Even before announcing its existence, Adele’s new single “Easy on Me” was already the most anticipated 2021 release worldwide. And as it instantly became one of the top 10 hits in a series of charts, it exploded into the Hot 100, Billboard’s largest and most competitive singles charts, quite low. If Adele is so popular and the masses were eager to hear the tune, how is that possible?
“Easy on me” debuts in this week’s Hot 100 at no. 68. While this might seem like a surprisingly low position for the superstar, it speaks to how incredibly powerful he is.
The vast majority of albums and songs are released on Friday at midnight (EST), as it’s the start of the new US Watch Week.S. Artists want to give their tracks as much time as possible to build up feeds and sales so that the next image appears at the top of the Billboard charts. Against the grain, as she often does, Adele decided to release her single “Easy on Me” a few hours before the start of the new recording period. For most musicians that wouldn’t make much of a difference, if at all, but the same can’t be said for the Grammy and Oscar winner.
“Easy on me” arrived at 7:00 p.m. EST on Thursday, October 14 (midnight in London), and within hours was consumed in sufficient quantity to stand out as one of the most successful songs in the biggest market world music. The song sold just under 15,000 copies (according to information shared by MRC Data), making it the fourth best-selling song in America… after just five hours of availability.
All of these purchases, coupled with the immediate adoption of radio and staggering streaming numbers on platforms like YouTube and Spotify, helped propel “Easy on Me” into the Hot 100. The track starts at number 68, not after a week of activity, but less than a quarter of a day. Most artists are lucky enough to debut a song on the major singles charts in any position after a full seven days, while Adele only needs a few hours.
Next Monday (October 25), Billboard is expected to announce that “Easy on Me” has dropped from #68 to # 1, because no other song will be able to beat it atop the Hot 100. The 30’s intro will also bounce from # 1 on the sales chart and almost certainly improve on other lists, such as pop only radio charts frames, could become the most listened to song on the radio, and could very well end 2021 as one of the most successful songs of the year.