The King of Pop has lost his chart-topping hits record to Kanye West

No-one wants to be defeated.
No-one wants to be defeated.
Image: Reuters
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It’s a sign of the changing times, some would say. This week, rapper Kanye West scored his 40th song on the Billboard Top 40, netting him a spot on the list of top ten most chart-topping male artists in the chart’s history—and knocking pop legend Michael Jackson out of it.

The King of Pop had 39 songs that’d made it to the Top 40 by the time he died. Jackson was actually tied for the spot with Frankie Valli.West’s “That Part” (a Schoolboy Q song that includes him as a featured artist) now gives him 40 songs in those gloried ranks, putting him ahead of both legendary musicians.

Billboard’s weekly tracking of Top 40 hits—which now takes into account the amount of radio play, online streaming, and physical and digital sales each song gets—began in 1958, and is considered the music industry standard in the US for singles.

For emerging artists, breaking into the Top 40 one time alone is a career milestone; for more established or mainstream artists, getting multiple singles into the ranking is a testament to one’s staying power in the entertainment scene.

With West’s new achievement, the list of male artists with the most top 40 hits skews just a bit further away from classic acts like Elton John and Stevie Wonder. Modern artists such as Lil Wayne and Drake have inched their way to the top of the chart—though Elvis Presley, with 80 songs that’ve made it into the ranks, remains at the moment undefeated.

One song that wasn’t part of the always humble West’s stable of Top 40 hits that he’ll probably be singing after finding out his new status? “I am a God.”