Rihanna is the top artist of Billboard’s Pop Songs chart’s first 20 years

The week of Oct. 3, 1992, Billboard premiered the Pop Songs radio airplay chart, as then-new Nielsen BDS-based monitoring technology allowed for unprecedented accuracy in gauging the biggest hits on mainstream top 40 radio.

Twenty years later, we’re celebrating the anniversary by counting down the top 40 artists on the Pop Songs chart over the past two decades. We’re also mixing in memories from those working in the format, on both the radio and records sides.

1. Rihanna

Having first arrived on Pop Songs only as recently as 2005, her accomplishments are exceptional. She has the most chart appearances (34), the most top 10s (21) and the most No. 1s (nine, a mark she shares with the No. 6 artist, Katy Perry). She’s reigned with “Umbrella” and shined with “Diamonds,” the latter of which debuts this week.

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