There are certain artists whose music makes waves even before their release date. It’s safe to say that every time Drake drops a new project, the world tunes in. Certified Lover Boy (CLB) spent its first three weeks atop the Billboard 200 chart, and it’s clear Champagne Papi has nothing more to prove.
Yet, even though Drake’s made Billboard Hot 100 history by being the first artist to claim 90% of the top 10 positions, he’ll be disappointed not to have made it a clean sweep. Interestingly enough, it’s another Canadian pop icon by the name of Justin Bieber that’s held him back.
‘Certified Lover Boy’ by the numbers
Before Drake dropped his new joint, fans, critics, and the entirety of the pop/rap community were debating on whether the age of Drake was finally waning. Kanye West’s long-awaited album, Donda, had the biggest week of 2021 at the time by selling 309,000 album units, which had a lot of people doubting the Toronto-born rapper’s chart-topping ability.
Hardly a week later, in early September, Drake broke the internet and obliterated Donda‘s record with almost double the units moved. Pitchfork reports that Drake sold 613,000 album units. It was the biggest week for an album since Taylor Swift’s 2020 project, Folklore, which stood at 846,000 units sold.
Five weeks from its debut, Certified Lover Boy sits at a comfortable second spot on the Billboard 200. Taylor Swift retook the top spot thanks to her 2021 release Fearless (Taylor’s Version). This April-released project shot 156 positions back to the top due to the release of the vinyl edition of the album and signed CDs in Swift’s merch store.
Drake almost hits 10/10 with his new album
Drake is truly Mr. All Hits No Misses, as seen with Certified Lover Boy‘s domination of the charts. Billboard reports that in its Hot 100’s 63-year history, Drake is on another level as he becomes the first recording artist ever to claim nine of the top 10 slots from a single project. Additionally, it’s worth noting that the top five songs from the 10 belong to the Canadian crooner.
“Way 2 Sexy” led the Hot 100 and became Drake’s record-tying fifth debut entry at number one. His other songs that debuted at No. 1 were “What’s Next,” “Toosie Slide,” “Nice for What,” and “God’s Plan.” Ariana Grande is the only other artist matching him in this phenomenal achievement. After The Beatles, the OVO artist made history by becoming the second act to dominate the Hot 100’s top five spots in one week.
The one song that kept the famous Toronto native from hitting 10 out of 10 is “Stay” by The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber. It’s impressively been at the top of the charts for seven straight weeks and is currently the biggest song in the world (sorry, Drake). It ties with ‘Ebony & Ivory’ by Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder for the second spot on the longest chart-toppers list for songs recorded by two or more solo male leads.
More milestones reached by ‘Certified Lover Boy‘
Despite not making it 10 out of the top 10 in the Hot 100, Certified Lover Boy has been an incredible success. According to Forbes, Drake has crossed uncharted territory and become the first solo artist to have two songs debuting at numero uno on the Hot 100 in the same year. The only other musical act that can boast this show of popularity is the South Korean boy band BTS, who accomplished a similar feat.
His current album’s success has a section of fans pitting his chart-topping success against that of the man, the legend, Michael Jackson. The media outlet, Revolt, compares CLB‘s Hot 100 exploits with 1982’s Thriller, which deservedly landed seven songs on the Hot 100’s top 10. Whether Drake is more talented or more popular than MJ, that’s for the fans to decide.