What New Top 10 Hits May Be Arriving Soon on the Hot 100?


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The Contenders is a midweek column that looks at artists aiming for the top of the Billboard charts, and the strategies behind their efforts. This week (for the upcoming Billboard Hot 100 dated Jan. 20), there may not be a ton of suspense towards the top of the Hot 100 — with Jack Harlow, Taylor Swift and Tate McRae likely to be holding strong in the top three — but other rising songs are threatening to break into the top 10 for the first time.

Teddy Swims, “Lose Control” (SWIMS Int./Warner): One of the surprise slow-burn successes of late 2023, the big-voiced Teddy Swims‘ soulful crossover hit “Lose Control” continues to climb into the new year. “Control” spikes 48-12 on the Hot 100 this week — helped by streaming growth, as the song re-enters Streaming Songs at a new No. 10 peak this week, and also by impressive sales, with it rising to No. 2 on the Digital Song Sales chart. (Plus, the track has already hit the top 25 on Radio Songs.) A top 10 Hot 100 placement seems in reach for Swims in the next week or two as folks continue to discover the song for the first time — it’s also currently No. 2 on Shazam’s U.S. top 200 chart.

Nicki Minaj, “FTCU” (Young Money/Cash Money/Republic): Minaj‘s Pink Friday 2 breakout hit jumped from 53-17 on last week’s Hot 100 (dated Jan. 13) after the yearly deluge of holiday songs finally abated, and remains one of the early year’s strongest performers on streaming, holding in the top 10 of both Spotify’s and Apple Music’s daily U.S. listings. The big question for it will be radio: While top 40 seems to have jumped on the Lil Uzi Vert-featuring “Everybody” when that song initially had the most momentum from the PF2 tracklist — it debuts at No. 38 on Pop Airplay this week — “FTCU” has been slower to find its footing there, which it may ultimately need to do to make its mark on the top 10.

Noah Kahan, “Stick Season” (Mercury/Republic): Speaking of songs debuting on Pop Airplay this week: Alt-folk singer-songwriter Noah Kahan makes his second bow on the chart, following last year’s “Dial Drunk” with Post Malone, with his somehow-still-rising breakout hit “Stick Season.” The 18-month-old title track to his unstoppable 2022 album, “Season” continues to grow on streaming while now also impacting radio, entering at No. 37 on Pop Airplay and rising 54-19 on the Hot 100, passing “Drunk” (at No. 48 this week, after reaching No. 25 last summer) for his biggest hit as a lead artist now on the latter chart. If the momentum continues, Kahan’s first-ever Hot 100 top 10 berth could only be a couple weeks away.


Drake feat. Sexyy Red & SZA, “Rich Baby Daddy” (OVO Sound/Republic): While “First Person Shooter” with J. Cole and “IDGAF” with Yeat were the two most immediate hits from Drake‘s Billboard 200-topping For All the Dogs late last year, it appears that the most enduring single from the set will be the Sexyy Red- and SZA-featuring “Rich Baby Daddy.” The album’s most obviously hooky and upbeat highlight, “Daddy” returns to the Hot 100’s top 20 this week (52-16) after previously debuting at No. 11, and continues to regain ground on streaming — but is slipping a little on radio (21-29 on Radio Songs), where it may need to recapture its momentum to really make a push for the top 10.

Billie Eilish, “What Was I Made For?” (Darkroom/WaterTower/Interscope/Atlantic): Eilish‘s devastating piano ballad peaked at No. 14 at the height of Barbie-mania, and hung around the Hot 100 throughout most of the holiday season, before finally falling off the chart last week. It’s back at No. 20 this week, while holding as a solid performer on streaming and radio, and now it has a new source of adrenaline: awards season. The song just picked up best original song at the Golden Globes, and is up for five Grammys in February, with an Oscar nomination and possible win the following month also seeming practically inevitable.

Chris Stapleton, “White Horse” (Sound/Mercury Nashville): Not many might’ve expected Stapleton‘s searing Higher lead single to hang around as a major chart contender through the new year, but “White Horse” has remained impressively resilient, sticking on the Hot 100 through the holidays and jumping from 56-18 on this week’s listing. As the song re-enters Streaming Songs at No. 23, radio may again be the ticket for a top 10 entry: “Horse” is just outside the top five on the Country Airplay chart this week, as the fiery song perhaps remains a slightly awkward fit on the genre’s traditionally genial airwaves.

Xavi, “La Diabla” (Interscope): You have to dig a little deeper in the chart this week to find Mexican-American breakout star Xavi — he’s at No. 34 with “La Diabla,” and also No. 56 with “La Victima” — but chances feel pretty good that he’ll be a force to be reckoned with higher on the Hot 100 in the months to come. With all sorts of early-year buzz and eye-popping forward momentum on streaming, it’s pretty hard not to compare the Arizona-born, Interscope-signed 19-year-old with another música Mexicana breakout star who started to burst around this time last year.

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