It’s bad enough that every artist to notch a No. 1 song on Billboard’s Hot 100 this year has been a man. But consider that it’s been a year since a female-led song topped the charts, stretching back to Sia’s Cheap Thrills last August, 2017 looks even more depressing for women in music.
Thankfully, there’s hope for the rest of 2017. Rihanna’s Wild Thoughts collaboration with DJ Khaled is tantalizingly close to No. 1, and several big-name female artists also have their album releases locked in for the fall, with a number of other stars teasing forthcoming music. Can one of these names break the streak?
The world is still waiting to hear Rainbow, Kesha’s first album since 2012 (out Friday). The Hot 100 has loved the singer’s past singles, with TiK ToK, We R Who We R and Timber, her song with Pitbull, all reaching No. 1 over the years, landing five additional songs in the top 10. While her anthemic new ballad Prayer is quite a departure from her raucous past singles, many fans rallying around her comeback would love to see Kesha be the artist to earn 2017’s first female-led No. 1 song.
Similarly, the girl group has a lot to prove with their new self-titled album (out Aug. 25), their first release as a foursome following Camila Cabello’s departure last year. 5H came close to a No. 1 single last summer with Work From Home, their pop hit with Ty Dolla $ign that reached No. 4. Fifth Harmony‘s lead single Down didn’t gain quite as much traction, but that doesn’t mean future tracks can’t succeed on the charts.
What kind of sound can Miley fans expect from the singer when her sixth album Younger Now drops Sept. 29? The singer went beats-heavy for 2013’s Bangerz, hitting No. 1 with We Can’t Stop, before dropping off the charts with her Dead Petz in 2015. If Younger Now sounds anything like Malibu, her Top 10-charting pop track she shared from her new album, Cyrus might strum her way to a No. 1 song once more.
Gomez has hinted at a forthcoming album while staying mum on an actual release date, instead releasing well-received new songs like Bad Liar and Fetish, and collaborating with Kygo on It Ain’t Me, which peaked at No. 10.Gomez has come close to the No. 1 spot with past singles Same Old Love and Good For You, which both reached the Top 5 of the Hot 100, but has yet to claim the top spot.
Similarly, Lovato hasn’t confirmed a release date for her new album, but she’s promised fans a release in 2017, meaning new music may be just months away. Her new single Sorry Not Sorry peaked at No. 23, following past charts successes from songs like Cool for the Summer and Heart Attack. Like Gomez, Lovato has never hit No. 1, which could potentially change later this year.