UK’s New Chart Rules Result In Fans Falling All Over Themselves To Repurchase Songs

Feb 7th, 2007 // 3 Comments

As we’ve mentioned, the new rules governing the British singles charts allow any highly downloaded song, no matter how old, to be eligible for inclusion in that week’s top list. This has inspired some intrepid Brits to start an online lobbying campaign:

So, we decided to start this website so that together we can put right some wrongs. With your help, we plan to identify the songs we think were a number one hit, or should have been number one, but were kept from the top spot by some naf song, or possibly something just as good that happened to come out at precisely the same time.

We start Monday 12th February with Oasis “Roll With It”. Released 14th August 1995, it made number two, pipped to the post in the famous Britpop battle by Blur with their single “Country House”.

While we think this idea is cute, in a way–nothing says “fight the power” like plunking down money for a song you probably already own–we have to wonder if there aren’t more deserving recipients of this charity than Oasis. Take Morrissey, whose “Irish Blood, English Heart” was shut out from the top spot by Eamon and Frankee‘s seemingly endless karaoke-bar throwdown, or even the Darkness, who had to play second fiddle to the freaking Black Eyed Peas. Really, where is the love?

IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN NUMBER 1 [itshouldhavebeennumber1.co.uk]

  1. brasstax

    I don’t like where this is going.

  2. Chris Molanphy

    The interesting thing about the British chart change is it offers a chance to see what would happen here on the U.S. charts if Billboard didn’t apply all of its “recurrent” rules.

    Pretty much every major Billboard chart – from singles to albums to radio airplay in all formats – employs some rule forbidding records/songs older than, say, two years from charting once they fall below a certain threshold. For example, on albums, any disc more than two years (104 weeks) old that falls below #100 is automatically shunted to the “Top Pop Catalog” chart, and there it lives forevermore. If they didn’t do this, Dark Side of the Moon and Zoso would be parked in the top half of the album chart every week, year after year. Part of me thinks it would be interesting to see where those old albums place against the new stuff every week; but the other part of me wants there to be enough room on the chart for the Postal Service to make the bottom rungs of the top 200.

    On the adult-contemporary radio chart, songs move so friggin’ slowly that they retire tracks that fall below the Top *10*.

    Basically, if the Brits find their charts become too ridiculous and useless – i.e., no longer a useful yardstick for current music – they will employ similar rules. Some people will howl that this is artificial manipulation of the charts that’s not reflective of the public’s taste, and while I am sympathetic to the idea of a “pure” chart, believe me, seeing random old shit clog up the chart week after week gets old fast. I’m starting to see the wisdom of the Billboard approach.

  3. sXenester

    You’re out of your element, Donny.

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