Monday, June 17, 2024

Justin Bieber Mystery Success: Scant Radio Play Anywhere, All Year, Not Even in Canada


I must say, I am mystified. I assumed Justin Bieber’s records were being played somewhere in the world on the radio. It turns out they’re not being played anywhere in the U.S. and barely have been all year. In fact, Bieber’s records aren’t even played in Canada, his own country. His success and the amount of attention he gets every day is even more of a mystery than ever. He’s the Kardashian of pop music– famous for no reason.

The stats come from Nielsen’s All Access Mediabase website. They monitor radio play in the U.S. and Canada. They know every time a record has been spun on a major radio station in every genre– pop, country, R&B, hip hop etc.

Unless someone is playing Bieber and not reporting it — which is impossible–the Anne Murray lookalike has no presence on any airwaves.

In the U.S. to date this year, he has one record in the top 50 spins. His Nikki Minaj record “Beauty and the Beat” is at number 32 in US. In Canada, “B&B” is at number 50 for the year. Bieber has no records in the current top 40 list of 50 most played records despite releasing a slew of singles in the last month.

So the question is: what’s up with all this? Is Bieber a freak of the music biz? His appeal is live only, to pre-teens. He may be playing lounges in Las Vegas before he turns 21 unless he gets serious in some way about the records. So far they’re like loss leader souvenirs. And obviously there’s no massive outcry by his fans to hear him on the radio.

You can see the list below. Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, whose singles “Applause” and “Roar,” are a little further down the list because they were released just in the last six weeks.

The top 10 hits by radio play on top 40 stations for 2013 to date are:

1 MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS Can’t Hold Us f/Ray Dalton 304,749
2 TAYLOR SWIFT I Knew You Were Trouble 290,030
3 ROBIN THICKE Blurred Lines f/Pharrell/T.I. 289,244
4 JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE Mirrors 286,653
5 SWEDISH HOUSE MAFIA Don’t You Worry Child 284,595
6 MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS Thrift Shop f/Wanz 283,633
7 RIHANNA Stay f/Mikky Ekko 277,453
8 ZEDD Clarity f/Foxes 264,072
9 BRUNO MARS When I Was Your Man 258,405
10 PINK Just Give Me a Reason 257,850
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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