It’s hard to believe, but we’re already halfway through 2008 — so I’m continuing my quarterly Top 25 of this year’s most infectious singles. Eligible for this round are springtime singles, ranked according to personal preference but compiled based on chart success and digital sales. We start today with nos. 25 through 21.
25. Nelly and Fergie, “Party People” (Billboard Peak: #40)
Along with her Sex and the City-sampling “Labels or Love,” this song was supposed to fuel sales of Fergie’s reissue of The Duchess — and 15,000 fell for the trick. It was also supposed to generate some sort of interest in Nelly’s waning career, but the song turned out to be radio kryptonite. I wonder how badly Nelly wishes it was 2002.
24. New Kids on the Block, “Summertime” (#39)
If Nelly wishes it were 2002, New Kids wish it was 1990. Their attempt at a radio comeback bombed, and if nothing else it showed us how low record companies are willing to go to try and save the music industry. For the New Kids’ sake, I just hope that Vh1 is planning a new celebrity dating show.
23. 3 Doors Down, “It’s Not My Time” (#17)
One of the most successful red-state rock bands of our generation, 3 Doors Down continues an impressive radio resumé with “It’s Not My Time” — their sixth Top 40 hit in less than a decade. Good thing, too: now we know who can successfully rewrite their own back catalogue if Nickelback stops recording.
22. Kate Perry, “I Kissed A Girl” (#1)
On one hand, this song’s junky electrobeat and heavy reliance on auto-pitch is pissing off music purists everywhere. On the other, it’s inspiring countless lesbian makeout sessions from coast to coast. A gift and a curse, perhaps — but you’ve got to hand it to Perry for crafting a pop hit so sure to make middle America blush.
21. Usher, Beyoncé & Lil’ Wayne, “Love in this Club Pt. II” (#18)
Sequels rule the box office, but very rarely do they hit the pop charts — unless you’re Usher, of course. Reeling off of parts one and two of “Confessions” a few years back, he returns this year with two versions of “Love in this Club.” And while Part I definitely takes the cake, it’s Part II that turns a routine love song into one of Usher’s patented emotional workouts. Will someone just fuck this guy on the dance floor already?