Number 1 in 2004: Girls Aloud vs Destiny’s Child!

It’s 10 years since Girls Aloud scored a second No. 1 leaving Destiny's Child stuck at No. 2.

The latter part of the year is the time when things get serious when it comes to the Official Singles Chart, and the last weekend in November is when you’re likely to find a lot of new releases aiming to grab a Number 1 before Christmas craziness takes over.

And ten years ago was no exception, with five new entries poised to crave up the Top 10.

Destiny’s Child had staged a comeback two weeks earlier with Lose My Breath, but were cruelly beaten to Number 1 first by Eminem’s Just Lose It, then again when U2’s Vertigo leapt in at the top. But with new releases coming from Girls Aloud, McFly, Lemar and – quite excitingly – No Doubt lead singer Gwen Stefani, could Beyoncé, Kelly and Michelle finally make a push to the top of the Official Singles Chart? Not if another girlband had their way, no.

Girls Aloud must have been thrilled to finally score another Number 1 after five Top 3 hits following their chart-topping debut Sound Of The Underground, 2002’s Official Christmas Number 1. I’ll Stand By You was originally a hit for the Pretenders in 1994, reaching Number 10 on the Official Singles Chart.

Girls Aloud’s version was released as 2004’s Children In Need single and zoomed straight in at the top, sending U2’s Vertigo flying down to Number 7. Outselling Destiny’s Child by almost 2 to 1, I’ll Stand By You meant that Lose My Breath had to spend another week at Number 2.

The following week was no different. Girls Aloud remained at the top and Bey’s ladies held firm in runner-up spot – making it a month of being the bridesmaid for the group. Eventually, Band Aid 20 came along and broke up the girlband party.

I’ll Stand By You spent a total of six weeks in the Top 10 – the seventh Girls Aloud song to land there – and has sold over 230,000 copies. Girls Aloud had 22 Top 40 hits, with all but one going Top 10. Two more Number 1s awaited them: Walk This Way with Sugababes – another charity single – in 2007 and The Promise in 2008.

As for Destiny’s Child, Girls Aloud’s victory denied them a third chart-topper to follow Independent Women Part I (2000) and Survivor (2001). Lose My Breath may not have made it to Number 1, but it’s still Destiny’s Child third biggest seller in the UK, with over 340,000 copies sold. Over their career, the band scored 12 Top 10 hits.

So while the two biggest girlgroups were battling it out for Number 1, what about the rest of those new entries? Here goes the Top 10…

3: Lemar – If There’s Any Justice

The talented Londoner came third on the first series of BBC’s Fame Academy in 2002, but he was the real winner in terms of chart hits. Among his haul of 11 Top 40 hits were seven Top 10s, including this, his fourth. The Motown sound-inspired track didn’t advance any further, but it spent seven weeks in the Top 10 and sold over 200,000 copies.

4: Gwen Stefani – What You Waiting For?

At this point in her career, Gwen had achieved 10 Top 40 singles, including a Number 1 with Don’t Speak, as lead singer of No Doubt, but wanted to see how it felt to be all by herself on that stage. Gwen had already had a taste of solo stardom thanks to a feature on rapper Eve’s 2001 hit Let Me Blow Ya Mind, but now she really was going it alone.

Seven more Top 40 hits would follow, with 2007’s The Sweet Escape being her highest chart peak of Number 2. What You Waiting For? peaked right here at Number 4, selling 245,000 copies.

5: McFly – Room On The Third Floor

The title track of their debut album was the band’s fourth single and consecutive Top 5 hit. They’d go on to have another 15 Top 10 hits, and their first 15 singles all went Top 10. McFly have now, of course, merged with Busted to become… McBusted. Their debut single Air Guitar is expected to be a big new entry in this week’s Official Singles Chart.

Get tickets to see McBusted on tour next year.

6: Eminem – Just Lose It

7: U2 – Vertigo

8: JoJo FT Bow Wow – Baby It’s You

9: Usher – Confessions Part II/My Boo

10: Christina Aguilera FT Missy Elliott – Car Wash

This time last year…

Lily Allen climbed to Number 1 with Keane cover Somewhere Only We Know, while Bastille went straight in at Number 2 with Of The Night. Lily also scored another Top 10 with surprise single Hard Out Here. See the full Top 40 this week in 2013 with new entries from Gary Barlow, JLS, Avicii, Justin Bieber and Boyzone.

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