Knock Three Times

What was it I said last week? How the hell did Sabrina Carpenter get so big so suddenly? Or words to that effect. Well, perhaps we need to double down on it as she just got even bigger.

A new entry at No.3 last week, her latest release Please Please Please hands her a second No.1 single in as many months as it leapfrogs its two immediate rivals to establish a comfortable lead at the head of the market. With her own Espresso holding firm at No.2 it means Sabrina becomes one of only a tiny handful of artists to hold down positions 1 and 2 on the singles chart at the same time. Of those handful fewer still are women - Madonna was the first to pull off the trick with Into The Groove and Holiday in August 1985, to be followed generations later by the likes of Taylor Swift and Ariana Grande. Of them all Sabrina Carpenter is far and away the youngest - just a month past her 25th birthday.

Her two No.1 singles have come in rapid succession - separated only by the two week run of Eminem's Houdini at the top. That equals the record for the quickest pair of debut No.1 hits first set by Jess Glynne who also only had two weeks between her vocal roles on Clean Bandit's Rather Be and Route 94's My Love back in 2014. Glynne was actually very unlucky not to have had a 1 and 2 on the singles chart of her own - Rather Be stuck at No.3 for My Love's solitary week at the top. And she was herself only 24 at the time.

Back to Sabrina though and Please Please Please is a notable title for a No.1 song. Only four songs entitled simply "Please" have made the Top 75, with U2's 1997 single the highest charting of these with a peak of No.7. The eternal row over the chart placing of the Beatles' Please Please Me notwithstanding, the only track with at least two "pleases" in the title to make No.1 was McFly's Please Please which was a double a-side with their cover of Queen's Don't Stop Me Now and topped the charts in 2006. Please Please Please is only the fifth No.1 single with at least one ocurrence of the word in the title. Cliff Richard's Please Don't Tease was the first in 1960; Olly Murs with Please Don't Let Me Go was the last until today, way back in 2010.

Final bit of nerdery for now - only one other No.1 single has featured the same word repeated three times as its title. Boom Boom Boom by The Outhere Brothers in 1995.

We All Sing Along Like Before

Dave, I have to apologise. Because as epic as things were last week there are slim pickings this time around. Another of those weeks where either the industry as a whole goes "bothered" and doesn't release anything of note or where the British public go "we're good thanks" when offered the chance to shake their playlists up a little. This week's Top 10 singles are largely the same as last week's Top 10 singles, save for Billie Eilish's Lunch tumbling to No.12 leaving a space clear for former No.1 single Fortnight from Taylor Swift to reassert itself at No.10. And that fact alone means that Austin finally climbs off its rung, ending that five consecutive week run at No.10 to climb back to No.9.

Speaking of Taylor Swift (altogether now: "we frequently do!") it is perhaps a little strange to not see her closer to the top of the singles charts during the Eras tour's parade around Britain's biggest stadiums but she does at least have the honour of remaining at the summit of the Official UK Albums chart. Completing a seventh week in total at No.1 The Tortured Poets Department is now the longest-running No.1 album of the decade and the first album to spend as long at the top of the charts since The Greatest Showman soundtrack accumulated what seems to modern sensibilities an eye-watering 35 weeks at the top of the charts back in 2018.

Please. Climb.

Now you know how I roll, sometimes I'll obsess repeatedly about a particular single as it edges its way up the charts, sometimes I'll fail to spot something embarking on an extended chart run. And perhaps in the latter category comes Benson Boone's Slow It Down which charted back in March as a companion piece to the No.1 smash Beautiful Things but which has now spent the past 12 weeks slowly but surely drifting its way up, to the point where it has now properly overtaken its illustrious predecessor. This week the single edges to a brand new peak of No.15, five weeks after it first appeared to peak a place below and the latest stage in a Top 20 run which has now seen it occupy every rung of the ladder between 15 and 19. I'd say this is one to still keep an eye on, but knowing my luck now we've called attention to the single this will turn out to be its last hurrah.

Gleaming

You may have noticed there's a football tournament on. Euro 2024 occupies the hearts and minds of the nation, not to mention the TV schedules, so it almost stands to reason that the now celebrated England anthem Three Lions should be back in the Top 40. The 1996 hit by Baddiel, Skinner and The Lightning Seeds has now turned into something of a seasonal perennial in the streaming era as everyone dives to play the anthem - at least up to the point where England get eliminated from the tournament.

The chart history of the song now reads:

1996 (Euros): No.1
1998 (World Cup): No.1 in a re-recorded version
2002 (World Cup): No.16
2006 (World Cup): No.9
2010 (World Cup): No.10
2012 (Euros): No.77
2014 (World Cup): No.27
2016 (Euros): No.84
2018 (World Cup): No.1
2021 (Euros): No.4
2022 (World Cup): No.20

That last run of course came in December when the Qatar World Cup was played in the northern hemisphere winter for the first and only time, meaning the single had to also compete alongside Christmas songs and so had its chart run suppressed.

Now for 2024 the hit single is back again, landing at No.32 just as the tournament begins. Of course by Tuesday England will either be out of the competition or limping on to the knockout stages. So this may or may not be the last we see of the single this time around.

Chappell Is Hot

And speaking of Masterton's obsessions, Chappel Roan's exquisite Good Luck Babe continues to edge its own way forward and is now at a new peak of No.13. As mentioned previously, it has been joined in the singles chart by two of her older tracks, one of which Hot To Go has now grabbed a Top 40 position of its own as it rises to No.39. It isn't a 'new' entry by any means but we will take it. Other than Three Lions the highest new entry of the week is Devil Is A Lie from Tommy Richman which tweaks our noses at No.48 - a companion hit to Million Dollar Baby which peaked at No.3 five weeks ago.

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