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On the Charts: Katy Perry Scores Again

Plus: Michael Bublé steals Christmas from Justin Bieber

November 16, 2011 3:50 PM ET
Katy Perry performs during her "California Dreams" tour
Katy Perry performs during her "California Dreams" tour
Kevin Mazur/WireImage

WINNER OF THE WEEK: The big chart story this week is rapper Mac Miller, whose independent debut Blue Slide Park sold 144,000 copies and hit Number One on the Billboard album charts. But we're more intrigued by the latest single action from Katy Perry – last Friday, she put out the video for "The One That Got Away," the sixth single from Teenage Dream, and it's killer. Perry, in old-lady makeup, sits on her bed staring into space as she flashes back to the "younger" Perry in a goofy romance with actor Diego Luna. The whole thing ends tragically with the perfect closing: Johnny Cash singing "You Are My Sunshine" from his 2003 album Unearthed III: Redemption Songs. Anyway, the video premiered on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and has since hit more than 12.4 million views. What's extraordinary is that even before that, radio was picking it up, boosting the single 38 spots up the Ultimate Chart, from 63 to 25. Look for this one to have serious longevity, given Perry's hit history this year and the video boost.
 
LOSER OF THE WEEK: Justin Bieber. His Under the Mistletoe dropped from Number One to Number Six this week, shedding 54 percent (97,000 total this week). On the flip side, Michael Bublé's Christmas surged from Number Eight to Number Two, selling 123,000 copies and gaining 38 percent in sales. Bublé is clearly on the verge of dominating Christmas season. Lucky for him, holiday albums are traditional sales phenomena, as opposed to downloads – Bublé is just Number Seven on this week's iTunes chart, and Bieber didn't place at all. Why? Our guess is that most people still have CD players in their living rooms, where they decorate trees and such, and probably haven't gotten around to syncing old-school hi-fis with iTunes and Spotify. Thus, holiday music is somewhat invulnerable to music piracy, which is why record companies love to release as much of it as possible during this time of year. As to why Bublé and not Bieber? No idea.
 
A HEARTY WOBBLE DEE WOBBLE DEE WOP TO YOU, TOO: And finally, a word about a$$es. Detroit rapper Big Sean's "Dance (A$$)" is one of the most hilariously, gloriously cynical videos we've seen in a long time – it's all bling, booze and scantily clad ladies, plus the word "ass" repeated like a mantra and superimposed in various languages. The remix video contains a lengthy cameo from Nicki Minaj, who gamely shakes her own you-know-what (squeezed into Union Jack shorts, among other things) and actually elevates the video for a few seconds with her bug-eyed power-rapping. It's up to 10.5 million views on YouTube and Ultimate Chart ranks it Number 14, up from Number 29 the previous week. We don't expect it to hit bottom (sorry) soon.

LAST WEEK: Justin Bieber Annihilates Loutallica

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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