After hitting the top spot for the first time on December 13, 2008, this stomper by the indomitable Sasha Fierce...I mean, Ms. Knowles, topped the chart again on December 27 for a three-week run. It would be remiss of me to exclude the famous video that cemented this single in history.
2. "Just Dance" Lady Gaga feat. Colby O'Donis (The Fame, Streamline/Kon Live/Interscope/Cherrytree, 2008)
After an astounding five months on the Hot 100, Lady Gaga's debut single hit number one on January 10 and the performance artist-turned-pop star began her yearlong domination of charts and hearts. For an inexplicable reason, the mix receiving most Top 40 airplay rotation did not, in fact, feature labelmate O'Donis but rather a bland rap by Kardinal Offishall.
3. "My Life Would Suck Without You" Kelly Clarkson (All I Ever Wanted, RCA Records, 2009)
Clarkson recorded the biggest leap in Hot 100 history on February 7 when her single surged from 97th to 1st place on the chart in one week, knocking out the previous record set by Britney Spears' "Womanizer" in 2008 (96 to 1). The club thumper, a veritable rewrite of the American Idol winner's other smash single "Since U Been Gone," spent two weeks at the top.
4. "Crack a Bottle" Eminem, Dr. Dre and 50 Cent (Relapse, Aftermath/Interscope/Shady, 2009)
On February 21, the single ultimately from Eminem's comeback album, broke first-week digital sales with 418,000 downloads, knocking T.I. out of the record-setting spot (hooray!). Of course, this glory was short-lived as the next week another, larger rap song came along and cemented its way into our ears for a while.
5. "Right Round" Flo Rida (R.O.O.T.S., Poe Boy/Atlantic Records, 2009)
Best known previously for his inescapable club anthem "Low," which topped charts for ten weeks in 2008, Flo Rida came back on the scene with "Right Round," which sampled the Dead or Alive '80s hit "You Spin Me Round" (so uproariously referenced by a jilted Mira Sorvino in an episode of Will and Grace) and featured a then-unknown (and unbilled) Ke$ha on the chorus. It broke the first-week sales record previously held by "Crack a Bottle," and stuck around the top spot from February 28 to April 4.
6. "Poker Face" Lady Gaga (The Fame, Streamline/Kon Live/Interscope/Cherrytree, 2008)
Who knew a song about bisexuality would be Lady Gaga's second number one single, making her the first artist to have her first two singles hit number one since Christina Aguilera in 1999-2000? Although it didn't stick around the top of the chart for more than a week (for reasons soon to be clear), it has yet to leave the heads of those who stumbled upon it.
7. "Boom Boom Pow" The Black Eyed Peas (The E.N.D. (The Energy Never Dies), Interscope, 2009)
The lead single from the newest album by the Peas began its dominating chart performance on April 18, but it's easy to forget that its success was never a sure thing. The production is atypical and not at all similar to anything that had preceded it atop the chart previously that year, but its bragging lyrics made a lot of sense as it continued to hold the top spot through the July 4 list.
8. "I Gotta Feeling" The Black Eyed Peas (The E.N.D. (The Energy Never Dies), Interscope, 2009)
While "Boom Boom Pow" was certified the top digital single and Billboard Hot 100 Single of the Year in 2009, "I Gotta Feeling" holds the record for time spent at the apex of the chart, rounding out the summer reign of the Peas with a fourteen-week run. Now, say what you will about this song, but if you want to see something that starts off pretty cool and then soon becomes freakin' incredible, check out the video below, done by 172 students in Canada.
All or Nothing, Cash Money/Universal Republic, 2009)
Although on his third UK album, British hip hop artist Jay Sean burst onto the American scene with All or Nothing and its lead single "Down" in May 2009 and finally knocked the Black Eyed Peas out of the top spot on the Hot 100 with his up-tempo, feel-good track which was re-edited to feature Lil' Wayne.
10. "3" Britney Spears (The Singles Collection, Jive Records, 2009)
Recorded and mixed while Spears was touring Sweden in late 2009, this single about threesomes was the first single in three years to debut at number one (and the only one this decade to do so that was not the debut single of the winner of American Idol), hitting the mark on October 24, and marked Spears' third number one single (notice a pattern?). It's also the shortest title of any song to hit the top of the charts.
11. "Fireflies" Owl City (Ocean Eyes, Universal Republic, 2009)
Possibly the cutest song ever to hit the top spot, "Fireflies" replaced the second week-long run by "Down" when it reached number one on November 7. Singer Adam Young reportedly recorded the song in his parents' basement in Minnesota in 2007 or 2008.
12. "Whatcha Say?" Jason DeRulo (Beluga Heights/Warner Bros, 2009)
This debut single causes some rancor among fans of Imogen Heap as it uses a sample of her song "Hide and Seek" for its chorus without an artist credit (unlike, say, Janet Jackson, whose "Son of a Gun" was listed as featuring Carly Simon since it used two lines from her famous song "You're So Vain"). It hit number one on November 14th but was replaced the next week by its predecessor, "Fireflies."
13. "Empire State of Mind" Jay-Z and Alicia Keys (The Blueprint 3, Roc Nation/Atlantic, 2009)
To ring out the new year, rapper extraordinaire (and Mr. Beyoncé Knowles) smashed the chart with this wildly successful single, with its rousing chorus performed by Keys, sounding better than she has since "If I Ain't Got You." Hard to believe, but it was the first number one for Jay-Z as a lead artist, after reaching the top spot three times as a featured artist ("Heartbreaker" with Mariah Carey, "Crazy in Love" with Beyonce, and "Umbrella" with Rihanna).