Going into the October 11-17 tracking week, the key question was whether Justin Bieber’s “What Do You Mean?” would leapfrog The Weeknd’s “The Hills” in pursuit of #1 on the Mediabase pop radio airplay chart.
“WDYM” has seemingly provided an affirmative answer. It received 10,322 pop plays during the first four days of the tracking week. That comfortably tops the 9,918 attained by “The Hills.”
Insofar as it is gaining airplay at a faster rate, “WDYM” will have no trouble retaining its advantage over the tracking week’s final three days.
A new question has since emerged.
Bieber’s “What Do You Mean?” has indeed leapfrogged “The Hills,” but will it be able to hold off Taylor Swift’s soaring “Wildest Dreams?”
The fifth single from Swift’s “1989” has itself overtaken “The Hills” and is now closing in on Bieber’s presumed #1 hit.
“Wildest Dreams” received 10,232 plays during the tracking week’s first four days. Up a healthy 17.3% from the previous week’s mark, the tally earns “Wildest Dreams” the #2 spot on Mediabase’s building chart.
It, moreover, brings “Wildest Dreams” within 90 spins of Bieber’s format-leading “What Do You Mean?” With three days remaining in the tracking week, closing such a gap is definitely possible.
Whether it will happen remains to be seen. Bieber’s tune can easily gain late-week steam, and Swift’s single might suffer late-week deceleration.
Clear, however, is that “What Do You Mean?” has legitimate competition for #1 on this week’s Mediabase pop chart. And the most intense flavor of that competition is not coming from The Weeknd’s “The Hills.”
— “The Hills,” “What Do You Mean?” and “Wildest Dreams” were respectively positioned at #2, #3, and #4 on this past week’s pop airplay chart. R. City’s “Locked Away (featuring Adam Levine),” which won last week’s race, is down to #4 on this week’s building chart.