HITS Daily Double
It was less than 12 months ago that I sold my soul to HITS—and not even at retail prices. Since then I’ve done over 40 columns, made countless road trips, and made a passel of new friends. This year brought a number of highs as well as lows: health scares, babies being born, and everything in between!  It was quite a year, to be sure—and quite a year for music as well. Surprising exactly no one, IDJ was the #1 chart-share label of the year. Rick Sackhiem, Noah Sheer, and Scott Maness were steady all year long, taking records like Rihanna’s “Pour It Up,” “Diamonds” and “Stay” to the top. They also had tremendous success with Jay Z, Kanye West, Big Sean, Frank Ocean and Ne-Yo. The combination of a great artist roster and promotional skills proved to be a winning combination… RCA also had a year to remember. John Strazza, Inca, and Lori G expertly wielded their superb mix of star power and new artists to lock up the #2 slot. A$AP Rocky’s “F**kin’ Problems,” Justin Timberlake’s “Suit and Tie” and “Mirrors,” Miguel, Chris Brown, Ke$ha and Pitbull all contributed. Miley Cyrus is looking to make 2014 her year, while Kid Ink and Becky G look to move them to #1 in 2014… Gary Spangler and Davey Dee at Republic certainly had their share of hits as well. Drake’s “Hold On” and “Started From The Bottom,” newcomer Ariana Grande with “The Way,” Lil Wayne and Lorde were the core of their success in 2013. Lorde will have a huge 2014, starting with her new single, “Team,” as will SoMo and Ariana Grande. These artists, along with their Cash Money roster, are a sure recipe for success… Although Columbia didn’t have the same volume of releases as the three labels mentioned above did, they managed to make the most of them. Spearheaded by J. Cole’s “Power Trip” and “Crooked Smile,” Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky,” and Juicy J’s “Bands A Make Her Dance,” Ayelet Schiffman and James White maximized their opportunities… And what a year Lee L’Heureux had with Macklemore and Ryan Lewis! He was responsible for the #2 and #3 biggest records of the year (“Can’t Hold Us” and “Thrift Shop”), as well as “Same Love.” Along with Jason Derulo and Drake’s new label venture, he’s looking at another great year for WB Epic’s Rachael Spangler and Dixie Tipton took an unknown artist in John Hart and made his track “Who Booty” the #13 record of the year. They also had tremendous success with Ciara’s “Body Party” as well Sean Kingston’s “Beat It.” The label welcomed new head of promotion Todd Glassman halfway through the year, and with artists like Future and Yo Gotti, they’re looking forward to a stellar 2014… A few miscellaneous tidbits: Drake was on 5 of the top 50 songs of 2013. Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” was the #1 song of the year. Macklemore, Kendrick Lamar, and Rihanna were the only artists with three singles in the top 50; Justin Timberlake had two, plus “Holy Grail.” Have a great holiday everyone!