BTS can add another accomplishment to its list.
“Dynamite,” the K-pop group’s first song performed fully in English, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, unseating Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s “WAP” after a two-week run.
Prior to “WAP,” DaBaby’s “Rockstar” led the chart for most of the summer.
“Dynamite” had 33.9 million U.S. streams and 300,000 units sold in its the week ending Aug. 27, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. It also drew 11.6 million radio airplay audience impressions within the week ending Aug. 30. BTS is the first all-South Korean group to top the chart
BTS — with members RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, V, Jimin, and Jungkook — released its latest hit Aug. 21. They’d dropped some English lyrics in songs before, but “Dynamite” was a first. In an interview, member RM explained the song’s intention
“The goal of ‘Dynamite’ is basically simple … to explore the planet with positive vibes and energy,” he said. “We’ve been through all the sadness and desperation but with this song and performance we just hope the planet gets more positive.”
The band sings within the chorus, “So watch me bring the hearth and set the night alight // Shining through the town with a touch funk and soul // So I’ ma light it up like dynamite.”
The song’s music video broke records, becoming the biggest premiere in YouTube history by attracting at least 3 million concurrent viewers, according to the official YouTube blog. The previous record-holder was Blackpink’s “How You Like That” video, which garnered 1.65 million concurrent viewers during its premiere.
The video also set a new all-time record for YouTube video views in the first 24 hours, garnering over 101.1 million on the first day, according to YouTube. As of late Friday, the video had more than 233 million views.
The most difficult part of making “Dynamite” was stepping out of the comforts of singing in Korean and getting the English pronunciations down, the group told USA TODAY via an interpreter.
“It was more not hard, but interesting. It was a stimulating quite challenge,” Jungkook said, while RM noted that it had been a “fun hard.”
Though BTS told Entertainment Weekly in 2019 that they didn’t decide to sing in English because they didn’t want to vary their “identity” or “genuineness,” nobody planned on a global pandemic either.
“This may be a situation that everyone else around the world is facing, so we just began to explore what can we do immediately, what can we do really good?” Suga said.
The septet, which launched in 2013 with the song “No More Dream” from the debut album “2 Cool 4 Skool,” was the first K-pop group to debut at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 200 in 2018. Their 2019 album “Map of the Soul: Persona” topped the Nielsen charts in physical sales for the year and they performed at the 2020 Grammys with Lil Nas X. In their seven years, they’ve put out more than a dozen albums and EPs.