rock Songs and (a perhaps surprisingly modest) No. 49 on the Hot 100 in 1981. Mike + The Mechanics sent two hits with Carrack on lead vocals to the Hot 100’s top 10: “Silent Running (On Dangerous Ground),” a No. 6 hit in 1986, and “The Living Years,” which led for a week in 1989. In between those two top 10s, his own “Don’t Shed a Tear” reached No. 9 in 1988.

Producer Jetsonmade Helped Make DaBaby and Jack Harlow Stars, Now He Wants a Grammy and a No. 1

Sometime around the middle of this past November, the 22 year-old producer Tahj Morgan, better known by his moniker Jetsonmade, was talking with his manager about the state of his career.

“I was like, ‘Man, we accomplished everything,’’ he says, recalling his newfound status as a go-to hip-hop producer. That had come thanks to the breakout success of his career-making singles for DaBaby (“Suge” and “Bop”), as well as his work on what would become Roddy Ricch’s career-making album, Please Excuse Me For Being Antisocial. “I hit Billboard, I have a Platinum track and I worked with all of the artists I wanted to work with at the time. It was like, ‘S–t, I don’t know what else I want, as far as accomplishing things as a beat producer.’ Then I realized… I don’t have no Grammy.”

With that, he sent off a fateful tweet: “new goal: Grammy.“

Less than a day later, Jetson had gotten one step closer to his dream. When the list of 2020 nominees was revealed, “Suge” snagged a nomination for best rap song. It was only the latest coup for the budding up-and-comer’s reputation as not just a buzzy name in hip-hop but a mainstream force to be reckoned with, regardless of the fact he didn’t eventually take home an award.

“I always try to take something out of it, so getting nominated was just a good experience,” he tells Billboard from an Atlanta-area studio that he’s been working out of lately. “Losing was honestly good for me because it brought me back to reality and made me look in the mirror and say, ‘Well, I’m still Jetson. I still got tracks and I’m still one of the hottest producers in the game. It just made me readjust my focus [on my goals].’”

Jetson can reliably muse about his seemingly overnight success, thanks to his savvy navigation of the industry — a journey which started in his hometown of Columbia, South Carolina. Growing up, he enjoyed two polarizing musical influences: church hymns courtesy of his mother and “whatever felt good” that his father was listening to.

“Whether I was in church singing about God or with my pops hearing songs about having sex with a bunch of women and counting money, no matter the content, I was always looking for the music,” he remembers of his sonic foundation. “Feeling that versatility and idea of the best of both worlds, that’s what I took out of it.” First taking up the drums as a kid with an eye for a Travis Barker-type career, he transitioned to producer when he was only in seventh grade, initially learning software know-how via YouTube.

However, Columbia, South Carolina isn’t so much a hotbed for hip-hop as, say, Miami or Atlanta, and what seemed like a drawback of the region soon became a key to the producer’s success. “Before I made a name for myself, I was traveling around Atlanta — but soon realized, ‘Hey, I don’t know anyone here,’” he explains. “I’m not antisocial, but I just stick to my circle.” After a stint in Atlanta, it wasn’t until Jetson moved back home to Columbia did he begin to gain traction.

“I connected with the people I could connect with, and at the time those were only people from South Carolina,” says Jetson, who worked out of an apartment he shared with his girlfriend and garnered his first cut with 21 Savage (2015’s “Slime”) through those Carolina connections. “I perfected my sound there first, and I got to a position where [to this day] I’m working with people where I’m from. Traditionally, you’d have to work with a mainstream artist to break out, rather than up-and-coming artists from the Carolinas.”

In fact, it’s Jetson’s penchant for working with obscure names he would later help turn into superstars that has set the producer apart — whether its his collaborations with Ricch, DaBaby, or Lil Keed. He recently extended that streak with the 21 year-old Kentucky rapper Jack Harlow, who earned his first Hot 100 hit with “WHATS POPPIN,” a joint production between Jetson and PoohBeatz. The track is still rising on the chart, hitting a new peak of No. 74 this week. “Jack is probably the most fun person I’ve worked with,” he says of their session. “I reached out to him in November and honestly just saw potential.”

“Our first couple days we were working well, but it took a little longer to warm up to one another on a friend level I think,” Harlow says to Billboard about his relationship with the producer. “Now we laugh and joke and say wild s–t to each other. He even introduced me to his mom on FaceTime and told her I’m his first white friend.”

When it comes to the piano-driven beat, Jetson says the two first worked on a bevy of previous demos where Harlow was singing. “Pooh came in with the beat and Jack was like, ‘Hold on, I want to rap,’” recalls Jetson. “I told him, ‘Bro, pop your s–t and rap, for real. He went into the booth and that’s how it came out.”

Harlow, meanwhile, says it’s Jetson’s decisive attitude in the studio that makes him push harder as an artist: “He exudes a lot of confidence in the decisions he makes in the studio, which gives me faith while we work,” Harlow says. “Overall, he just has a great ear for what’s sonically attractive to people.”

Harlow’s subsequent success and breakout status was a continued vindication for the young producer’s knack for bucking the status quo. “In the industry, people will try to box you in,” he says. “They’ll say, ‘You’re hot so you need to work with all of the hot people.’ It’s like, ‘Nah.’ At this point, I should be dropping tracks with the biggest artists — but it’s refreshing to start at the bottom with somebody. Now Jack has his first Hot 100 and I’m showing people I can do it again — because the same thing happened (with DaBaby) last year.”

Currently in the studio with “a bunch of artists who you probably don’t know about” (among them: South Carolina’s PG Ra), Jetson is now setting his sights on a new mission: landing his first Hot 100 No. 1.

“It wasn’t necessarily a goal of mine, but I check the charts every week,” he says, with his highest charting Hot 100 song thus far being the No. 7-peaking “Suge.” “I’m just now starting to learn how Billboard works, but it just makes me motivated. I want that No 1 spot, because all I know is that I ain’t working hard enough yet to be at the top of that list.”

Billboard Dance Emerging Artists: March 2020

As the coronavirus shuts down festivals around the globe, your headphones and at-home speakers are still safe places in which to delve into fresh sounds by new artists. This month, there are plenty of them, with sounds on deck from a quadruple threat of up-and-coming producers making waves in the worlds of techno, disco and more.

These are Billboard Dance’s emerging artists for March 2020.

Speaker Honey

Deadmau5’s seminal Mau5trap label has a strong track record of bolstering some of the best Canadian artists in electronic music — including Rezz and the label boss himself — and its latest rising star is a firecracker addition known as Speaker Honey.

The freshly released Night Visions EP is her debut release and a persuasive showing of her ability to make a room move with syrupy bass lines and bouncy rhythms. Her sound dances across the spectrum of the underground, flitting from bass house to techno and creating a new blend of sounds that feel entirely her own.

Speaker Honey is currently on tour alongside label mate No Mana and will head to Miami Music Week for an appearance at the Mau5trap pool party with Deadmau5.  — VALERIE LEE

Franc Moody

What do hot-sauce bottles, Febreze containers and radiators have in common? The sounds they make all helped create some of the funkiest music out of Tottenham, London, courtesy of Franc Moody. Officially, the outfit comprises Ned Franc and Jon Moody, but they often refer to it as a “collective” of musicians and vocalists who altogether create catchy, cosmic disco-pop that sounds like a hybrid of Daft Punk, Chic, Jamiroquai and Jungle.

Franc and Moody, though both working musicians when they first met in 2014, initially teamed up to promote warehouse parties, then to write songs. “Once we started,” they told Outline, “it was pretty evident that the music was best served in front of an audience and played live.”

On a small but solid platform of singles and EPs over the last four years, they’ve performed at festivals including Lovebox, Lost Village and Glastonbury, and clubs from Dublin’s Button Factory to Brooklyn’s Elsewhere. Late in February, Franc Moody released their debut album, Dream in Colour. They’re currently touring the LP in the U.K. and Europe, but they head Stateside in May with stops in Los Angeles, Chicago, Brooklyn and more. — KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ

Hana

What do Grimes, Anamanaguchi, Tchami and Durante all have in common? Their sonic palettes run the gamut from neon hooks to twilight moods, and yet Los Angeles-based singer, songwriter and producer Hana fits right into each quirky corner and haunting house groove.

The multitalented artist got her start singing over somber piano chords and acoustic guitar strums, but a friendship with famed producer BloodPop (Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga) inspired her to try her hand at digital production. It sparked a creative evolution that’s made her a go-to collaborator for some of the scene’s most experimental music makers. Hana just appeared on Tchami’s “Ghosts” and Durante’s “Days Pass,” with a couple more Durante collabs to come via Anjunadeep.

She’s currently opening for Mija’s Desert Trash tour and finishing edits on an otherworldly music video for solo original “Anxious Alien,” off her 2019 LP Hanadriel. The album’s mood shifts from colorfully energetic to deep warehouse rhythms to midnight blues and still carries a touch of that acoustic soul. An avid gamer and Twitch streamer, Hana often plays with digital imagery in a sci-fi vein, and she’s got a couple nods to the anime fans in the audience. With a wide breadth of influences and a lot more planned for 2020, including another EP, don’t be surprised if Hana keeps popping up on your playlists. — KAT BEIN

Camea

Camea is a Seattle native with a classical and jazz piano background who found her calling in clubland, where she cut her teeth as a ferocious techno DJ in warehouses from the West Coast to New York, finally landing in her current home base of Berlin. Though hardly a newcomer with her extensive background both behind the decks and in the studio, Camea has yet to lay claim to a full-length debut album — until now.

Set to release on her own Neverwhere imprint this Friday (March 13), Dystopian Love is the result of a six month studio period of exploration. Her nine-track LP is poignant and melancholic, unafraid to lean into minimal, melodic moments before ramping up to higher intensity tracks such as “Insomnia” and “Sunrise.” The album moves much like a soundtrack to a mystical film, and it’s no wonder — initially, the album was inspired by Camea’s own coming-of-age experiences, but transformed into a more conceptual narrative following the journey of emotions felt by a feminine being as she walks through a post-human Earth. A novel step away from her signature acid-tinged DJ sets, Dystopian Love takes Camea to new heights… and maybe even galaxies. — V.L.

Does Selena Gomez Really Think She’s ‘Going to Be Alone Forever’?

Selena Gomez visiting Genius recently, and in a video uploaded on Monday (Mar. 9), the songstress breaks down her recent album’s title track, “Rare.”

The tune, which asks, “It feels like you don’t care / Oh, why don’t you recognize I’m so rare?” touches on one-sided and manipulative relationships.

“Here’s something I’ve struggled with for a very long time. First off, self-esteem and confidence is a constant struggle for me,” she explains in the clip. “It’s getting better with time and age, but it will always be something that I’m working on. I think, recently, this is the most I’ve ever been vocal about, ‘Actually, I deserve this and I have a right to claim this and I have a right to put out things that I want to put out and talk about things I want to talk about.'”

“This is the first time that I’ve actually said it,” she continued. “And the reason why is that I didn’t want to sound like a b—-. I didn’t want to be like, ‘I deserve everything and you can’t have me unless you have this, this, this.’ And I know that’s not the case, that’s just where my mind goes to. So what I think is so important about this chorus is it’s acknowledging, like, ‘Hey, I don’t have it all and I’m not saying I’m perfect, but I do know that I’m special.’ And I think that’s a humble approach of saying, ‘Why don’t you see that I am different?’”

To sum it up, Gomez noted that she has “a lot to figure out,” and joked that “Someday is when I’m going to wake up and I’m annoyed and I’m like, ‘I’m going to be alone forever.’”

“But after that 15 minutes goes away, I say to myself, I know that there is someone for everybody,” she concluded in a positive light.

Watch the whole video below.

What Does Coachella’s Delay Mean for BIGBANG’s K-Pop Comeback?

While the official postponement of Coachella 2020 due to coronavirus is a bummer for all artists involved, BIGBANG especially seemed to be banking on the festival to stage a major comeback performance, and now their plans are seemingly thrown into limbo.

The long-running K-pop act has been on a hiatus since 2017, when the members began enlisting in South Korea’s mandatory military service. While the 18 to 20 months of service shouldn’t derail most artists’ returns to the scene, BIGBANG had a member exit (the youngest, Seungri, left amid investigations related to the high-profile “Burning Sun” cases that brought criminal charges against several K-pop stars) and other members with legal issues of their own (T.O.P was indicted for marijuana use, Daesung was investigated over a building he owned).

Despite the influx of headlines, BIGBANG was a surprise inclusion on the Coachella 2020 lineup, following in the footsteps of their younger labelmates BLACKPINK with their name high on the poster, indicating an ideal time slot for what was assumed to be their first performance in years. The booking was a savvy piece of marketing for BIGBANG, seasoned performers who have played multiple arena tours in America and could parlay the inevitable international response from the festival into growing anticipation for their K-pop comeback — and likely shush the harsh local media and comment culture in Korea.

With the performance on hold, BIGBANG’s future quickly became uncertain, especially after T.O.P commented on social media that he had no plans to return to show business.

But sources close to YG Entertainment tell Billboard that BIGBANG are working on a new album this year as a quartet, putting to rest worries that this was a farewell stage for the group or that new music would be dependent on the response to the performance. Also helping push BIGBANG forward is news that all four stars re-signed their contracts with YG, marking the third round of successful negotiations after the band renewed in 2011 and 2015.

While sources say it’s too early to know if BIGBANG will play the newly rescheduled October dates for Coachella, all signs point toward 2020 marking renewed activity from the band. But instead of using the Indio, Calif., festival for their comeback performance or to premiere new music, BIGBANG will likely need to think up another exciting way to drum up excitement for the release or go through traditional release methods. The guys could also take a page from BLACKPINK — who released their Kill This Love EP just a week ahead of the festival — and deliver their new music to the huge audience in October.

No matter what route they take, BIGBANG’s return should be well-received Stateside.

The outfit was the first K-pop group to enter the Billboard 200 back in 2012 and have since earned four No. 1s on World Digital Song Sales, putting them only behind BTS in terms of male groups with the most chart-toppers on the list.

Coronavirus

Mali Music Is Down to Reunite With Jhené Aiko for ‘The Book of Mali’ Album

Mali Music graced the stage of Billboard’s NYC office Wednesday morning (March 11) to bring his signature hip-hop and gospel blend to life with his latest single “Let Go” and a couple of unreleased songs that will be featured on his upcoming fifth album, The Book of Mali.

He announced the new record will be released in the summer during the interview following his invigorating performance, ending fans’ three-year wait for a new album since his 2017 LP The Transition of Mali.

“I never stopped creating,” he told Billboard host Jordyn Rolling. “So now all of those phases have become like albums. It’s kind of crazy and difficult to release ‘Let Go,’ which is just a scene of a movie that’s an hour…. I can’t wait for them to see how it goes into that next scene, ultimately get the whole plot. And I can’t wait for the halfway point when they think that they know what’s going to happen and it kinda twists.”

“More Low” and “Cry,” the two songs he debuted during his performance but are not yet on digital and streaming platforms, will also be featured on the project. Although he has yet to secure any features on The Book of Mali, the contemporary R&B artist said he would love to bring Jhené Aiko back. She collaborated with Mali on “Contradiction” from The Transition of Mali.

“Man, we always do stuff,” the 32-year-old singer said. “She just really respects my music, and I really appreciate that she responds to me in the way that she did. A lot of the times, it’s like, ‘Oh my gosh, I love you so much!’ But nobody ever goes to the next level. She actually got her team, and they were like, ‘We don’t know this guy, can we get somebody else or whatever?’ And she kinda just saw it through. I was able to drop the files, and she sung the songs.”

He continued, “I was most excited and proud about the stuff that we did on her album Trip. I wrote ‘Frequency’ on there. I was able to do several looks on there and just really [feel] blessed about her evolution. So she’s dope.”

Watch Mali Music’s entire Billboard Live performance and Q&A below.