The U.K. Really Likes Reality TV Pop (Like, Even More Than “Umbrella”)
This weekend the BBC unveiled the best-selling singles of 2007, and not one but two contestants from U.K. reality TV singing contest X-Factor, with Leona Lewis’ “Bleeding Love” even outselling Rihanna’s “Umbrella,” a tune that might have been inescapable for Americans this summer but haunted rainsoaked Brit listeners’ dreams. The Top 20 is after the jump, but first we gotta ask: a comedy version of the Proclaimers’ “(I’m Gonna Be) 500 Miles” in the Top 10? Really? Hang your heads, people of Great Britain. Hang them lower than your standards for novelty pop tunes.
THE GOOD: Idolator’s beloved Sugababes at No. 6, the somewhat overlooked (in the U.S., obviously) Amy Winehouse collaboration from that much-maligned Mark Ronson album at No. 9, and of course “Umbrella” in the runner-up slot.
THE BAD: Inflicting the wussy Braffery/wussy mall emo of the Fray and Plain White T’s on England now makes us about even for the whole unfortunate James Blunt episode.
THE WHAAA?: Both Leona Lewis and Leon Jackson–the 2006 and 2007 X-Factor winners, respectively–finish in the Top 5 despite their singles only having been released in December. That’s got to make every recent American Idol winner, even the successful ones, briefly wish they had been born across the Atlantic.
1. Leona Lewis – Bleeding Love
2. Rihanna ft. Jay-Z – Umbrella
3. Mika – Grace Kelly
4. Leon Jackson – When You Believe
5. Take That – Rule The World
6. Sugababes – About You Now
7. Timbaland ft. Keri Hilson & DOE – The Way I Are
8. The Proclaimers ft. Brian Potter & Andy Pipkin – (I’m Gonna Be) 500 Miles
9. Mark Ronson ft. Amy Winehouse – Valerie
10. Kaiser Chiefs – Ruby
11. The Fray – How To Save A Life
12. Beyonce & Shakira – Beautiful Liar
13. Gwen Stefani ft. Akon – The Sweet Escape
14. Plain White T’s – Hey There Delilah
15. Sean Kingston – Beautiful Girls
16. Timbaland ft. One Republic – Apologize
17. Kate Nash – Foundations
18. Take That – Shine
19. Kanye West – Stronger
20. Avril Lavigne – Girlfriend