The official 150th birthday of Canada — commemorating Confederation — is this Saturday, July 1, known as Canada Day, but it’s been a year-long celebration with the government putting in a half-billion dollars towards the branded ”Canada 150” festivities and businesses commemorating the sesquicentennial their way.
Nielsen Music Canada, in collaboration with Billboard, has compiled its celebratory lists of the biggest artists, albums, and songs since the data-tracking system came into Canada in 1996 (and cut off Dec. 31, 2016).
“We’re excited to celebrate the success of Canadian artists at home as we honour Canada’s 150th anniversary,” said Paul Shaver, Head of Nielsen Music Canada.
Nielsen Music Canada’s recap includes all-format and radio charts (started April 1995), album sales (1996 -) and digital song sales (2005 - ). The most recent chart for streaming (July 2014 -) extends to March 2017.
The top-selling Canadian artist (by album sales in Canada) during the 20-year “Nielsen Music Canada era,” is, not surprisingly, Celine Dion when tallying up all her physical and digital sales for the Top Overall Artist chart.
She’s followed by Shania Twain and Michael Bublé at Nos. 2 and 3, both of whom are massive outside Canada.
Next is The Tragically Hip (No. 4), one of the country’s biggest acts for decades that played its final tour in 2016.
The Top Overall Albums chart — combining physical and digital album sales — finds Twain holding two positions in the top 10, Nos. 1 and 3 for Come On Over and Up!, respectively. Dion’s Let’s Talk About Love is sandwiched between at No. 2, while the diva also holds down Nos. 9 and 10 with Falling Into You and These Are Special Times, respectively.
When we get into the digital era, the dominating names are often different, pointing to the buying habits of a younger generation.
Sitting at No. 1 on the Top Digital Songs chart (ranking the best-selling digital song downloads) is Canadian passport-carrying Robin Thicke with “Blurred Lines,” featuring T.I. and Pharrell, followed by Carly Rae Jepsen’s breakthrough hit, “Call Me Maybe,” and East Coast rapper Classified with “Inner Ninja."
The same familiar Canadians that have been dominating the U.S. charts lately also pepper the top 10 of the Top Streamed Songs chart: Bieber, The Weeknd, Drake and Shawn Mendes. Bieber’s “Sorry” is No. 1 and “What Do You Mean?” No. 2, but he also takes No. 5 with “Love Yourself.” Drake owns a pair of spots in the top 10 with “One Dance” and “Hotline Bling” at Nos. 4 and 7.
The Weeknd claims a trio of tracks in the top 10 (“Starboy” at No. 3, “The Hills” at No. 6 and “Can’t Feel My Face” at No. 8) while Mendes is at Nos. 9 and 10 with “Stitches” and “Treat You Better.”
When it comes to airplay, taking into account all format spins, the No. 1 on Top All Formats Songs belongs to Armin Van Buuren’s “This Is What It Feels Like,” featuring Canadian Trevor Guthrie on vocals. The ubiquitous “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen comes in at No. 2, and Martin Solveig and Canadian band Dragonette with “Hello” at No. 3. A pair of songs by rock band Finger Eleven is next at Nos. 4 and 5, “One Thing” and “Paralyzer” — please download the PDF file below to continue reading, and all the best to our readers on this special Canada Day weekend.
You can download the Nielsen Music & Billboard Canada 150 Charts below.