- Billboard Chart Beat - Fred Bronson mentions Clay in his latest "Chart Beat" column, answering a question about Leona Lewis, UK's X-Factor winner that took North America by storm last week with her CD "Spirit" -
Leona Lewis' achievement is quite remarkable, given the number of U.K. artists who have been successful on the Hot 100 over the last few years. As I mentioned in this week's Chart Beat, her success in the United States is based strictly on the merits of her song and her talent since we did not get to know her over a period of weeks while she competed on the U.K. TV series "The X Factor."
Her six-week climb to the top represents a rapid rise to No. 1, but she doesn't win the race for achieving pole position. In 1998, Lauryn Hill's "Doo Wop (That Thing)" entered the Hot 100 at No. 1. Hill had appeared on the chart as a member of the Fugees, but this was her debut single as a solo artist. Five years later, Clay Aiken debuted at No. 1 with "This Is the Night." That was his solo debut, although he had charted a few weeks earlier as one of the American Idol Finalists with a version of Lee Greenwood's "God Bless the U.S.A."
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