Surprising: 5 Artists Who’ve Never Had A Hot 100 #1 Single

Published: Thursday 28th Apr 2016 by That Grape Juice

In an era that seems more concerned about “the single” rather than “the album,” it has become exceptionally competitive to conquer Billboard Hot 100. Indeed, the successes of the Taylor Swifts, Rihannas, and Justin Biebers are few and far between.

Still, there exists a crop of acts whose chart narratives read as “close but no cigar.”

After the jump, we list five top selling artists who still have been unable to snag that ever elusive top spot. Some may surprise you…

Nicki Minaj

The self proclaimed Queen of Rap has broken numerous records and received various awards, but has thus far been unable to grasp the coveted #1 spot. Despite matching her former coworker’s, Mariah Carey’s, Hot 100 entry count of #44, none of these entries led to a #1 single. Her closest accounts for the thrown came from her ‘Anaconda’ and ‘Bedrock’ records, both of which stifled at the #2 spot. With the fourth era of Pink nigh, maybe the MC’s fourth project will boast the feat she and her Barbz hope for.

Ariana Grande


Mariah Carey’s vocal offspring has made quite the name for herself since her 2013 debut of ‘The Way.’ The song serves as the star’s first top 10 hit on the Hot 100, and samples Big Pun’s ’97 hit, ‘Still Not A Player.’ Since then, the former Nickelodeon star has spawned countless entries on the Hot 100, none of which managed to make it to the top of the chart. Her highest charting single, ‘Problem (Feat. Iggy Azalea),’ peaked a #2 and was blocked from the top spot by the Aussie rapper’s own single, ‘Fancy.’ With her third album ‘Dangerous Woman’ due in a matter of weeks, we will have to wait and see if the project can foster the aforementioned hit.



Drake serves as Young Money’s second star to make our list. Drizzy has topped the Hot 100 as a featured artist with rumored love interest Rihanna on tracks ‘What’s My Name’ and recent chart topper ‘Work.’ Though able to make it to the top with the help of the Barbadian beauty, the Canadian has failed to achieve the same feat with his solo efforts. Although ‘Hotline Bling’ swept the Internet with memes, covers, and recreations, the track ultimately clocked out at #2. With ‘Views From The 6′ due tomorrow, it is possible Aubrey may see his records reach new heights.


While Jeremih may not be able to match the album sales as the previous entries, the singer/songwriter has been the go to artist for many features over the past couple of years. Though possessing several top 10 hits, the digital dominator (and serial collaborator) has failed to release a single that has charted above his breakout effort, ‘Birthday Sex.’ Coming it at #4 on the tally, Jeremih was but inches away but not close enough.

J. Cole


The soul of Fayetteville, North Carolina has worked his way up to being compared to the greatest of MCs. After three #1 albums, Cole has created a demand for his work that is rivalled by few artists even beyond his Hip Hop genre. While many may assume the star has had at least one #1 single, the ‘Forest Hill Drive’ native has yet to even crack the top 10. The Paula Abdul assisted single ‘Work Out,’ managed to peak at #13 and remains the star’s highest charting single. The 5x Grammy nominee is just in the beginning of his career and has much time to top the chart.


So what do we make of this? In a climate where streaming is now at the forefront, it is possible these artists can move up the chart more easily than before. A number one single is not synonymous with talent or quality or talent, which most of these artists possess.

As ever, though…

Your thoughts?

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    • What Now April 28, 2016


    • LIL’ KIM BIRTHED YO FAVES April 28, 2016

      Mariah shaded that swagger jacking rat DOWNT!

    • Meteorite April 28, 2016

      Wait, why am I getting a dislikes? If anybody took the time to watch the clip with Linda Perry they would know that it was in alliance with what Mariah said.
      Majority of these artist now do not make good albums, they are good at making catchy singles but thats it. Linda also had a point that if the album is good start to finish then it will better support the single. That and none of these artist have longevity.

  1. B2B April 28, 2016

    And Drake is the biggest rapper in the world right now. I guess #1 singles do not equate to relevance and vice versa.

    • RihYonce April 28, 2016

      It sure doesn’t

    • Misdamenor April 28, 2016

      But it helps!

    • Really April 28, 2016

      I completely agree. I remember when the song cheerleader was number 1…..

  2. Lana Del Fan April 28, 2016

    The only two that surprise me are drake and Ariana. J Cole deserves one, but I understand why he doesn’t have one (he’s not mainstream)

  3. MUSICHEAD April 28, 2016

    U wouldn’t expect Jeremih or J Cole to have a #1 single. This post is fluff.

  4. Keri Qween April 28, 2016

    Death@ plastic garbaj releasing a million try hard singles even exposing her fat stank plastic ass for Anaconda and still no #1 kiii

    • Ciah’s Turtle April 28, 2016

      and what is it that Keri’s done ?

  5. Baddie_Ci April 28, 2016

    Nicki and Ariana will never!!! Flopz

  6. RihYonce April 28, 2016

    Drake & J.Cole definitely deserve a #1 . So does Nicki. Those 3 are still great #1’s don’t mean ? Because they all can sell albums

  7. LmfaoHoe April 28, 2016

    The Curse of Mimi strikes, once they compare you to her its already over. You’ll have a nice run til the industry gets rid of you. Girl has a “okay” voice not a powerhouse, but her materials are just meh nothing special. There’s no Vision of Love, Greatest Love of All, All By myself, because you love me, Always be my baby, I wanna dance with somebody just geneic bs anyone can sang including Taylor Swift.

      • LmfaoHoe April 28, 2016

        I’m not doubting her but there’s PLENTY of other girls that’ll sing circles around her. Tori Kelly and JoJo are two examples.

  8. Nicko April 28, 2016

    #1s (singles or albums) are overrated af. Thriller didnt go #1 yet it’s more remembered than your faves’ #1 singles. Longevity + sales >>>>>> chart positions.

  9. LB April 28, 2016

    “Despite matching her former coworker’s, Mariah Carey’s, Hot 100 entry count of #44, none of these entries led to a #1 single. “

    CRYING REAL TEARS, over 40 Hot 100 entries and non of them hit #1, FLOP.

  10. IStan4Rihanna April 28, 2016

    If there is one song of which Nicki Minaj should have garnered a #1 single for, it should have been ‘Super Bass’. It peaked at #3 for 8 weeks behind ‘Party Rock Anthem’ and ‘Last Friday Night’. It was the biggest streaming hit (on YOUTUBE/VEVO and PANDORA) of 2011 but @BILLBOARD hadn’t updated their streaming-placement rules yet so that wasn’t able to take it to #1 like it would have done today. Nonetheless, it is still the largest selling, #3 peaking song of all time with 6 million copies sold in the U.S.


    ‘Super Bass’ will always be her signature song. 😉

    • Shonyonce Minaj April 28, 2016

      Let’s not make a mistake and forget “Starships” it peaked at Superbass & Ananaconda they clocked in at #2 and broke a Vevo record !

      • Misdamenor April 28, 2016

        If you aren’t #1 then you are a runner up.

    • Andres April 28, 2016

      But did it go #1?

  11. truthtea April 28, 2016

    TGJ- y’all have too many damn ads I have to click out of it! Pick a struggle and ask Jesus to fix it!!!

  12. LB April 28, 2016


    Silicon Barbie likes to big herself up and cannot even chart a song to save her life nor win a Grammy.

    Queen of rap and yet she cannot even top the charts


  13. Keri Qween April 28, 2016

    Self proclaimed queen of rap…kiiiii

  14. IStan4Rihanna April 28, 2016



    1) The Rihanna/Calvin Harris smash-hit is debuting tonight.


    2) Rihanna will be featured on Drake’s ‘VIEWS’.



  15. Jackson 5 Nostrils (Tyler) April 28, 2016

    #1s are well over due for J Cole and Drake. They are the hottest rappers in the game right now #ColeWorld

    • IStan4Rihanna April 28, 2016

      ‘Drake’ will and should get a solo #1 single on the Hot 100 soon and all accounts ts are pointing to that being with ‘One Dance’ currently.
      I know he adores Rihanna and all but I’d hate to be known as the artist whose only #1 songs were because of a featured segment on one of the major Pop girls of the era.


      I’d like for Kendrick Lamar to get a solo #1 too.

  16. LB April 28, 2016

    I will literally die if Iggy slays her again. Iggy got her running last time she released generic crap like Anaconda.

    The planned parenthood, after 83573185715719-58701938501 months of promo cannot even produce 1 #1 hit LMAO

    • Nicko April 28, 2016

      When has igloo ever slayed Nicki ? Her Minajesty has always outcharted n outsold the rackst b****. N Nicki PROVES that #1s mean nothing, so does Rihanna ( work went #1 yet ANti hasnt even outsold The Pinkprint) ?? poor delusional Nicki hater

      • Minajesty April 28, 2016

        Let that h** know

  17. Meteorite April 28, 2016

    “…Caution, it’s so explosive
    Them chickens is ash and I’m lotion…”

  18. SEAN April 28, 2016

    Miguel…I want him to have one so bad

    • Nicko April 28, 2016

      Nicki got u SO bothered ! ??? ure so hateful lmao pathetic its not that serious. Nicki has had more bb entries than Mooriah n is CURRENTLY charting on BB ?.

    • Nicko April 28, 2016

      STAN for the video that CREATED the VEVO record ?.

      • Andres April 28, 2016

        Let’s not act like it was for anything positive, sis. It was dragged for absolute filth.

  19. LB April 28, 2016

    Now, moving on to more important hip hop artists, insiders think Drake’s views might debut with 2 million in the first week, slay.

  20. Minajesty April 28, 2016

    Work was number one for 9 weeks yet the album is bearly selling 15K each week nor are the tour tickets selling like hot cakes in the country where it was a #1

  21. LB April 28, 2016

    But Anti is about to outsell The Planned Parenthood which had a full year of promo and only sold in 2 years, what Anti sold in 3 months. Sit.

    • Nicko April 28, 2016

      Huh ? TPP went gold in the US 2 months after it dropped. FLOPti ?

      • LB April 28, 2016

        And it quickly fell off, poor Onika.

      • Nicko April 28, 2016

        Answer my question, is ANTiSuccess gold ? Why are rih’s singles flopping left n right ? Where are Needed trash n flop it better on the charts ?

      • LB April 28, 2016

        Anti is platinum, why can’t The planned parenthood reach 1 million copies sold WW after a full year of promo?

      • Samsung brought my albums April 29, 2016

        She just mad cuz Samsung brought flopti

  22. Minajesty April 28, 2016

    Clinging to Drake because your fave can’t even outsell Ariana fûcking Grande?

  23. Annalise April 28, 2016

    I’m confused. If Drake is on the list because he hasn’t had a solo #1 then Kendrick Lamar should be too. I really don’t care for Drake getting one, but Kendrick deserves it

    BTW Freedom is officially one of my FAVOURITE Beyonce’s songs ever!

  24. LB April 28, 2016

    But neither can your fav, that’s why you’re clinging to Koolaid.

  25. Annalise April 28, 2016

    AnTways, Mariah will always be one of the queens of shade. I am still living for the way Mariah and Whitney were dragging each other for the last note


  26. kwinzy April 28, 2016

    Kii! at Gimmicky Minaj releasing over 70 singles/features in the span of 7 years and still no #1. Most REAL artists take time to work on their craft and release CLASSIC music in like 2, 3 decades yet Nicki stays putting out lackluster trash just to sell to 13 year old minion in training bras. If ya built like an industry h**, then ya built like an industry h**. No artistic value whatsoever.

    • Nicko April 28, 2016

      Ur comment made no sense, hush. Most of Nicki’s fans are grown btw.

      • kwinzy April 28, 2016

        Ummm no. Any grown ass person (25 and up) who grew up with the likes of REAL FEMALE RAPPERS like Eve, Missy, Kim, Lauryn, etc and calls themselves a “barb” is a travesty. We all know Nicki caters to middle America who thinks Super Bass and Star Ships are quintessential female rap songs so the training bra description is fitting. Cute reply, tho.

      • kwinzy April 28, 2016

        You know Nicki’s fans are young AF since they stream the hell out of TPP to help homegirl get them fraudulent RIAA certifications. Real fans have jobs and support their fave artists by BUYING their s***. Lol

  27. Bitchpleaseeee April 28, 2016

    I can’t believe doesn’t though. Ah well…….???

  28. Stephon Jackson April 28, 2016

    This list is trash.

    James Brown, Bruce Springsteen, Missy Elliot, Babyface, Chaka Khan, EnVogue & Bob Dylan are the names that shocked me! Especially, James Brown! Goes to show you #1’s don’t mean s*** tbh… It’s all about the impact & quality of your music. #1’s are nice to have on paper but it shouldn’t be what an artist strive for. Excellent timeless music that stands the test of time, is what every artist should ultimately want.
    “Mariah Carey’s vocal offspring…”


  29. King Mark111 /.\ April 28, 2016

    Who’s surprised? Because I’m not.
    How is someone the Queen of rap when so many female rappers had at least ONE #1. Lil Kim with Lady Marmalade, Remy Ma with Lean Back, Left Eye with TLC classics, Iggy, Laurn Hill, hell even Shawna has a #1 hit!!!! Some Queen.

  30. james April 28, 2016

    What about kelly rowland and cici hihihi

    • Yeee April 28, 2016

      I think Goodies was number 1 and also Kelly and DC had number one hits

  31. RealNegro April 28, 2016

    Drake has two with Rihanna. They count!

  32. Yeee April 28, 2016

    I heard Nicki is working on a new album called the Pinkslip

  33. Jay April 28, 2016

    Missy Elliot is the Queen of Rap. 5 Grammys. Written over 500 songs for legends. Every album pure album sales exceeding platinum and multi platinum status. Janet, Beyonce, Madonna, and more.

    • kwinzy April 28, 2016

      Exactly! Come thru with the receipts. Missy is very passionate about being a true artist, collaborating with others within and outside the hip-hop community, she advocates female rap unity and is just an overall HUMBLE human being. She puts her art before her money unlike that Onika MiFraud

  34. No favs, just here for the music April 28, 2016

    This just shows you don’t need a #1 single to be great or relevant. #1 singles are great but they’re not everything. Not anymore.

  35. Justafan April 28, 2016

    It’s because Nicki ‘I steal from Lil Kim’ is a POP RAPPER. S*** she spits ain’t real

  36. Beystan_ Since 1997 April 28, 2016

    These comments lol! Why you guys dragging Nicki like this?

  37. zeroing ivy bloper tran anti girl lemond time April 28, 2016


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