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Billboard number-one singles of the 1940s

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US number-one songs chart held during the 1940s.

Billboard number-one singles chart (which preceded the Billboard Hot 100 chart), which was updated weekly by the Billboard magazine, was the main singles chart of the American music industry since 1940 and until the Billboard Hot 100 chart was established in 1958.

Before the Billboard Hot 100 chart was established in August 1958, which was based on a formula combining sales data of commercially available singles and airplay on American radio stations, the Billboard used to publish several song popularity charts weekly. Throughout most of the 1940s the magazine published the following three charts:

  • Best Selling Singles – ranked the biggest selling singles in retail stores, as reported by merchants surveyed throughout the country.
  • Most Played Juke Box Records (debuted January 1944) – ranked the most played songs in jukeboxes across the United States.
  • Most Played by Jockeys (debuted February 1945) – ranked the most played songs on United States radio stations, as reported by radio disc jockeys and radio stations.

The list below includes the best-selling singles chart only.

  • Bing Crosby had the highest number of hits at the top of the Billboard number-one singles chart during the 1940s (9 songs). In addition, Crosby remained the longest at the top of the Billboard number-one singles chart during the 1940s (55 weeks).
  • Jimmy Dorsey remained at the top of the Billboard number-one singles chart for 32 weeks.
  • Glenn Miller remained at the top of the Billboard number-one singles chart for 31 weeks.
Reached
number one
Artist(s)SingleRecord labelWeeks at
number one
Ref
1940
July 27, 1940Tommy Dorsey“I’ll Never Smile Again”
RCA Victor
12
[1]
October 19, 1940Bing Crosby“Only Forever”
Decca
9
[1]
December 21, 1940Artie Shaw“Frenesi”
RCA Victor
12
[1]
1941
March 15, 1941Glenn Miller“Song of the Volga Boatmen”
Bluebird
1
[1]
March 22, 1941Artie Shaw“Frenesi”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
March 29, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“Amapola (Pretty Little Poppy)”
Decca
10
[1]
June 7, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“My Sister and I”
Decca
1
[1]
June 14, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“Maria Elena”
Decca
1
[1]
June 21, 1941Sammy Kaye“Daddy”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
June 28, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“My Sister and I”
Decca
1
[1]
July 5, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“Maria Elena”
Decca
1
[1]
July 12, 1941Sammy Kaye“Daddy”
RCA Victor
7
[1]
August 30, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“Green Eyes (Aquellos Ojos Verdes)”
Decca
4
[1]
September 27, 1941Jimmy Dorsey“Blue Champagne”
Decca
1
[1]
October 4, 1941Freddy Martin“Piano Concerto in B Flat”
Bluebird
8
[1]
November 29, 1941Glenn Miller“Chattanooga Choo Choo”
Bluebird
3
[1]
December 20, 1941Glenn Miller“Elmer’s Tune”
Bluebird
1
[1]
December 27, 1941Glenn Miller“Chattanooga Choo Choo”
Bluebird
6
[1]
1942
February 7, 1942Glenn Miller“A String of Pearls”
Bluebird
1
[1]
February 14, 1942Woody Herman“Blues in the Night (My Mama Done Tol’ Me)”
Decca
1
[1]
February 21, 1942Glenn Miller“A String of Pearls”
Bluebird
1
[1]
February 28, 1942Glenn Miller“Moonlight Cocktail”
Bluebird
10
[1]
May 9, 1942Jimmy Dorsey“Tangerine”
Decca
6
[1]
June 20, 1942Harry James“Sleepy Lagoon”
Columbia
4
[1]
July 18, 1942Kay Kyser“Jingle Jangle Jingle”
Columbia
8
[1]
September 12, 1942Glenn Miller“(I’ve Got a Gal In) Kalamazoo”
RCA Victor
7
[1]
October 31, 1942Bing Crosby“White Christmas”
Decca
11
[1]
1943
January 16, 1943Tommy Dorsey“There Are Such Things”
RCA Victor
4
[1]
February 13, 1943Harry James“I Had The Craziest Dream”
Columbia
2
[1]
February 27, 1943“There Are Such Things”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
March 6, 1943Harry James“I’ve Heard That Song Before”
Columbia
12
[1]
May 29, 1943Glenn Miller“That Old Black Magic”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
June 5, 1943Harry James“I’ve Heard That Song Before”
Columbia
1
[1]
June 12, 1943Benny Goodman“Taking A Chance On Love”
Columbia
3
[1]
July 3, 1943The Song Spinners“Comin’ In On A Wing And A Prayer”
Decca
3
[1]
July 24, 1943Dick Haymes“You’ll Never Know”
Decca
4
[1]
August 21, 1943Tommy Dorsey“In the Blue of Evening”
RCA Victor
3
[1]
September 11, 1943Bing Crosby“Sunday, Monday Or Always”
Decca
7
[1]
October 30, 1943Al Dexter“Pistol Packin’ Mama”
Okeh
1
[1]
November 6, 1943Mills Brothers“Paper Doll”
Decca
12
[1]
1944
January 29, 1944Glen Gray“My Heart Tells Me (Should I Believe My Heart?)”
Decca
5
[1]
March 4, 1944Jimmy Dorsey“Besame Mucho (Kiss Me Much)”
Decca
7
[1]
April 22, 1944Guy Lombardo“It’s Love-Love-Love”
Decca
2
[1]
May 6, 1944Bing Crosby“I Love You”
Decca
5
[1]
June 10, 1944Harry James“I’ll Get By (As Long as I Have You)”
Columbia
3
[1]
July 1, 1944Bing Crosby“I’ll Be Seeing You”
Decca
1
[1]
July 8, 1944Harry James“I’ll Get By (As Long as I Have You)”
Columbia
1
[1]
July 15, 1944Bing Crosby“I’ll Be Seeing You”
Decca
3
[1]
August 5, 1944Bing Crosby“Swinging On A Star”
Decca
9
[1]
October 7, 1944Mills Brothers“You Always Hurt The One You Love”
Decca
1
[1]
October 14, 1944Dinah Shore“I’ll Walk Alone”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
October 21, 1944Mills Brothers“You Always Hurt The One You Love”
Decca
2
[1]
November 4, 1944Dinah Shore“I’ll Walk Alone”
RCA Victor
3
[1]
November 25, 1944Mills Brothers“You Always Hurt The One You Love”
Decca
2
[1]
December 9, 1944The Ink Spots and Ella Fitzgerald“I’m Making Believe”
Decca
2
[1]
December 23, 1944Bing Crosby and The Andrews Sisters“Don’t Fence Me In”
Decca
8
[1]
1945
February 17, 1945The Andrews Sisters“Rum and Coca-Cola”
Decca
7
[1]
April 7, 1945Les Brown & Doris Day“My Dreams Are Getting Better All The Time”
Columbia
7
[1]
May 26, 1945Les Brown & Doris Day“Sentimental Journey”
Columbia
9
[1]
July 28, 1945Johnny Mercer“On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe”
Capitol
7
[1]
September 15, 1945Perry Como“Till The End Of Time”
RCA Victor
9
[1]
November 17, 1945Sammy Kaye“Chickery Chick”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
November 24, 1945Harry James“It’s Been A Long, Long Time”
Columbia
2
[1]
December 8, 1945Bing Crosby and The Les Paul Trio“It’s Been A Long, Long Time”
Decca
1
[1]
December 15, 1945Sammy Kaye“Chickery Chick”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
December 22, 1945Harry James“It’s Been A Long, Long Time”
Columbia
1
[1]
December 29, 1945Sammy Kaye“Chickery Chick”
RCA Victor
1
[1]
1946
January 5, 1946Freddy Martin“Symphony”
RCA Victor
2
[1]
January 19, 1946Bing Crosby and Carmen Cavallaro“I Can’t Begin To Tell You”
Decca
1
[1]
January 26, 1946Vaughn Monroe“Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!”
RCA Victor
5
[1]
March 2, 1946Betty Hutton“Doctor, Lawyer, Indian Chief”N/A
1
[1]
March 9, 1946Johnny Mercer“Personality”N/A
1
[1]
March 16, 1946Frankie Carle“Oh! What it Seemed to Be”N/A
6
[1]
April 27, 1946Sammy Kaye“I’m A Big Girl Now”N/A
1
[1]
May 4, 1946Perry Como“Prisoner of Love”♪ (1946)N/A
3
[1]
May 25, 1946The Ink Spots“The Gypsy”N/A
10
[1]
August 3, 1946Perry Como“Surrender”N/A
1
[1]
August 10, 1946Eddy Howard“To Each His Own”N/A
3
[1]
August 31, 1946Freddy Martin“To Each His Own”N/A
2
[1]
September 14, 1946Frank Sinatra“Five Minutes More”N/A
1
[1]
September 21, 1946The Ink Spots“To Each His Own”N/A
1
[1]
September 28, 1946Frank Sinatra“Five Minutes More”N/A
1
[1]
October 5, 1946Eddy Howard“To Each His Own”N/A
2
[1]
October 19, 1946Frankie Carle“Rumors Are Flying”N/A
8
[1]
December 14, 1946Kay Kyser“Ole Buttermilk Sky”N/A
2
[1]
December 28, 1946Sammy Kaye“The Old Lamp-Lighter”N/A
7
[1]
1947
February 15, 1947The King Cole Trio“(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons”N/A
1
[1]
February 22, 1947Count Basie“Open The Door, Richard!”N/A
1
[1]
March 1, 1947Freddy Martin“Managua, Nicaragua”N/A
2
[1]
March 15, 1947Ted Weems“Heartaches”N/A
12
[1]
June 7, 1947Art Lund“Mam’selle”N/A
2
[1]
June 21, 1947The Harmonicats“Peg O’ My Heart”N/A
1
[1]
June 28, 1947Perry Como“Chi-Baba, Chi-Baba (My Bambino Go to Sleep)”N/A
3
[1]
July 19, 1947The Harmonicats“Peg O’ My Heart”N/A
3
[1]
August 9, 1947Tex Williams“Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette)”N/A
6
[1]
September 20, 1947Francis Craig“Near You”♪ (1947)N/A
12
[1]
December 13, 1947Vaughn Monroe“Ballerina”N/A
10
[1]
1948
February 21, 1948Art Mooney“I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover”N/A
3
[1]
March 13, 1948Peggy Lee“Mañana (Is Soon Enough for Me)”N/A
9
[1]
May 15, 1948Nat King Cole“Nature Boy”N/A
7
[1]
July 3, 1948Kay Kyser“Woody Wood-Pecker”N/A
6
[1]
August 14, 1948Al Trace“You Call Everybody Darlin'”N/A
2
[1]
August 28, 1948Pee Wee Hunt“Twelfth Street Rag”N/A
6
[1]
October 9, 1948Margaret Whiting“A Tree In The Meadow”N/A
2
[1]
October 23, 1948Pee Wee Hunt“Twelfth Street Rag”♪ (1948)N/A
2
[1]
November 6, 1948Dinah Shore“Buttons And Bows”N/A
9
[1]
1949
January 8, 1949Spike Jones“All I Want For Christmas (is My Two Front Teeth)”N/A
1
[1]
January 15, 1949Dinah Shore“Buttons And Bows”N/A
1
[1]
January 22, 1949Evelyn Knight“A Little Bird Told Me”N/A
7
[1]
March 12, 1949Blue Barron“Cruising Down the River”N/A
2
[1]
April 2, 1949Russ Morgan“Cruising Down the River”N/A
7
[1]
May 14, 1949Vaughn Monroe“Riders In The Sky (A Cowboy Legend)”♪ (1949)N/A
11
[1]
July 30, 1949Perry Como“Some Enchanted Evening”N/A
5
[1]
September 3, 1949Vic Damone“You’re Breaking My Heart”N/A
4
[1]
October 1, 1949Frankie Laine“That Lucky Old Sun”N/A
8
[1]

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