On May 31 2003, Madonna’s American Life single hit #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Club Play chart in the USA, spending one week at the top.
If you could go back in time and change one thing about the American Life single release, what would you change?
On May 14 2015, Madonna’s Ghosttown became her 45th #1 dance club hit, breaking George Strait’s record of total number ones.
Here’s what Billboard had to say about Madonna’s achievement:
The Queen of Pop reigns with Ghosttown giving her the most No. 1s of any artist on a single Billboard chart.
The Queen of Pop is now unequaled chart royalty. Madonna makes momentous Billboard chart history, as she now has the most No. 1s ever, 45, by an act on a singular Billboard chart. She earns her 45th No. 1 on Dance Club Songs, where Ghosttown lifts 3-1.
With the coronation, Madonna passes another icon, George Strait, who’s logged 44 No. 1s on Hot Country Songs.
“Thanks to all my fans on and off the dance floor,” Madonna said in an exclusive statement to Billboard. “I’ll always be your partner.”
With her 45th leader on Dance Club Songs, which measures reports submitted by a national sample of club DJs, Madonna pulls further ahead of runners-up Beyonce and Rihanna. In fact, Madonna has tallied more No. 1s as they have combined: 22 each. (The chart launched as a national survey in the Billboard issue dated Aug. 28, 1976.) Madonna bests Strait (still, and always, the King of Country), who’s sent 44 singles to No. 1 on Hot Country Songs between 1982 and 2009. He first reigned with “Fool Hearted Memory” (Aug. 28, 1982) and most recently ruled with “River of Love” (April 18, 2009).
On April 30 1983, Madonna’s second single – the double A-side Burning Up/Physical Attraction – moved into the Top 10 on Billboard’s Dance/Disco Top 80 chart (now known as Hot Dance/Club Play), leaping from #18 to #9.
Interestingly, the release charted as Physical Attraction/Burning Up throughout its run on the Dance chart. When two songs are promoted together to dance clubs, Billboard will generally position the track that earns the higher number of spins first in its Dance chart entry.
The same Billboard issue also saw some early radio support for Madonna, as New York City’s WKTU-FM featured Physical Attraction among their top playlist adds for the week.
On April 9 1983, Madonna’s Burning Up debuted at #66 on Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in the USA.
Is Burning Up one of your favourite Madonna songs?
I grew up with my older sister first loving the Like A Virgin-era, so I wasn’t always aware of it. When I began my adventure into Madonna fandom, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that there was an edgier Madonna before the likes of Material Girl and Dress You Up. I LOVE the video for this song and the song itself — and I’m so glad that she’s embraced it LIVE over the last few years. – Jay
On April 1 2000, Madonna’s cover of American Pie hit #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Club Play chart in the USA.
On November 7 1998, Sky Fits Heaven peaked at #41 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Club Play chart in the US.
Although the song was not released commercially or promotionally in North America, remixes by Sasha and Victor Calderone released abroad on the Drowned World/Substitute For Love single managed to garner enough club play in the U.S. to merit a six-week run on the chart (plus one week on the Hot Dance Music Breakouts chart).
A remix video of Sky Fits Heaven (Sasha Remix) featuring outtakes from the Ray Of Light music video was serviced to select clubs, and this non-traditional form of promotion may have contributed to its chart placement.
On November 6 1982, Madonna lost her chart virginity with her very first appearance in Billboard magazine, as Everybody made its debut on the Hot Dance/Club chart (then titled Dance/Disco Top 80). Fittingly foreshadowing her long-term, record-shattering success on the Dance chart, it was the week’s highest new entry.
Dance music commentator Brian Chin also gave a favorable nod to the song in the same chart’s editorial sidebar. Considering Sire Records’ initially stunted marketing strategy had its limited bets set on a faceless, imageless Madonna shrouded in mystery, Chin’s miscasting of her as “a young New York duo produced by DJ Mark Kamins” is humourously forgivable, if not ironic in retrospect.
We would venture to predict that Madonna was likely less amused by the gaffe. Enter Liz Rosenberg? 😉