Charts analysis: George Ezra rides Shotgun to singles summit
by Alan Jones
His debut hit, Budapest, reached No.3 in 2013; his most recent hit, Paradise, reached No.2 in April; and this week George Ezra completes his collection of medal positions and secures his first No.1 with Shotgun.
Helped – as were the last two No.1s – by a reduction to 59p at iTunes, Shotgun’s consumption increased 41.97% to 53,696 last week, including 24,873 from sales-equivalent streams, enough to end the one week reign of Clean Bandit’s Solo (feat. Demi Lovato), which retreats again to No.2 but still has impetus, with sales up 13.20% week-on-week at 47,059.
In an era when collaborations of artists and writers are epidemic, Ezra is the sole artist and the sole writer credited on Shotgun, something last achieved on a No.1 single by Ed Sheeran with Perfect last December. Of 223 new No.1 singles this decade, Shotgun is only the ninth to be so credited – those that came before Perfect, from most recent to least recent being Mike Posner’s I Took A Pill In Ibiza, Mr. Probz’s Waves, Pharrell Williams’ Happy, Martin Garrix’s Animals, Sak Noel’s Loca People, Dizzee Rascal’s Dirtee Disco and Owl City’s Fireflies. I am aware that other people may be involved in some of the tracks – Sak Noel’s, for instance, has an uncredited vocal by Esthera Sarita – but am focusing on credited artists and writers. All of the above, you will note are males: for the last No.1 written and performed by a female soloist we have to go all the way back to 1997, when Tori Amos’ Professional Widow topped the list, admittedly with much of its appeal being generated by Armand Ven Helden’s dance remix.
In the first full week after his death, rapper Xxxtentacion’s three concurrent re-entries jump to new peaks, with Sad! climbing 31-5 (31,149 sales), Moonlight dashing 32-17 (19,633 sales) and Changes advancing 33-22 (17,334 sales).
There are new peaks in the Top 10 for If You’re Over Me (8-6, 30,432 sales) by Years & Years and I Like It (9-8, 29,528 sales) by Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin but not for Anne-Marie’s 2002, which spends its fifth straight week at No.3, while upping consumption to a personal best 36,790 units.
The rest of the Top 10: I’ll Be There (4-4, 32,177 sales) by Jess Glynne, Better Now (6-7, 29,680 sales) by Post Malone, Leave A Light On (7-9, 26,401 sales) by Tom Walker and One Kiss (10-10, 25,710 sales) by Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa.
After nine weeks in the top five – the last three of them at No.5 – Ariana Grande’s No Tears Left To Cry is the latest ACR casualty, dipping to No.23 (16,227 sales). On a more positive note, Grande grabs her 20th Top 75 hit, and featured vocalist Nicki Minaj her 45th, as their collaboration, The Light Is Coming, shines with an 86-57 (7,813 sales) improvement.
Cheat Codes have their fifth Top 40 hit and Little Mix their 20th, as their collaboration, Only You (No.32, 13,012 sales) is the week’s highest new entry.
Also new to the chart are: Ring Ring (No.40, 10,947 sales) by Jax Jones feat. Mabel & Rich The Kid; High Hopes (No.56, 7,974 sales), the second hit for Panic! At The Disco, which arrives on a flurry of BBC Radio 1 plays a little over 10 years after their first hit, Nine In The Afternoon, peaked at No.13; The Other Side (No.59, 7,648 sales) another hit from The Greatest Showman by Hugh Jackman & Zac Efron; Demi Lovato’s confessional 16th hit Sober (No.63, 7,130 sales); 079me (No.69, 6,447 sales), the second hit for London rapper B Young; Energy (Stay Far Away) (No.73, 6,105 sales) by Skepta & Wizkid; and Senseless (83-75, 5,978 sales), the fifth hit for Stefflon Don.
There are new peaks for: Youngblood (13-11, 24,382 sales) by 5 Seconds Of Summer, Rise (17-12, 23,996 sales) by Jonas Blue feat. Jack & Jack, Lucid Dreams (23-18, 19,236 sales) by Juice Wrld, Jackie Chan (35-20, 17,553 sales) by Tiesto & Dzeko feat. Preme & Post Malone, Oh My (34-31, 13,748 sales) by Dappy feat. Ay Em, Taste (42-34, 12,889 sales) by Tyga feat. Offset, Apes**t (43-36, 12,235 sales) by The Carters and Nevermind (47-39, 10,950 sales) by Dennis Lloyd.
Also: Fine Girl (50-45, 9,561 sales) by ZieZie, I Wanna Know (52-48, 9,209 sales) by NOTD feat. Bea Miller, Panic Room (55-50, 8,579 sales) by Au/Ra feat. CamelPhat, London (54-51, 8,541 sales) by AJ x Deno feat. EO and Colors (73-66, 6,937 sales) by Jason Derulo.
England are through to the knockout stages of the World Cup, helping their 1996 football anthem 3 Lions to make a further leap. Climbing 72-42 (10,684 sales), it still trails the No.27 peak it achieved when the World Cup was last staged in 2014, even though the team fell at the first hurdle then.
Overall singles sales are up 5.44% week-on-week to a six week high at 17,020,004, 28.24% above same week 2017 sales of 13,271,564. Streams accounted for 16,077,865 sales, 94.46% of the total. Paid-for sales are down 2.62% week-on-week at 942,139, and are 38.05% below same week 2017 sales of 1,520,687. They are below same-week, previous-year sales for the 256th week in a row.
© Music Week