Music history buffs have a fond fascination with the Billboard charts. Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon stayed on the album’s chart for 15 consecutive years or 741 weeks. Michael Jackson’s Thriller lasted 37 weeks at No. 1 and recently celebrated the feat of becoming only the 16th album ever to spend 300 weeks on the chart. When it comes to solo rap artists, few can disregard the Billboard chart success of Drake. After all, he’s had at least one song charting on the Billboard Hot 100 for eight consecutive years. Until now.
According to the Billboard Hot 100 charts dating to the week of August 26th, Drake’s name cannot be found. Not as a guest feature or as a solo artist. It marks the first time in 430 weeks that Drake’s not part of the chart, an astounding feat considering that the only artists in the hip-hop/R&B realm that has charted anywhere near that level are Lil Wayne, Rihanna and Nicki Minaj. For context, both Rihanna and Minaj are on the August 26th chart as Rihanna is on the No. 2 song in the country “Wild Thoughts,” and Kendrick Lamar’s “Loyalty,” which sits at No. 32. By comparison, Wayne clocks in at No. 10 as a guest feature on DJ Khaled’s “I’m The One” and Minaj arrives at No. 22 with Yo Gotti’s “Rake It Up” and No. 87 with Future’s “You Da Baddest.”
430 weeks ago, Drake first entered the Billboard Hot 100 with “Best I Ever Had” as his debut single. That was May 23, 2009. Since then we’ve gone through two full presidential terms of Barack Obama, watched Cleveland win a sports title, the Cubs win a World Series and tout a Canadian as the world’s most popular musician. Strange times indeed.
For eight consecutive years, Drake has had at least one single where he was either the lead artist or guest and peaked last year with his first No. 1 single in “One Dance.” Considering how More Life didn’t exactly set the summer ablaze as it should have from “Portland” with Migos and Travis Scott to “Passionfruit,” maybe Drake is in that place where taking a break is a good thing.