Grammys 2017: Beyonce’s ‘Formation’ NOT on Billboard year-end top singles chart – game over for Record of the Year?

With the recent release of Billboard’s year-end list of the top 100 singles of the year, we see the nominees for Record of the Year once again line up with some of the year’s biggest chart-toppers with one notable exception: Beyonce. While the pop/R&B diva ruled the Grammy nominations with nine total noms, her single for “Formation” failed to crack the year-end Hot 100. In fact only one of her “Lemonade” singles made the year-end list: “Sorry” at #71.

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The other four of this year’s five nominees are on the list, with “Work” by Rihanna featuring Drake taking the highest spot at #4. “Stressed Out” by Twenty One Pilots came in at #5, followed by “Hello” by Adele at #7 and “7 Years” by Lukas Graham at #12.

But there are plenty of factors that still play in Beyonce’s favor. Among them are her leading amount of nominations, being the current favorite for Album of the Year with “Lemonade” and being in second place in our predictions center with 9/2 odds of winning. “Formation” would also join nine past winners of Record of the Year (16%) that never charted on the year-end Hot 100 at all: “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” by Tony Bennett (1962), “A Taste of Honey” by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass (1965), “Graceland” by Paul Simon (1987), “Unforgettable” by Natalie Cole with Nat King Cole (1991), “Walk On” by U2 (2001), “Here We Go Again” by Ray Charles with Norah Jones (2004), “Not Ready to Make Nice” by the Dixie Chicks (2006), “Please Read the Letter” by Alison Krauss and Robert Plant (2008) and “Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)” by Sam Smith (2014).

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The current frontrunner for Record of the Year is “Hello” by Adele, which is the third highest ranked nominee on Billboard’s year-end chart. It has commanding 1/2 odds of winning according to our combined odds at Gold Derby. If it were to win, the song would join 10 previous winners (17%) who have triumphed in that position: “Mrs. Robinson” by Simon & Garfunkel in 1968 (#9), “Hotel California” by the Eagles in 1977 (#19), “Sailing” by Christopher Cross in 1980 (#32), “Rosanna” by Toto in 1982 (#14), “Beat It” by Michael Jackson in 1983 (#5), “We Are the World” by USA for Africa in 1985 (#20), “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby McFerrin in 1988 (#37), “Another Day in Paradise” by Phil Collins in 1990 (#7), “Kiss From a Rose” by Seal in 1995 (#4) and “My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion in 1998 (#13).

The highest charting song has won Record of the Year 17 times out of the 58 past ceremonies (29% of the time). Ten of those winners were #1 on the year-end chart: “Nel Blu Depinto Di Blu (Volare)” by Domenico Modugno (1958), “Theme from ‘A Summer Place’” by Percy Faith (1960), “Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Simon & Garfunkel (1970), “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” by Roberta Flack (1972), “Love Will Keep us Together” by Captain & Tennille (1975), “Bette Davis Eyes” by Kim Carnes (1981), “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston (1993), “Rolling in the Deep” by Adele (2011), “Somebody That I Used to Know” by Gotye featuring Kimbra (2012) and last year’s winner “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars.

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The seven other Grammy winners that were the highest charting among the nominees were “Mack the Knife” by Bobby Darin in 1959 (#2), “Moon River” by Henry Mancini in 1961 (#60 the following year), “Days of Wine and Roses” by Henry Mancini in 1963 (#48), “Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In” by the 5th Dimension in 1969 (#2), “What’s Love Got to Do With It” by Tina Turner in 1984 (#2), “Wind Beneath My Wings” by Bette Midler in 1989 (#7) and “Need You Now” by Lady Antebellum in 2010 (#2).

This stat could give a very needed boost to “Work” by Rihanna and Drake, who are the top-charting among this year’s nominees. But they are currently in fourth place in our predictions with 7/1 odds of prevailing.

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The second highest charting song, “Stressed Out,” would join seven other songs (12% of winners) that have prevailed here: “Strangers in the Night” by Frank Sinatra in 1966 (#15), “It’s Too Late” by Carole King in 1971 (#3), “Killing Me Softly With His Song” by Roberta Flack (#3), “Just the Way You Are” by Billy Joel in 1978 (#17), “What a Fool Believes” by the Doobie Brothers in 1979 (#19), “Tears in Heaven” by Eric Clapton in 1992 (#6) and “All I Wanna Do” by Sheryl Crow in 1994 (#34).

Could this give Twenty One Pilots a boost? “Stressed Out” is currently in third place in our predictions with 7/1 odds, so it certainly doesn’t hurt.

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This year’s lowest charting song, “7 Years” by Lukas Graham, would join a good-sized amount of other Record of the Year winners that have been the lowest charting of their fellow nominees. Nine champs (16%) have been in that position: “The Girl from Ipanema” by Astrud Gilberto and Stan Getz in 1964 (#51), “Up, Up and Away” by the 5th Dimension in 1967 (#47), “I Honestly Love You” by Olivia Newton-John in 1974 (#97), “This Masquerade” by George Benson in 1976 (#69), “Smooth” by Santana featuring Rob Thomas in 1999 (#19), “Beautiful Day” by U2 in 2000 (#75 the following year), “Don’t Know Why” by Norah Jones in 2002 (#97 the following year), “Clocks” by Coldplay in 2003 (#81) and “Rehab” by Amy Winehouse in 2007 (#74).

But Lukas Graham is currently in last place according to our predictions (7/1 odds), so it appears their position might not help them at all.

The six remaining winners of Record of the Year (10%) finished fourth in their nominee group without being the lowest charting song: “Higher Love” by Steve Winwood in 1986 (#20), “Change the World” by Eric Clapton in 1996 (#19), “Sunny Came Home” by Shawn Colvin in 1997 (#39), “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” by Green Day in 2005 (#7), “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon in 2009 (#14) and “Get Lucky” by Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers (#14).

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