Belfast Telegraph

Ronson single set to top charts

Mark Ronson's rush-released single Uptown Funk - which was brought out five weeks early to capitalise on it being covered on The X Factor - is almost certain of a number one this weekend.

New figures from the Official Charts Company show the song, which features vocalist Bruno Mars, will debut at the top of the charts, despite only being released as a download on Monday night.

The song was featured in the X Factor semi-final when contestant Fleur East performed the song, despite the original still being weeks away from an official release.

Yesterday, Fleur offered an apology after her performance of the song quickly topped the iTunes chart following its inclusion in the show and prompted the change of plan for Ronson's release schedule.

Some people have been suspicious that Ronson's song has been given a boost because his label is part of the same company, Sony Music, which has licensed Fleur's cover version.

X Factor boss Simon Cowell's Syco Music is part of Sony.

Lily Allen grumbled about "music industry corruption" and wrote on Twitter: "Well done to Sony for managing to get a not yet released song of their's sung on prime time weekend telly."

Such is the volume of sales for Ronson's track that it has overtaken Band Aid 30 in the midweek charts, despite only being available to download from Monday evening.

Band Aid 30's revamped version of Do They Know It's Christmas? has been given an extra push this week following its release on CD, after previously only being available online.

When streaming figures are added, Ronson is expected to pull even further ahead and is tipped to comfortably take the number one on Sunday.

Ronson's previous chart best is number two which he achieved with the singles Stop Me and Valerie - the latter a collaboration with his late friend Amy Winehouse.

His Uptown Funk is also being seen as a contender for the Christmas number one if it can continue to sell well into next week, which would make it a challenger to deprive the winner of Sunday's X Factor final of the festive top spot.

Other tracks in the running for Christmas number one include Peace Collective's All Together Now and there is a campaign to get Iron Maiden's Number Of The Beast into the prized spot.

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