Ariana Grande Passes Taylor Swift for Most No. 1 Song Debuts

Ariana Grande Surpasses Taylor Swift as the Female Artist with the Most Songs to Debut at No. 1
Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images;Buda Mendes/TAS23/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management

Ariana Grande reigns over Taylor Swift — for now.

Grande, 30, picked up another accolade when “We Can’t Be Friends (Wait for Your Love),” a song from her new album, Eternal Sunshine, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. It was Grande’s seventh song to come in at the top spot, pushing her past Swift, 34, and every other female artist in history.

Grande’s list of songs debuting at No. 1 now includes “Thank U, Next” and “7 Rings” (from Thank U, Next); “Stuck With U” and “Rain on Me,” her 2020 collabs with Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga, respectively; “Positions,” the title track from her 2020 album and the first two singles from Eternal Sunshine, “Yes, And?” and “We Can’t Be Friends (Wait for Your Love).”

If there is any consolation for Swifties, Swift will likely tie Grande when she releases the first single from her upcoming album, The Tortured Poets Department, which drops on Friday, April 19.

The love Swift’s fans have for her music will likely propel any new song to the top, meaning she’ll add to her six No. 1 debuts: 2014’s “Shake It Off,” “Cardigan” and “Willow” from 2020’s Folklore and Evermore, “All Too Well (Taylor’s Version),” “Anti-Hero” from Midnights and Swift’s most recent No. 1 debut, “Is It Over Now?”

Both Swift and Grande are chasing Drake, who has nine No. 1 song debuts. His list of chart-toppers includes solo songs “God’s Plan, “Nice for What,” “Toosie Slide” and “What’s Next,” the collabs “Way 2 Sexy” with Future and Young Thug, Future’s “Wait for U” (featuring Tems), “Jimmy Cooks” with 21 Savage from Honestly, Nevermind and his singles from For All the Dogs, “Slime You Out” (featuring SZA) and “First Person Shooter” (featuring J. Cole).

Swift and Drake, 37, also hold an edge over Grande in terms of overall Hot 100 No. 1s. “We Can’t Be Friends” is Grande’s ninth song to reach No. 1 on the Billboard chart. Meanwhile, Swift already has 11 (including “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” “Blank Space,” “Bad Blood,” “Look What You Made Me Do” and “Cruel Summer.”)

Drake has 13 songs that have reached the No. 1 position, including two with Rihanna (“Work,” “What’s My Name?”), “One Dance” with Wizkid and Kyla and his solo song “In My Feelings.”

On Monday, March 18, Grande expressed her gratitude for having the No. 1 song and album in America. “It’s impossible to put into words what I’ve been feeling this week,” she wrote via Instagram. “[Eternal Sunshine] is most special to me for many reasons and just holds so much. Sharing it has re-opened a lot of little and big feelings alike and it has been an emotional week in many ways.”

“But your overwhelmingly loving response to it all has made me feel such joyful, human connection and comfort,” she added. “Just wanted to say I love and appreciate you all more than one can say and thank you again. It is, as it always has been, my greatest honor to grow with you.”

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