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First singles chart to include streaming data results in a Problem

By | Published on Monday 7 July 2014

Ariana Grande

So I’m sure you all tuned in diligently to the BBC’s Radio One-a-thon last night to hear chart history occur live on air, right? What do you mean you spent your weekend glued to tennis, cycling, football and F1? This was a big weekend for the music business and all things digital. I mean I may have spent half of yesterday watching ‘Drop The Dead Donkey’ repeats on Netflix, but at least I was embracing the digital age, you crazy sports fans you.

Anyway, so, yes, Ariana Grande and Iggy Azalea secured their unmovable place in British chart history yesterday by securing number one in the first ever singles chart to include streaming as well as download and CD sales data. Yep, that’s right, all those streams you guys did on Napster and Rara last week impacted on yesterday’s big Top 40, with the 712,000 streams scored last week by Grande and Azalea’s track ‘Problem’ (hence the misleading headline) counting as an extra 7120 sales, in addition to the 106,000 it had already achieved.

Grande was so overcome with joy at being the first ever number one artist in the whole new era of British record chartdom she couldn’t speak, so had to send her manager Scooter Braun, who told her UK fans “this is your number one too”. Which it isn’t. Fortunately Azalea was slightly more eloquent in assessing this brave new world of music chart calculation, telling reporters “I’m so happy”, before adding “Yay!” And do you know what, if you think about that extra carefully, you’ll see that she’s right.