The Beatles and Mr. Big boast the only hits to have led Hot 100 charts dated Feb. 29, in 1964 & 1992, respectively.
One-thousand fifty-two songs have leapt to No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100‘s history.
But, only two have leapt to No. 1 on Hot 100 charts dated Feb. 29, aka, leap day. And, of those two, only one has made the leap to the top for the first time on a leap day.
On Feb. 29, 1964, the Beatles ruled the Hot 100 with their iconic U.S. breakthrough hit, “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” The song leapt above all others that week for a fifth of seven weeks at No. 1.
On Feb. 29, 1992, Mr. Big rose 2-1 with rock ballad “To Be With You.” The song stands as the only Hot 100 No. 1 to begin its run at the summit on a chart dated Feb. 29.
And … that’s it so far for charts dated Feb. 29 in the Hot 100’s history, which began Aug. 4 1958. In that span, 15 leap days have occurred (every four years, between 1960 and this year), but only in 1964 and 1992 have they fallen on Saturdays, the day that charts are dated.
The way the calendar works, we’re only four years away from the next leap year in which Feb. 29 will be a Saturday. (This year’s charts closest to the 29th were dated Feb. 27.) Assuming Billboard charts remain dated on Saturdays, a third Feb. 29 No. 1 will join the Beatles’ and Mr. Big’s hits in Hot 100 history in 2020.
What will top the Hot 100 dated Feb. 29, 2020? A song by Justin Bieber, Rihanna or Taylor Swift? Or, a hit by an act not yet known?
For now, it’s too soon to tell, so let’s not leap to any conclusions.