Chart Watch: ‘Despacito’ Is This Year’s ‘Macarena’

Paul Grein
Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee perform onstage at the Billboard Latin Music Awards at Watsco Center on April 27, 2017 in Coral Gables, Florida. (Photo by Sergi Alexander/Getty Images)

Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee’s “Despacito” (featuring Justin Bieber) this week becomes the first song sung mostly in Spanish to crack the top five on Billboard‘s Hot 100 since Los Del Rio’s 1996 smash “Macarena.” “Despacito” jumps from No. 9 to No. 4 in its 15th week. “Macarena” spent 20 consecutive weeks in the top five in the summer and fall of 1996, including 14 weeks at No. 1.

“Despacito” (which translates to “slowly” in English) has the lighthearted summer fun vibe that made “Macarena” Billboard‘s Song of the Summer for 1996. “Despacito” had climbed as high as No. 44 on the Hot 100 before the remix featuring Bieber was released. That immediately kicked it into high gear. (In much the same way, the pop-oriented Bayside Boys remix is what made “Macarena” take off.)

“Despacito” is the first top 20 hit for both Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, both of whom were born in Puerto Rico. Fonsi’s previous highest-charting single was “No Me Doy Por Vencido,” which peaked at No. 90. Daddy Yankee had cracked the top 40 twice before, with “Gasolina” (No. 32 in 2005) and “Rompe” (No. 24 in 2006).

This is the third single featuring Bieber to crack the top five in the past year. It follows Major Lazer’s “Cold Water” (which reached No. 2) and DJ Snake’s “Let Me Love You” (which hit No. 4).

“Despacito” sold 86K digital copies this week, which allows it to jump to No. 1 on Hot Digital Songs. The song tops that chart in its 15th week of release. It’s the slowest-rising No. 1 since Lady Gaga’s “Million Reasons,” which topped the chart in its 19th week earlier this year, after she included  the song in her half-time performance at the Super Bowl. “Despacito” is Bieber’s seventh No. 1 digital hit.

Top Songs

Bruno Mars lands his seventh No. 1 hit on the Hot 100 as “That’s What I Like” jumps to the top spot in its 15th week. Only two other artists have amassed seven or more No. 1 hits since January 2010. Rihanna leads the pack with nine, followed by Katy Perry with eight. (Mars is far and away the leader among male artists in this decade. Runners-up are Justin Bieber, Drake, Eminem and The Weeknd, with three No. 1 hits each.)

At least one single from each of Mars’ three studio albums has reached No. 1. Mars is the first artist since Katy Perry to pull at least one No. 1 hit from each of his or her first three major-label full-length studio albums.

Two of Mars’ seven No. 1 hits mention sex. “That’s What I Like” includes the line, “Sex by the fire at night.” In “Locked out of Heaven,” Mars sang, “Cause your sex takes me to paradise.”

The poppy “That’s What I Like” also logs its fifth non-consecutive week at No. 1 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.

Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” holds at No. 2 in its 16th week. The song logged 12 weeks at No. 1.

Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble.” drops from No. 1 to No. 3 in its fourth week. Lamar has a second song in the top 10 for the second straight week.  “DNA.” drops from No. 4 to No. 7 in its second week.

Future’s “Mask Off” holds at No. 5 in its 10th week.

“Something Just Like This” by The Chainsmokers and Coldplay rebounds from No. 8 to No. 6 in its 10th week. The song peaked at No. 3. This is the 52nd consecutive week that The Chainsmokers have had one or more songs in the top 10. Only Katy Perry has had more continuous weeks in the top 10—69 in 2010-11.

KYLE’s “iSpy” (featuring Lil Yachty) drops from No. 6 to No. 8 in its 18th week. The song peaked at No. 4.

Lil Uzi Vert’s “XO TOUR Llif3” rebounds from No. 10 to No. 9 in its fifth week. The song has climbed as high as No. 8.

Selena Gomez lands her seventh top 10 hit as “It Ain’t Me,” a collabo with Kygo, jumps from No. 13 to No. 10 in its 11th week. A Bob Dylan song with a similar title, “It Ain’t Me Babe,” was a top 10 hit in 1965 for The Turtles.

“Stay” by Zedd & Alessia Cara drops out of the top 10 this week.

Clean Bandit lands its third No. 1 hit on The Official U.K. Singles Chart with “Symphony” (featuring Zara Larsson). Both of the trio’s previous U.K. No. 1 hits—”Rather Be” (featuring Jess Glynne) and “Rockabye”—made the top 10 on the Hot 100. Will the trio continue that streak? Stay tuned.

Top Albums

Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. is No. 1 on The Billboard 200 for the second straight week. Lamar’s previous studio album, To Pimp a Butterfly, also spent its first two weeks on top in March 2015. (Profanity Watch:DAMN. equals the showing of Avril Lavigne’s The Best Damn Thing, which spent its first two weeks at No. 1 in May 2007.)

Drake’s More Life inches up from No. 3 to No. 2 in its sixth week. It spent its first three weeks at No. 1.

Ed Sheeran’s ÷ inches up from No. 4 to No. 3 in its eighth week. It spent its first two weeks on top. The album logs its eighth week at No. 1 on The Official U.K. Albums Chart. This equals Sheeran’s previous album, x, which spent its first eight weeks at No. 1 in the U.K. before being dislodged. (subsequently returned to No. 1 for four additional weeks on top.)

Incubus’ eighth studio album, 8, debuts at No. 4. It’s the band’s fifth consecutive studio album to crack the top five. The band has also reached the top 10 with a compilation album and an EP.

Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic jumps from No. 7 to No. 5 in its 23rd week. The album has never ranked lower than No. 7. It logged four weeks at No. 2.

The Chainsmokers’ Memories…Do Not Open dips from No. 5 to No. 6 in its third week. The album debuted at No. 1.

The Moana soundtrack dips from No. 6 to No. 7 in its 23rd week. The album peaked at No. 2. The album is No. 1 for the ninth week on Top Soundtracks. That’s the longest run at No. 1 on that chart since Suicide Squad: The Album had 13 weeks on top last year. It’s the longest run for a soundtrack to a Walt Disney film since Frozen amassed 44 weeks on top in 2013-14.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix, Vol. 2 debuts at No. 8. The soundtrack to first movie in this franchise debuted at No. 3 and spent the next two weeks at No. 1. The new album was digital-only in its first week. The CD was released on April 28. The movie opens May 5. Expect the album to kick in after the movie opens.

Future’s FUTURE dips from No. 8 to No. 9 in its 10th week. The album debuted at No. 1.

The Weeknd’s Starboy rebounds from No. 14 to No. 10 in its 22nd week. The album spent five non-consecutive weeks at No. 1.

Three albums drop out of the top 10. John Mayer’s The Search for Everything dives from No. 2 to No. 23. The Beauty and the Beast soundtrack drops from No. 9 to No. 25. Fate of the Furious: The Album drops from No. 10 to No. 18. (Fate of the Furious was No. 1 at the box-office for the third consecutive weekend.)

Three veteran artists who are accustomed to making the top 10 with studio albums fall short of the top 10 this week. Brad Paisley’s Love and War debuts at No. 12. Barry Manilow’s This Is My Town: Songs of New York opens at No. 19. Sheryl Crow’s Be Myself debuts at No. 22. The last eight studio albums by both Paisley and Crow made the top 10, as did the last four studio albums by Manilow. A big reason for these sub-par openings is Billboard‘s (and the music industry’s) embrace in December 2014 of “multi-metric” measurement of album popularity. All three of these albums made the top 10 on the lower-profile chart that strictly measures album sales. They came up short on The Billboard 200, where digital track sales and streaming are factored in. These are the first studio albums by all three of these artists since the changeover in chart methodology. (I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that they liked the chart better when it was compiled the old way!)

Paisley’s album enters Top Country Albums at No. 1, displacing Keith Urban’s Ripcord. It’s Paisley’s ninth consecutive studio album to top the country chart. (If Love and War seems like a familiar title, you’re onto something. Tamar Braxton took an album with that same title to No. 2 on The Billboard 200 in September 2013. Angie Stone released an album with a similar title, The Art of Love & War, a decade ago. It reached No. 11 in October 2007.)

This Is My Town: Songs of New York is Manilow’s 19th top 20 album. The album includes a new version of “New York City Rhythm,” which Manilow introduced on his 1975 album Tryin’ to Get the Feeling.

Be Myself is Crow’s first studio album to fall short of the top 10. All eight of her previous studio albums made the top 10.

Kendrick Lamar’s 2013 breakthrough album good kid, m.A.A.d. city drops from No. 27 to No. 35 in its 235th week. The album is No. 1 on Top Catalog Albums for the fourth non-consecutive week.

Coming Attractions: Look for Gorillaz’s Humanz to debut right around No. 2 next week. Also seemingly headed for debuts in the top 10: Mary J. Blige’s Strength of a Woman, John Mellencamp featuring Carlene Carter’s Sad Clowns and Hillbillies and Willie Nelson’s God’s Problem Child.