7&7 club: Bieber joins 9 artists with at least 7 No. 1 albums and 7 No. 1 singles; more surprising is who isn’t on the list…

(March 30, 2021).  This week, Justin Bieber got his eighth No. 1 album as Justice debuted atop the latest Billboard 200 chart (dated April 3).  

But it’s the simultaneous debut of the latest single from Justice that puts him in an exclusive club whose membership only includes nine other artists.

Justin Bieber

The song “Peaches,” featuring Daniel Caesar and Giveon, debuted atop the Hot 100 singles list, giving Bieber his seventh No. 1 on that chart and making him the tenth artist to join the “7 and 7” club, that is, those who have achieved at least seven No. 1 singles and seven No. 1 albums on the two main Billboard charts.

The names of the nine other artists who’ve done it probably won’t surprise you.  The greatest charting band of all-time, the Beatles, have had a combined 39 No. 1 singles and albums, with their individual tally nearly split down the middle: 20 No. 1 singles, 19 No. 1 albums, more than any other artist in either category.

The Fab Four inaugurated the 7 and 7 club way back in January 1966 when they achieved their seventh No. 1 album, Rubber Soul, to go along with what had already been eleven No. 1 singles in just two years of charting in America (ironically, their seventh No. 1 Hot 100 hit was “Eight Days a Week” in 1965).

While the Beatles’ ownership of this club, along with the names of its other members, won’t surprise you, the list of iconic superstars who haven’t yet made this list (or who won’t make it, in some cases) will probably blow your socks off. 

Here’s a complete rundown of the iconic artists in the 7 and 7 club, followed by a list of those notable superstars who have yet to enter.  

First, the ten members are listed in chronological order of when they joined the 7 and 7 club with either their 7th No. 1 single or album (year of entry shown in parentheses after the artist’s name).

One. Beatles (1966)

The Beatles (circa 1964)

As noted above, the Beatles joined the 7 and 7 club within two years of their U.S. debut in January 1964.  They did it when the album Rubber Soul topped the LP chart in January 1966.  Interestingly, the band had just achieved their eleventh No. 1 single weeks earlier with a song (“We Can Work It Out”) that wasn’t included in Rubber Soul.  “We Can Work It Out” was only available as a 45rpm vinyl single at the time. 

Two. Elvis Presley (1968)

Elvis Presley (circa 1956)

Elvis’ 7th Hot 100 No. 1 was “Suspicious Minds” in 1968, but he had eleven No. 1s on Billboard’s official pop charts that predated the creation of the Hot 100 in August 1958.  With his seventh No. 1 album – the soundtrack to Blue Hawaii – occurring in 1961, one could reasonably argue that, if you include his pre-Hot 100 hits (which most historians do), then he was the first artist in the 7 and 7 club, five years ahead of the Beatles.  

Three. Rolling Stones (1978)

Rolling Stones

Some Girls became The Rolling Stones’ seventh of nine No. 1 albums in 1978.  They had achieved their seventh No. 1 single five years earlier when “Angie” topped the chart.  Ironically, Some Girls contained the iconic band’s eighth and last No. 1 single, “Miss You,” which topped the pop (and not the disco) charts in the summer of ‘78.  Their ninth and last No. 1 album was Tattoo You in 1981, featuring the iconic hit “Start Me Up,” which peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100 that fall. 

Four. Paul McCartney (1982)

Paul McCartney

When Sir Paul McCartney’s Tug of War reached No. 1 in 1982, it became the former Beatle’s 7th No. 1 album either solo or as a member of Wings.  In most music trades, McCartney’s hits with his band Wings are generally lumped together with his solo work for historical purposes.  On the singles chart, McCartney and/or Wings had already achieved eight No. 1s when “Ebony and Ivory” (with Stevie Wonder) topped the Hot 100 earlier in 1982.  His ninth and final singles chart topper was “Say, Say, Say” (with Michael Jackson) in 1983/84.

Five. Elton John (1986)

Elton John (1972)

As part of Dionne & Friends, Elton achieved his seventh No. 1 single with “That’s What Friends Are For” in January 1986 (he and the other friends Gladys Knight and Stevie Wonder received label credits by name on some pressings of the single).  By that point, Elton had achieved seven No. 1 albums when Rock of the Westies debuted atop the chart in late 1975. Even if you dispute his “Friends” credit, John would have later joined this club with his George Michael duet on the 1992 No. 1 remake of Elton’s 1974 No. 2 classic, “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me.”

Six. Madonna (2008)

Madonna (2017)

Madonna’s 7th No. 1 album came with 2008’s Hard Candy, roughly 19 years after her seventh No. 1 single (1989’s “Like A Prayer”), making hers the second-longest wait after achieving one of the milestones before achieving the other.  Madonna has since had two additional No. 1 albums and a total of twelve No. 1 singles, with her last No. 1 Hot 100 hit being “Music” in 2000. 

Seven. Janet Jackson (2015)

Janet Jackson (circa 2015)

Janet has had the longest gap between seven and seven.  Her seventh No. 1 single, 1993’s “Again,” occurred nearly 22 years before she finally achieved her seventh No. 1 album with her latest release, 2015’s Unbreakable.  Jackson, whose last No. 1 Hot 100 hit was 2001’s “All For You,” has a total of ten No. 1 singles to go with her seven No. 1 albums. 

Eight. Drake (2020)

Drake (2017)

When “Toosie Slide” ascended to No. 1 in April 2020, it marked Drake’s seventh No. 1 single, including two as a featured artist on Rihanna’s hits “What’s My Name” and “Work.”  By that point, he had already racked up nine No. 1s on the Billboard 200 albums chart, with a combination of studio albums, mixtapes and oddities compilations.  His next full-length studio set, the long-awaited Certified Lover Boy, is set to be released in early April and is sure to become his tenth No. 1 on the album chart, to go along with his now-eight No. 1 singles – a tally that will also likely increase with the new album’s release. 

Nine. Taylor Swift (2020)

Taylor Swift (2019)

Taylor became only the third female to join this list when her “Willow” – the first single from her eighth No. 1 album, Evermore – became her seventh No. 1 on the Hot 100 last December.  Swift had just achieved her seventh No. 1 album four months earlier when the Grammy-winning album of the year, Folklore, debuted atop the Billboard 200 chart.  Thus, Taylor is the artist with the shortest wait between the two milestones.  She is also the only artist to simultaneously debut atop both the albums and singles charts twice (first with Folklore and its lead single, “Cardigan,” and then with “Willow” and Evermore).

Ten. Justin Bieber (2021)

Justin Bieber (circa 2015)

Justin Bieber joined the 7 and 7 club this week with his seventh No. 1 single, “Peaches,” to go along with his eight No. 1 albums – the seventh of which occurred last February (Changes).  Interestingly, Bieber’s “Peaches” also tops the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, making him the sixth artist on this list to also have had a No. 1 R&B hit, after Elvis, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Janet Jackson and Drake.  

Now, here are the artists who – surprisingly in many cases – have not hit the dual milestones of seven No. 1 albums and seven No. 1 singles, listed in alphabetical order (along with their No. 1 tallies on both lists):

ArtistBillboard 200 No. 1 albums Hot 100 No. 1 singles
Bee Gees39
Beyoncé 67
Garth Brooks 90
Mariah Carey619
Kenny Chesney 90
Chicago52
Phil Collins27
Celine Dion54
Eminem105
Future70
Whitney Houston 411
Michael Jackson613
Jay-Z144
Led Zeppelin 70
Bruno Mars17
Dave Matthews Band70
Metallica 60
George Michael 110
Katy Perry310
Rihanna214
Diana Ross 16
Bruce Springsteen 110
Barbra Streisand 115
Supremes312
U282
Kanye West94
Stevie Wonder 310
Research courtesy djrobblog, based on data from the Billboard charts

From the above list, it appears the artist most likely to join the 7 and 7 club next is Beyoncé, who is one No. 1 album from getting her seventh No. 1 in both albums and singles.

Rapper Eminem is the next most likely after Queen Bey, although Shady is still two No. 1 singles from achieving his seventh chart topper on the Hot 100.  He still regularly reaches the top five on the singles chart with each new album cycle, and it could just be a matter of time before lightning strikes twice more for the Detroit rapper.

Mariah Carey and the late Michael Jackson – both of whom have long since passed the seven No. 1 singles mark – are also just one No. 1 album away from entering the 7 and 7 club, but neither act has scored a No. 1 album in more than a decade and that drought doesn’t appear to be ending anytime soon, although Carey, whose career is still active, could conceivably get over the hump someday.  

As they say, anything can happen, especially in the music business.

Just ask Justin Bieber, the newest member of this esteemed 7 and 7 club, whose “Peaches” is now also his second No. 1 single on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.

Who would’ve seen that coming 12 years ago?  

Congrats to Bieber on his latest chart achievements!

DJRob

p.s. There isn’t really a “7and 7 club” in music; that threshold was chosen because it happens to be the one Bieber just entered. If we were to elevate it a notch to 8 and 8, then Bieber, Janet Jackson and Taylor Swift would fall off the rankings. If we dipped it to 6+6, then Beyoncé, Mariah Carey and Michael Jackson would all be included.

DJRob is a freelance music blogger from somewhere on the East Coast who covers R&B, hip-hop, pop and rock genres – plus lots of music news and current stuff!  You can follow him on Twitter at @djrobblog.

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