“Perfect Illusion” Update

“Perfect Illusion” was the 8th most-heard song overall on all of US radio during its first day of release, with 17 million Kworb-standard impressions. Radio impressions for subsequent days have been around 3.2M.

Primarily on the strength of first-day promotional airplay, “Perfect Illusion” debuted on the Pop Songs (Top 40) and HAC (Adult Pop Songs) weekly radio airplay charts for the tracking week ending Saturday, September 10th at #s 31 and 32 respectively.

NOTE: Sales and streaming are tracked on a Thursday – Thursday basis, and the two days of radio airplay were not alone enough to spark a debut on the Hot 100 for the tracking week that Billboard just reported on yesterday. This means that the initial promotional radio airplay spike will not count towards Gaga’s Hot 100 debut ranking. 

“Perfect Illusion” currently ranks at #4 on iTunes, and its sales decline appears to have slowed if not completely stabilized. Kworb.net currently estimates 95,000 first-week sales. Although not close to record-shattering, this is a robust figure that is consistent with the recent debuts of other big hits by major artists. It is comparable, for example, to the debut of Sia’s “The Greatest,” which is already clearly another huge hit. Of course, it is also comparable to the debut sales of Britney Spears’ “Make Me Ooh,” which subsequently stalled at radio.

“Perfect Illusion” currently ranks at #68 on the running weekly radio airplay chart. Given current trends, it should peak just inside the top 50 before its first-day promotional airplay drops off of the running tally.

On Spotify, “Perfect Illusion” was streamed 465,095 times in the United States on Monday, down from a peak of 594,798 on Friday, but up from a low of 422,776 on Sunday. It received 500,663 streams on Saturday. It is currently ranked at its low point of #30 on US Spotify. It debuted and peaked at #21. “Perfect Illusion” is currently at #32 on the Global Spotify chart with 1,432,210 streams on Monday.

By comparison, Sia’s “The Greatest” ranks at #11 on Global Spotify with 2,420,304 streams, and #15 on US Spotify with 613,759 streams. The #1 song on US and Global Spotify received 2,216,474 streams and 6,337,912 streams, respectively.

Gaga seems to have the strongest performance in Latin America and Mainland Europe. Here are the iTunes and Spotify positions for “Perfect Illusion” in every country in the world right now:

Perfect Illusion


Adam Lambert enters Billboard’s Pop Songs Top 20

As he declines from his #64 peak on the Hot 100 to #67, Adam Lambert adds a new plaudit to the “Ghost Town” section of his resume. In his 18th week, he finally reaches the Top 20 on Pop Songs (rising #22-#20), joining the airplay neighborhood of “Fight Song,” “Levels,” and “Bad Blood,” in that order.

“Ghost Town” had earlier found Top 20 success in the Adult Pop format, rising into the Top 20 and then hovering between #18 and #21 for about 12 weeks. “Ghost Town” also rises to a new peak of #17 in its 20th week on the Adult Pop Songs chart.

What is driving Lambert’s radio success this week?

Unfortunately, it is not a sudden spike in airplay. In fact, Lambert is currently facing decreasing airplay, after his song peaked just over one week ago. Kworb.net’s overall radio airplay chart shows Lambert with 32.141 million weekly audience impressions, substantially lower than his 35.011 million peak. Instead, the rise is due primarily to older songs falling faster or being shifted to “recurrent” status, and therefore no longer counting on the major airplay charts.

“Ghost Town”‘s sales have seen a slight uptick this weekend, as have his youtube views, but I attribute that to buzz surrounding his first ever performance of “Ghost Town” with Queen. In general, however, all three metrics seem to be declining in unison.


“Ghost Town” has charted on the US Hot 100 for 14 weeks now. It has spent 20 weeks charting on Adult Pop Songs, and 18 weeks charting on Pop Songs. It has now reached the Top 20 on both radio formats. The song has powered Lambert to his 3rd consecutive Top 5 album on the Billboard 200 after American Idol. It has achieved international success, charting as high as #2 in Australia, #14 in Germany (so far; #8 on German iTunes currently), and #47 globally.

The song has definitively been more commercially successful than the single’s from Lambert’s previous album, Trespassing, and it has reintroduced Lambert to an American radio audience as more than just some guy who was on American Idol once. It speaks to Lambert’s bright future in the world of Pop Star.

Watch “Ghost Town” here.

Adam Lambert finally reaches Top 20 on pop radio spins per mediabase

With a slight week-over week decline in spins, “Ghost Town” finally makes an appearance in the Top 20 pop songs (by spins) according to mediabase.

While “Ghost Town” remains one of the 25 most-shazammed songs in the world, it has already peaked in the United States at #64, and it is now facing predictably declining sales, streaming, and airplay.

Still, the song has been considered a hit, peaking in the Top 20 of both pop and adult pop formats, and garnering substantial and sustained radio airplay, streams, and sales over a long chart life. The song wraps up this last achievement after having re-established Lambert as a serious, long-term commercial artist capable of producing radio hits. After television acting roles, a critically-acclaimed global tour as the frontman of Queen, and a third Top Five album in a row, it has finally become clear to the world that Adam Lambert will never fade into the post-Idol obscurity that haunts so many of the show’s other contestants.