The Adult Pop Airplay (formerly known as Adult Pop Songs and Adult Top 40) chart is published weekly by Billboard magazine and ranks "the most popular adult top 40 as based on radio airplay detections measured by Nielsen Broadcast Data Systems."[1]

It is a format in which the genre is geared more towards an adult audience who are not into hard rock, hip hop, or adult contemporary fare. The main genres within this format are alternative rock and mainstream pop that is more adult-oriented. It is not to be confused with adult contemporary where rather lesser-known and more ballad-driven songs are played. The current number-one song on the chart is "Fortnight" by Taylor Swift featuring Post Malone.[2]

History

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The chart was first published in the March 16, 1996, issue of Billboard; however, historically, the chart's introduction was in October 1995, when it began as a test chart.[3]

The Adult Top 40 chart was formed following a split of the "Hot Adult Contemporary" chart due to the growing emergence of Adult Top 40 radio stations in the 1990s. These stations played a wider variety of artists and saw a faster turnover of songs compared to traditional adult contemporary radio. Songs by modern rock, dance, and R&B artists were mixed in with acts more closely associated with adult contemporary. According to Billboard, splitting the chart "better reflect[s] the music being played on adult contemporary and adult/top 40 stations."[3]

The first number-one song on the Adult Top 40, from the test chart of October 7, 1995, was "Kiss from a Rose" by Seal.[4] The first number-one song on the Adult Top 40, from the published chart of March 16, 1996, was "One Sweet Day" by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men.[5]

Chart criteria

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There are 40 positions on this chart. Songs are ranked based on its total number of spins per week. This is calculated by electronically monitoring Adult Top 40 radio stations across the U.S. 24 hours a day, seven days a week by Nielsen Broadcast Data Systems.

Songs receiving the greatest growth receive a "bullet", although there are tracks that also get bullets if the loss in detections doesn't exceed the percentage of downtime from a monitored station. "Airpower" awards are issued to songs that appear on the top 20 of both the airplay and audience chart for the first time, while the "greatest gainer" award is given to song with the largest increase in detections. A song with six or more spins in its first week is awarded an "airplay add". If two songs are tied in spins in the same week, the one with the biggest increase that week ranks higher.

Recurrent rules

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Issue Date Criteria Ref
March 16, 1996 – Jun 29, 2002 Records below the top 20 are removed from the chart after 26 weeks. [6]
July 6, 2002 – November 26, 2005 Records below the top 15 are removed from the chart after 26 weeks. [7]
December 3, 2005 – April 18, 2009 Songs are removed from the chart if they have been on the chart for
  • more than 20 weeks and rank below No. 15, or
  • more than 52 weeks and rank below No. 10
[8]
April 25, 2009 – Present Descending songs are removed from the chart if they have been on the chart for
  • more than 20 weeks and rank below No. 15, or
  • more than 26 weeks and rank below No. 10, or
  • more than 52 weeks and rank below No. 5
[9]

All-time achievements

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In 2016, for the 20th anniversary of the chart, Billboard compiled a ranking of the 50 best-performing songs and artists on the chart over the 20 years. "Smooth" by Santana featuring Rob Thomas was ranked as the #1 song, while Maroon 5 was ranked as the #1 artist.[10] Listed below are the top 10 songs and the top 10 artists.

Top 10 Greatest of All Time Adult Pop Songs (1996–2016)

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Rank Single Year released Artist(s) Peak and duration
1.
"Smooth"
1999
Santana featuring Rob Thomas #1 for 25 weeks
2.
"Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)"
2000
Train #1 for 14 weeks
3.
"Wherever You Will Go"
2001
The Calling #1 for 23 weeks
4.
"How to Save a Life"
2006
The Fray #1 for 15 weeks
5.
"Counting Stars"
2013
OneRepublic #1 for 7 weeks
6.
"Unwell"
2003
Matchbox Twenty #1 for 18 weeks
7.
"I'm Yours"
2008
Jason Mraz #1 for 9 weeks
8.
"You and Me"
2005
Lifehouse #1 for 9 weeks
9.
"All for You"
1997
Sister Hazel #1 for 7 weeks
10.
"Hanging by a Moment"
2000
Lifehouse #1 for 5 weeks

Source:[11]

Top 10 Greatest of All Time Adult Pop Songs Artists (1996–2016)

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Rank Artist
1.
Maroon 5
2.
Matchbox Twenty
3.
Train
4.
Nickelback
5.
Pink
6.
Kelly Clarkson
7.
Katy Perry
8.
Goo Goo Dolls
9.
Daughtry
10.
Taylor Swift

Source:[12]

Song records

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Most weeks at number one

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Number of
weeks
Artist(s) Song Year(s) Source
25 Santana featuring Rob Thomas "Smooth" 1999–2000 [13]
23 The Calling "Wherever You Will Go" 2001–02 [14]
Taylor Swift "Cruel Summer" 2023–24 [15]
20 The Weeknd "Blinding Lights" 2020 [16]
18 Matchbox Twenty "Unwell" 2003 [17]
Nickelback "Photograph" 2005–06 [18]
17 Goo Goo Dolls "Iris" 1998 [19]
Miley Cyrus "Flowers" 2023 [20]
16 Avril Lavigne "Complicated" 2002 [21]
15 No Doubt "Don't Speak" 1996–97 [22]
The Fray "How to Save a Life" 2006–07 [23]
Panic! at the Disco "High Hopes" 2018–19 [24]

Most weeks on the chart

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Number of
weeks
Artist(s) Song Year(s) Source
75 Train "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)" 2001–02 [25]
73 Lifehouse "Hanging by a Moment" 2001–02 [26]
72 Santana featuring Rob Thomas "Smooth" 1999–2000 [13]
71 The Calling "Wherever You Will Go" 2001–03 [27]
69 Sister Hazel "All for You" 1997–98 [28]
65 Goo Goo Dolls "Slide" 1998–1999 [19]
The Weeknd "Blinding Lights" 2020–21 [16]
63 Vertical Horizon "Everything You Want" 1999–2001 [29]
62 Edwin McCain "I'll Be" 1998–99 [30]
61 Duncan Sheik "Barely Breathing" 1996–97 [31]

Highest debut

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Debut
Position
Artist Song Debut Date Source
No. 9 Taylor Swift "Shake It Off" September 6, 2014 [32]
Taylor Swift featuring Post Malone "Fortnight" May 4, 2024 [33]
No. 12 Ed Sheeran "Eyes Closed" April 8, 2023 [34]
NSYNC "Better Place" October 14, 2023 [35]
No. 13 Alanis Morissette "Thank U" October 10, 1998 [36]
Ed Sheeran "Afterglow" January 2, 2021 [37]
No. 14 Taylor Swift featuring Brendon Urie "ME!" May 4, 2019 [38]
Adele "Easy on Me" October 23, 2021 [39]
Miley Cyrus "Flowers" January 28, 2023 [40]
No. 16 Eric Clapton "Change the World" June 22, 1996 [41]
Maroon 5 "Maps" July 5, 2014 [42]
Taylor Swift "Look What You Made Me Do" September 9, 2017 [43]
Pink "Never Gonna Not Dance Again" November 19, 2022 [44]

Artist records

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Artists with the most number-one songs

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Number of
singles
Artist Source
15
Maroon 5 [45]
13
Taylor Swift [15]
10
Pink [46]
8 Katy Perry [47]
Ed Sheeran [48]
6 Adele [49]
Shawn Mendes [50]
5 Nickelback [51]
Justin Bieber [52]

Artists with the most cumulative weeks at number one

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Number of
weeks
Artist Source
101 Maroon 5 [53]
68 Taylor Swift [15]
54 Matchbox Twenty [54]
51 Ed Sheeran [55]
47 Santana [56]
45 Adele [49]
40 Rob Thomas [57]
38 Pink [58]
35 Nickelback [59]
34 Katy Perry [60]
27 Train [61]
Kelly Clarkson [62]

Artists with the most top-ten songs

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Number of
singles
Artist Source
31 Taylor Swift [63]
27 Maroon 5 [64]
20 Pink [65]
17 Kelly Clarkson [66]
16 Katy Perry [67]
Ed Sheeran [68]
14 Goo Goo Dolls [69]
Train [70]
Justin Bieber [71]
13 Matchbox Twenty [72]

Longest break between number ones

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  • Coldplay – eight years and eight months[73]
  • Train – six years, four months and one week
  • Maroon 5 – five years, 10 months and one week

Additional achievements

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  • Shawn Mendes is the first artist to have four songs hit number one on the chart before age 20.[74]

See also

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References

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  1. ^ "Current Billboard Adult Pop Songs chart". Billboard. Retrieved February 9, 2013.
  2. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay". Billboard. June 22, 2024. Retrieved June 20, 2024.
  3. ^ a b "Updated Charts: Heatseekers, AC". Billboard. Vol. 108, no. 11. March 16, 1996. p. 109. Retrieved February 9, 2013.
  4. ^ "Adult Pop Songs chart". Billboard. October 7, 1995. Retrieved February 24, 2013.
  5. ^ "Adult Pop Songs chart". Billboard. March 16, 1996. Retrieved February 24, 2013.
  6. ^ "Adult Top 40". Billboard. Vol. 114, no. 26. Jun 29, 2002. p. 75. Retrieved August 26, 2023.
  7. ^ "Adult Top 40". Billboard. Vol. 114, no. 27. Jul 6, 2002. p. 69. Retrieved August 26, 2023.
  8. ^ "Charts Legend: Recurrent Rules". Billboard. Vol. 117, no. 49. December 3, 2005. p. 62. Retrieved August 26, 2023.
  9. ^ "Charts Legend: Recurrent Rules". Billboard. Vol. 121, no. 16. April 25, 2009. p. 47. Retrieved August 26, 2023.
  10. ^ "Maroon 5 Top Artist, Santana's 'Smooth' Top Song of Adult Pop Songs Chart's First 20 Years". Billboard.com. Retrieved August 28, 2023.
  11. ^ "Greatest of All Time Adult Pop Songs". Billboard.com. Retrieved August 28, 2023.
  12. ^ "Greatest of All Time Adult Pop Songs Artists". Billboard.com. Retrieved August 28, 2023.
  13. ^ a b "Santana Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  14. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of May 25th, 2002". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  15. ^ a b c "Taylor Swift Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved March 9, 2024.
  16. ^ a b "The Weeknd Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  17. ^ "Matchbox Twenty Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  18. ^ "Nickelback Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  19. ^ a b "Goo Goo Dolls Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  20. ^ "Miley Cyrus Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  21. ^ "Avril Lavigne Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  22. ^ "No Doubt Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  23. ^ "The Fray Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  24. ^ "Panic! at the Disco Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  25. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  26. ^ "Lifehouse Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  27. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of January 18, 2003". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  28. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of August 22, 1998". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  29. ^ "Vertical Horizon Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  30. ^ "Edwin McCain Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  31. ^ "Duncan Sheik Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  32. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of September 6, 2014". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  33. ^ Trust, Gary (April 26, 2024). "Taylor Swift & Post Malone's 'Fortnight' Makes Record-Tying Start on Adult Pop Airplay Chart". Billboard. Retrieved April 28, 2024.
  34. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of April 8, 2023". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  35. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of October 14, 2023". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  36. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of October 10, 1998". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  37. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of January 2, 2021". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  38. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of May 4, 2019". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  39. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of October 23, 2021". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  40. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of January 28, 2023". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  41. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of June 22, 1996". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  42. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of July 5, 2014". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  43. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of September 9, 2017". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  44. ^ "Adult Pop Airplay, Week of November 19, 2022". Billboard. Retrieved February 11, 2024.
  45. ^ "Maroon 5 Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2022.
  46. ^ "Pink Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2022.
  47. ^ "Katy Perry Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2022.
  48. ^ "Ed Sheeran Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  49. ^ a b "Adele Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  50. ^ "Shawn Mendes Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  51. ^ "Nickelback Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2022.
  52. ^ "Justin Bieber Chart History (Adult Pop Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved November 9, 2022.
  53. ^ "Maroon 5 Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  54. ^ "Matchbox Twenty Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  55. ^ "Ed Sheeran Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  56. ^ "Santana Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved August 8, 2018.
  57. ^ "Rob Thomas Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved August 8, 2018.
  58. ^ "Pink Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  59. ^ "Nickelback Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  60. ^ "Katy Perry Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  61. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  62. ^ "Kelly Clarkson Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  63. ^ "Taylor Swift Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved May 29, 2024.
  64. ^ "Maroon 5 Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  65. ^ "Pink Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  66. ^ "Kelly Clarkson Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  67. ^ "Katy Perry Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  68. ^ "Ed Sheeran Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 7, 2021.
  69. ^ "Goo Goo Dolls Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  70. ^ "Train Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  71. ^ "Justin Bieber Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 7, 2021.
  72. ^ "Matchbox Twenty Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
  73. ^ Trust, Gary (June 1, 2017). "Coldplay Ends Longest Break Between No. 1s on Adult Pop Songs Chart". billboard.com. Billboard Magazine. Retrieved December 20, 2017.
  74. ^ Trust, Gary (31 July 2018). "Shawn Mendes Is the First Artist to Land Four No. 1s on the Adult Pop Songs Chart Before Age 20". billboard.com. Billboard Music. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
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