Special Report

Most Dominant Reigns in Billboard History

Summer is unofficially bookended by Memorial Day and Labor Day, days when radio stations around the country air playlists of top songs by genre and decade. 24/7 Tempo is celebrating the summer season by identifying the most dominant reigns in Billboard history by reviewing historical data on song performance on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Artists were ranked based on the maximum number of songs that charted simultaneously on the Hot 100 at any given time. An artist’s top song during the week of their Billboard dominance was determined using an inverse point system wherein a week at No. 1 is worth 100 points, a week at No 2 is worth 99 points, and so on, up to a week at No. 100 worth one point. Chart data is current through May 21, 2022.

The results might come as a surprise to some people. At No. 1 is Drake, who had 27 hits on the Hot 100 on July 14, 2018. He’s had a total of 263 in the Hot 100, the most of any artist. At No. 2 is Taylor Swift, whose best showing on the Hot 100 was on November 27, 2021, when she was just one song behind Drake with 26 hits. However, her career total of 167 hits is far behind his. Behind Swift is Kanye West with 23 hits on September 11, 2021, tying Swift with a career total of 167.

Click here to see the most dominant reigns in Billboard history

One thing that’s very clear from our list is the popularity and dominance of rap. As well as Drake and Kanye, the top 10 includes artists such as Lil Wayne, Bad Bunny, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Baby, and Pop Smoke. And there are plenty of rappers farther down the list. (These are the rappers with the most hits.)

Country is also a popular genre. Taylor Swift began her career in Nashville before achieving crossover success as a pop artist. At No. 8 is controversial country singer Morgan Wallen, who had 19 hits on January 23, 2021 and a career total of 28. (Here are the 50 greatest country music stars of all time.)

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