Charlie Cook On Air: Three No. 1 Songs Each Week?

Charlie Cook

Charlie Cook

Tyler Farr had his first No. 1 song on Mediabase earlier this month. Sony worked hard to get that accomplished and  should be proud of the accomplishment. I am sure Tyler will have more No. 1s. This week Billy Currington got the spins for a No. 1 song on Mediabase. Tyler shared his peak position with Billy last week because “Hey Girl” was number in Billboard. So actually we had two No. 1 songs the same week and now Billy has ascended to number one in Mediabase too. Add in the MusicRow chart, and maybe we should set a goal of having at least three No. 1 songs every week.

The bragging rights would be fascinating. Kind of like ESPN on Saturday where a half dozen College team fans are chanting, “We’re No. 1.” TV has it covered. Alabama fans are No. 1 on ESPN. Oregon can be No. 1 on ESPN2 and Clemson can be No. 1 on ESPNU.

Maybe we can also set up a playoff scheme where Billy plays Tyler, with the winner taking on Thomas Rhett, who appears set to be No. 1 next week. Every month we have a winner and then at the end of the year we set a 12-team (maximum) tournament. Now, it is possible the same act will win more than once, reducing the number in the tourney. I can see the bidding war to broadcast this. (Cumulus/CBS/Clear Channel/Townsquare). Now we’re talking real money. Not the shallow bragging rights of being No. 1 for one out of 52 weeks.

If this is all for bonus money, let’s kick this into high gear and have it mean something to radio and the listeners who wouldn’t know a No. 1 record from any of the other seven to nine records that play in the exact same rotation as the “No. 1” song each week. I take that back. Radio is well-aware, because programmers are called for weeks leading up to this magical coronation imploring them to position the song for maximum spins on X week. By the way, “so-and-so is over so you can move it out (and out of my way) in the next week.”

Now, there is a benefit to this “sharing” of information. I have discovered no going for number one song has ever, in the history of radio research, had a bad score the weeks leading up to, or going, for the top spot. Heck, why do I even look at my research? Well, because in many cases it doesn’t jibe with what I’m hearing.

If a game is played we should keep score. And I guess this is keeping score. I just think the game actually hurts record sales. Everything is geared towards the first week of a CD release and then we’re on to something else. And once the song makes No. 1, the promotion teams forget about it. I can show you time after time that acceptance of music comes way after the peak chart position. Recurrent music is more accepted by the listener than currents. The time to sell music is when the listener puts the singer with the song.

Selling 30,000 CDs is not an accomplishment that is going to make anyone rich.

The tournament? Now that could make someone rich.

(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of MusicRow.)


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