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RAYE Scores First U


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“These are happy tears!” the British singer proclaimed.

RAYE

RAYE Sebastian Kapfhammer

RAYE landed her very first No. 1 hit in the U.K. on Friday (Jan. 6) with her latest single “Escapism,” featuring 070 Shake.

“This is proof [you should] back yourself, no matter what,” the indie artist said through tears in a video posted to her socials of her accepting the award from the U.K.’s Official Charts Company. “Thank you, this is mad. These are happy tears!”

The pop-rap collab with 070 Shake is just one of several singles the British singer-songwriter has dropped in recent months ahead of her upcoming debut album My 21st Century Blues, alongside “Hard Out Here,” “Black Mascara” and “The Thrill Is Gone.” In tandem with its chart-topping success in her native U.K., “Escapism” also became RAYE’s first single to chart on the Billboard Hot 100, so far peaking at No. 72 (chart dated Dec. 31).

Earlier in December, the track turned into a bona fide global hit thanks to going viral on TikTok and soared into the top 40 on both the Billboard Global Excl. U.S. and Billboard Global 200 charts. The song benefited from a release strategy that included both sped-up and slowed-down versions, as well as a live recording.

RAYE’s initial success on the Billboard charts came in the Dance/Electronic genre. Since 2016, she’s notched 14 entries on the Hot Dance/Electronic Songs chart with two landing in the top 10: 2020’s “Secrets” with Regard and 2021’s “Bed” with Joel Corry and David Guetta. (Her collab with Regard also became a minor crossover hit on the Pop Airplay chart by peaking just inside the top 40 at No. 39.)

Watch Raye tearfully accept her U.K. No. 1 for “Escapism” below.

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