Morgan Wallen fended off a surge from The Weeknd to stay at Number One on the Artists 500 chart despite continued controversy over his use of a racist slur.
While Wallen has faced plenty of industry backlash after video emerged of him using a racist slur, the success stemming from his hit second album, Dangerous: The Double Album, has hardly faltered. For the week of February 5th through the 11th, Wallen raked in 156.7 million streams to secure his fifth week atop the chart. That total is down from the 166 million streams Wallen garnered last week in the immediate aftermath of the controversy, and it’s closer to the 161.7 million he pulled in for the week of January 22nd through the 28th, just before the video leaked.
Wallen’s continued success was also enough to fend off a Super Bowl-sized surge from the Weeknd, who jumped from Number Eight with 69.6 million streams to Number Two with 123.7 million streams. While the Weeknd’s 2020 album After Hours and its singles, “Blinding Lights” and “Save Your Tears” continued to perform well, the Super Bowl halftime show and a new greatest hits collection, The Highlights, provided a bump for the Weeknd’s back catalogue as well. His 2015 hit “The Hills” re-entered the Top 100 Songs chart at Number 32 with 6.5 million streams, while his 2016 album Starboy and 2015 album Beauty Behind the Madness landed at Numbers 20 and 25 on the Top 200 Albums chart with 20.7 million and 19.3 million song streams, respectively.
The Rolling Stone Artists 500 chart ranks the most-streamed artists of the week in the United States, taking into account audio streams across an artist’s entire catalog during the tracking period. The chart does not include passive listening such as terrestrial radio or digital radio. The Artists 500 is updated daily, and each week Rolling Stone finalizes and publishes an official version of the chart, covering the seven-day period ending the previous Thursday.
The other big mover on the Artists 500 chart this week was rapper Pooh Shiesty, who jumped from Number 71 to Number Eight. The Memphis MC picked up 80.2 million song streams as his new project, Shiesty Season, debuted at Number Three on the RS200, racking up 74 million song streams to move 57,800 album units. Cardi B also saw a big jump, going from Number 94 to Number 25 with 39.8 million streams as her new single, “Up,” debuted at Number One on the RS100 with 20.4 million streams.
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