Official Charts Flashback 1999: Ricky Martin – Livin’ La Vida Loca

It’s 15 years since the swivel-hipped Ricky Martin turned up the heat with this Latin-pop summer smash that went on to sell over 900,000 copies in the UK!

“She’s into superstitions, black cats and voodoo dolls” isn’t the opening line you might expect from a Number 1 single, but Ricky Martin’s breathless tale of obsession and desire, not to mention a very reckless young lady, became 1999’s surprise summer hit.

The UK wasn’t exactly a stranger to Ricky Martin – his first hit was Un Dos Tres Maria, a kind of novelty tune that had soundtracked many a holiday in 1997. The following year, he scored a hit with his theme tune for the 1998 World Cup in France, La Copa De La Vida, but it was the last year of the 20th century that would see the plucky Puerto Rican singer go stratospheric.

1999 seemed to be the summer that Latin pop took over. Jennifer Lopez was making the transition from movie star to popstar with debut single If You Had My Love, Enrique Iglesias was also breaking out thanks to his first big hit Bailamos and, of course, our very own Geri Halliwell scored her first chart-topper with her own tribute to the craze, Mi Chico Latino. Oh yes.

The big winner of them all was Ricky, who stormed all the way to Number 1 and refused to budge for three weeks, sending temperatures soaring with every shake of that moneymaker.

And every shake sure was worth it. Livin’ La Vida Loca sold over 250,000 copies in its first two weeks on sale, going on to sell a total of 900,000 copies in the UK. It finished up as sixth best-selling single of 1999.

Altogether Ricky scored nine Top 40 hits, including five Top 10s. He hasn’t nabbed himself another Number 1 so far – his last hit in the UK was 2005’s Don’t Care.

Watch the video for Ricky’s first hit before we count down the rest of the retro Top 5 from this week all the way back in 1999.

2: ATB – 9PM (Till I Come)

Ricky’s gain was ATB’s loss, as another summer smash took a fall after a fortnight at the top of the Official Singles Chart. A huge hit in Europe, 9PM (Till I Come) was pretty determined to be a hit in the UK: it charted three times before hitting Number 1 – first at 68, then at 47 and again at 63, the last two times on imports, thanks to huge demand for the dance track from clubbers returning from their Ibiza holidays and heavy rotation on radio.

ATB managed to score five Top 40 hits, of which three were Top 10s, including a cover of Adamski and Seal's Killer in 2000. 9PM (Till I Come) has sold over 890,000 copies in the UK. Over 17,000 of you bought it in 2013!

3: Will Smith – Wild Wild West

It sounds hard to believe for any young fans of Will Smith the movie star now, but, yes, he used to be a popstar too! Quite a good one, in fact!

Landing his first hit in 1986 (!) as DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, Will notched up his first Number 1 in 1993 with Boom! Shake The Room. His first solo hit, Men In Black, spent four weeks at Number 1 in 1997.

Altogether Will’s had seven Top 40 hits with DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince and 12 solo Top 40 hits, including 9 Top 10 hits, this track being his 7th. His most recent hit was Party Starter, which reached Number 19 in 2005. He’s managed four Top 40 hit albums.

Wild Wild West, taken from the movie of the same name, peaked at Number 2 and has sold over 480,000 copies. Men In Black is the big one – over 940,000 copies sold.

4: Whitney Houston – My Love Is Your Love

A non-mover this week in 1999, the beautiful My Love Is Your Love peaked at Number 2 and was Whitney’s highest charting hit since 1993’s million-selling I Will Always Love You. The late, great Whitney Houston enjoyed 17 Top 10 hits in her lifetime. My Love Is Your Love has sold over 570,000 copies in the UK.

5: Vengaboys – Boom Boom Boom Boom!!!

Slipping two places was this former Number 1 for the Dutch dance act. Their first hit was 1998’s Up And Down, before they well and truly showed their kitsch credentials with We Like To Party (The Vengabus). Boom Boom Boom Boom!!! was their first Number 1 – We’re Going To Ibiza would give them a second three months later. Altogether Vengaboys racked up nine Top 40 hits, including seven Top 10s and those Number 1s. Boom Boom Boom Boom!!! sold over 620,000 copies – and over 6,000 of those have been sold this year!

See the full Top 40 from this week in 1999.

This time last year…

John Newman enjoyed his first solo chart-topper with Love Me Again, following his Number 1 with Rudimental, Feel The Love, from 2012. Robin Thicke spent another week at Number 2 with Blurred Lines, while last week’s Number 1, I Love It, from Icona Pop FT Charli XCX, slipped to third place. Check out the full Top 40 from this week in 1999, including new entries from Britain’s Got Talent star Gabz and Saturdays.

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