After another impressive week on the charts, the question had to be asked: is Drake as big as Michael Jackson?
When Drake announced that Michael Jackson was set to be featured on 2018's Scorpion, fans were dumbfounded. The track, "Don't Matter To Me," which featured the "Hold on We're Going Home" singer and a recording of the King of Pop trading vocals over a smooth instrumental maybe suited better for The Weeknd, was met with mixed reaction from fans and critics. Some loved the idea of integrating a late legend into contemporary music, some thought Drake should have left it alone.
But adding in lyrics like "Michael Jackson sh*t but the palace is not for kids,"from The Six God's 2020 release "When To Say When" or "Not sure if you know but I'm really Michael Jackson, the man I see in the mirror is actually going platinum," from Certified Lover Boy's "You Only Live Twice," it is clear that Drake has considered the parallels between his time spent atop the music game and Jackson's ever-lasting and overwhelming music stardom.
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It is also clear that the Toronto rapper is not the only one to consider those parallels.
This weekend, after it was announced that Certified Lover Boy, Drake's sixth studio album and most recent release, would spend a second week atop the Billboard Top 200, becoming the first rap album to achieve that in 2021, Billboard raised the question themselves -- is Drake as big as Michael Jackson?
Putting nine songs in the top ten of Billboard's Hot 100 chart just last week, Drake broke Jackson's record of seven songs in the top ten, a record which had stood since the release of 1982's Thriller. Drake also tops Jackson in a handful of other categories, too. Drake has the most #1 albums, boasting ten to Jackson's six. Drake has had 54 Top 10 singles while Jackson only recorded 30. And Drake also holds the records for most consecutive weeks on the Hot 100 with an astounding 431 weeks and the record for most Hot 100 entries ever, with 258.
MJ still has the most consecutive #1 singles, boasting 5 to Drake's 2, and Thriller is the best selling album of all-time, moving over 100 million copies worldwide.
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Other factors must be considered, as well. Drake, a pioneer of the internet rap game, has benefitted from and ultimately mastered the streaming game. Jackson's numbers came in a time when the only way to get that music was to go out and buy a physical copy of a record, making a number like Thriller's 100 million copies sold *that* much more impressive.
Naturally, when Billboard took to Twitter to pose the question, is Drake as big as Michael Jackson, debated was ignited immediately. (Billboard also asked if Drake really does have "more slaps than the Beatles?")
Which side of this debate do you fall on? Is Drake at MJ's level? Or will there never be another King of Pop? Let us know in the comments.