39 weeks released, 39 weeks on the charts, 39 weeks @ #1 - is someone gaming the Billboard charts...

… or is their methodology just flawed?

A lot of y’all have heard, I’m sure, the country-pop song “Meant to Be” by Bebe Rexha and Florida-Georgia line. It’s a nice piece of country pop, nothing too dissimilar from other songs of that genre, except for one thing:

This song has been #1 on the Billboard Country Music list since the week it was released, nearly 10 months ago, currently riding a 39 week streak.

Now, perhaps the song is an instant classic, perhaps Bebe and co are far more popular than I give them credit for, but then looking at the history of the songs which have stayed #1 the longest, I noticed 3 things:

  1. The period from 1946 to 1948 had a bunch of long-lasting #1 songs, and,
  2. Since Billboard added streaming totals to the mix in 2012, the top 3 “most popular” country songs ever have been released, with another 2 being added to the Wiki list, linked above, and,
  3. Florida-Georgia line is responsible for 3 of the post-2012 songs.

So, what’s your theory? Flawed methodology? Gaming the charts? Weakness in modern country music offerings which allows for songs to be popular longer than usual? FL/GA Line being the single greatest country supergroup to have ever existed (in the Wiki list they are the only non-solo act represented, except for a couple of duets)?

For me, I suspect the methodology is flawed and the addition of the streaming/YouTube views allows for a greater chance of the numbers being gamed. But I could be wrong and just not seeing the greatness that is FL/GA line.

Anyway, I hope the damn thing makes it to 52 weeks, just because. :stuck_out_tongue:

This article explains it pretty thoroughly. To summarize; the Billboard Country chart for the last few years has become much more pop oriented lately. Not only are they using streaming data, but they are using any airplay a country song gets–even on pop and rock stations. That gives a huge benefit to crossover songs; “Meant to Be” spent just one week on the country airplay chart. Before they changed the chart rules in 2012 Billboard’s country chart measured only airplay on country stations entirely. It’s effectively a different chart.