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Frank Ocean Logs His First Billboard Latin Chart Hit

Written by on April 17, 2020

The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on Fashion - Arrivals

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 06: Frank Ocean attends The 2019 Met Gala Celebrating Camp: Notes on … [+] Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 06, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/WireImage)

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No stranger to the Billboard charts, Frank Ocean has had his fair share of hits on the Hot 100 as a lead or featured artist—14 to be exact. But this week, the R&B star reaches a new milestone with “Cayendo,” his first single ever to appear on Billboard’s Spanish-language music charts.

First premiered at last year’s PrEP+ event in New York and ultimately released in a 7” vinyl edition late last month, the bilingual track’s long-awaited arrival on digital platforms led to a strong showing on Hot Latin Songs, debuting at No. 8 this week. Naturally, “Cayendo” also performed well in its initial charting frame at Latin Digital Song Sales, where it takes No. 3 spot, and Latin Streaming Songs, where it arrives at No. 7.

Throughout 2020 so far, the Hot Latin Songs chart’s top ten has been very good for bilingual singles. The Black Eyed Peas’ “Ritmo” with J Balvin tops the chart this week for the twelfth time this year, while Karol G’s “Tusa” team-up with Nicki Minaj previously reached No. 1 and continues to thrive in its 22nd charting frame at No. 3. Yet unlike those hugely successful collaborative tracks, where English-language artists and Spanish-language ones came together in the hopes of appealing to the other’s respective fanbases, “Cayendo” differs in that Ocean handles both languages by himself. As such, its top ten showing reflects the strength of his own following—as well as the inherent flaws in Billboard Latin charts methodology.

Though there’s ostensibly an internal metholodogy in place, from an outsider’s perspective the reasoning behind what makes a multilingual song eligible for Hot Latin Songs inclusion often seems discretionary or even arbitrary. “Cayendo” boasts a Spanish-language chorus and English-language verse. That one made the cut, but Cardi B’s Latin trap banger “I Like It”—with two-thirds of the verses in Spanish—did not. Similarly, the aforementioned “Ritmo” qualifies for placement, yet J Balvin’s 2019 hit “I Can’t Get Enough” with Selena Gomez and co-produced by música urbana hitmaker Tainy did not. The latter still managed to chart on the Hot 100, as did “I Like It.”

As for the Hot Latin Songs chart this week, the only purely Spanish-language singles to reach the top ten come from either Bad Bunny or J Balvin. The former holds six of the slots, with “Yo Perreo Sola” holding for a second week at No. 2. Repeating last week’s positions, “Safaera” with Jowell & Randy and Ñengo Flow stays at No. 4, “La Dificil” maintains at No. 5 and “Si Veo A Tu Mamá” remains at No. 6. His older singles “Vete” and “Ignorantes” are at No. 7 and No. 10, respectively. A single off his recently released Colores album, Balvin’s “Morado” spends another week at No. 9.

Ones to watch in the weeks ahead include Anuel AA’s “Keii,” a former top ten hit that tumbled in a big way when Bad Bunny’s album effectively purged the chart. That one reaches No. 11 this week, while his Shakira collab “Me Gusta” holds No. 13 and his surprise quarantine pairing with Karol G “Follow” makes its chart debut at No. 17. Anuel logs yet another placement this week at No. 28, with his reflective post-incarceration song “3 De Abril.”

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