Kana Uemura Rules Chart with Toilet no Kamisama

CHART SPOTLIGHT. Kana Uemura (植村 花菜, Uemura Kana) is only one of the hit singles to top the Japanese singles chart this year. No less than six singles have topped the tally in 2011. “Toilet no Kamisama” (トイレの神様, Toire no Kamisama, “Goddess in the Toilet”) is the lead track off the EP Watashi no Kakera-tachi. The track has so far yielded more than 250,000 downloads to cellphones, awarding Uemura two Japan Record Awards in 2010.


“Toilet no Kamisama” has topped both Japanese singles chart (the Billboard Japan Hot 100 and the Oricon Weekly). The song describes Uemura’s relationship with her grandmother and contained enough drama that TV channel TBS turned it into a 2-hour drama special.

Helena Paparizou’s Back with Baby It’s Over

CHART SPOTLIGHT. According to the eminent music blog Scandipop, Helena Paparizou recently performed her latest single “Baby It’s Over” on the Greek version of X Factor. WelcheMusic actually thinks the track is worthy Madonna herself, so hopefully this will become an instant floor filler across the nation. The track will headline an upcoming Greatest Hits compilation to be released via Sony Music.


Helena Paparizou won the coveted Eurovision Song Contest in 2005 with “My Number One,” competing for Greece. The song became an international success, even managing to reach the top ten on the Billboard dance chart in 2006. Born and raised in Sweden to Greek immigrant parents, Helena Paparizou first rose to fame as part of the duo Antique. They had their breakthrough in1999 when became a giant hit in Sweden and Greece.


The 2005 victory was a revenge as Antique competed for Greece back in 2001 with “(I Would) Die for You.” Despite failing to win – it came third – the track became a cross-over hit in Europe, peaking at No.9 on the pan-European singles chart.  It topped the charts in Greece and Turkey, peaking at No.3 in Sweden and even charted in the UK.

Grenade Secures Lead in Sweden

CHART SPOTLIGHT. “Grenade” takes a giant leap from 10-1 on this week’s Swedish singles tally. This finally puts Bruno Mars on top in Sweden as “Just the Way You Are” peaked at No.2 in October last year. His Doo-wops & Hooligans album is yet to appear on the album chart.


By topping the Swedish sales chart, this means that Mars adds his eighth territory, including the important UK and US singles charts. He is still retaining the top spot in our neighbor country Norway where he succeeded Duck Sauce’s “Barbra Streisand.”

Will Morning Glory Open for International Bedingfield Release

CHART REFLECTION. Haven just seen Morning Glory, one of definitive highlights is Natasha Bedingfield’s “Strip Me.” Lifted off the album with the same name, Bedingfield is yet to release it outside Canada and the U.S. The below video was remade due to its inclusion in the movie, including footage with Diane Keaton, Harrison Ford and Rachel McAdams.


“Strip Me” is co-written and produced by Ryan Tedder, OneRepublic’s front man. Tedder also wrote and produced Leona Lewis’s “Bleeding Love.” Released in September 2010, the song peaked at No.79 on iTunes while only managing to reach No.91 on the Billboard Hot 100. Its highest peak so far is the US Adult Pop Songs chart where it climbed to No.23.


Despite not being officially released as a single, “Weightless” is one of the most popular tracks off the album. The Swede Kleerup (famous for the Robyn collaboration “With Every Heartbeat”) wrote/produced “Break Thru.”

English pop singer Natasha Bedingfield got her breakthrough in 2004 with Unwritten, which included the debut hit “Single.” Bedingfield followed the set with N.B. which was later re-named Pocketful of Sunshine for the North American market. The latter included the two songs “Pocketful of Sunshine” and “Angel” which was only available in the States.

In Sweden, her biggest hit to date is “These Words” which peaked at No.5 in 2004. Her only album to date was Unwritten, which peaked at No.14.

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