Singing News #1 Hits Analysis: By Label

Last updated 2/16/2015, with the March 2015 chart.

Which record companies have had the most #1 hits, and spent the most months at #1?

Number of #1 Hits:

  1. 74: Crossroads (39 for Horizon, 29 for Sonlite, 1 for Vine, 1 for Parable, 2 non-imprint)
  2. 60: Daywind
  3. 28: Benson (16 for Heartwarming, 12 for RiverSong) (2 songs in 1970-71 shared)
  4. 25: Canaan (3 songs in 1970-71 shared)
  5. 18: EMI (9 Spring House, 9 Spring Hill)
  6. 14: United Independent Artists
  7. 11: MorningStar
  8. 7: Family Music Group
  9. 7: Homeland
  10. 5: Calvary
  11. 3: ACA
  12. 3: Cross and Crown
  13. 3: Mansion

Number of Months spent at #1:

  1. 102: Canaan (15 months in 1970-71 shared)
  2. 93: Benson (60 for Heartwarming, 33 for RiverSong) (17 months in 1970-71 shared)
  3. 92: Crossroads (48 for Horizon, 36 for Sonlite, 1 for Vine, 1 for Parable, 2 non-imprint)
  4. 75: Daywind
  5. 30: MorningStar
  6. 26: EMI (14 Spring Hill, 12 Spring House)
  7. 17: United Independent Artists
  8. 15: Skylite (all from its one #1 hit, the Blackwood Brothers’ “Learning to Lean”)
  9. 13: Homeland
  10. 12: Calvary
  11. 11: Family Music Group
  12. 6: ACA
  13. 4: Cross and Crown
  14. 3: Mansion

With one exception, I only included record companies that had three or more #1 hits. That one exception was Skylite; though it only had one #1 hit, that one hit was the longest-running in chart history!

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14 Letters to the Editor

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  1. I’m curious as to your opinion of why there has not been a ‘multi-month’ hit since July/August of 2007?

    According to the list, The Dove Brothers’ “I Can Pray” was the last hit that was #1 for more than 1month. According to the list, during the 70’s & 80’s there were MANY hits that were #1 for several months in a row.

    Could it be that with the invention of MP3 listening devices, that there has been a decrease in listening to the radio? I wouldn’t think it to be because of song quality, because the quality of songs (lyrics in particular) seem to be as good as ever.

    Just wondering,

    • It’s actually rather simple: Once a song has hit #1, radio promoters almost never push it for another month at #1, because DJs almost never respond to said encouragement by charting it that high for another month.

      • OK, thanks. I wonder why it changed? I mean, now compared to the 70’s -80’s? Does the radio industry just ignore requests after it goes #1, or just not report?

        As you can see, I’m clueless about how the machinery works! 🙂

      • Life is faster-paced these days, and I guess the charts just reflect that.

    • Shorter attention spans. More and more, we’re looking for the next, new thing, and quickly.

  2. Now, compare the labels to the artists. How many of those #1’s per label were from the same artist? For example, I’d venture to say that any Calvary Records #1 song was The Hinsons.

    • Not quite – I believe one of them was a Freemans song.

      • Yes, the Freemans hit #1 with “Going Back.” The Hinsons’ #1 hits include “God’s Gonna Do the Same,” “Two Winning Hands,” “Call Me Gone,” and “Mercy Built a Bridge.”

        What is the one non-imprint for Crossroads? I have the #1 history, but I can’t recall at the moment which one it is.

      • Oh – that one is the Akins’ I Want My Stage to be an Altar.

  3. Daniel, Nice work on this. I find this article very interesting. I was wondering your opinion about Independant artists. I see just by a bird’s eye glance that Indie secular artists are finding a lot of success in their fields. Is this something you think that Southern Gospel music can or will adopt as well? Some marketing capabilitties have attributed to many Indie artists having great success. There are far more Independant artists in Southern Gospel than major labeled artists. I also wonder if some of the recent number one hit songs could not have been given up on as quickly as you were disscussing. One might find it interesting how many number one songs Southern Gospel fans can’t even remember. Great songs are not just a number on a chart, they are songs that you can’t get out of your head/heart.

  4. Just out of curiosit, What southern gospel group still traveling today has had the most #1 hits?

    • That’s pretty easy to answer, actually, because the group with the all-time most #1s, the McKameys, is still on the road.

      • I always had assumed The Hoppers had the most #1 hits, but I never thought about the McKamey’s.
        Thanks Daniel

      • You’re welcome!