Novel Translation

The Greatest Showman – Chapter 91

Chapter 91 – First time on the list

“Double celebration?”

Now it was Renly’s turn to be confused. As the person involved, how could he not know what else he had achieved today?

Everyone on the scene raised their hands high, applauding and celebrating for Renly—celebrating him getting his second role in his acting career. However, Renly, who was standing on the stage, was still puzzled.

Stanley who immediately noticed Renly’s confusion, burst into laughter, and then said to Neil, “See, I told you, he definitely didn’t know anything, not a single clue about it.”

Neil, however, didn’t care at all about that. He excitedly rubbed his hands together, “Believe me, believe me, you’ll be just as happy as us when you see this!” Then he turned around to the back of the stage, found a rope, pulled it down, and a banner “swooshed” down. The large letters on it accurately conveyed the message:

Congratulations “Cleopatra” for entering the Billboard Hot 100!

Renly’s eyes widened, his teeth biting down hard, almost dislocating his jaw. This…this…was even more unbelievable than him getting the role for the movie “Buried” and at the same time achieving victory against Ryan Reynolds. More accurately, this was a fairy tale. Even if Renly tried to guess a hundred times, he would never have associated this surprise party with the Billboard Hot 100!

“See, I told you!” Neil exclaimed loudly, his face full of unrestrained excitement. “I told you!” Then he rushed over and gave Renly a big hug. “It’s happening, it’s really happening! Can you believe it? The latest Billboard Hot 100 singles chart was just announced this morning, and ‘Cleopatra’ has actually made it onto the list!”

Just a short while ago, riding on the popularity of “The Pacific,” “Cleopatra” had climbed the iTunes real-time download chart, and Renly thought that was surreal enough. At that time, he believed this was just a fleeting moment and didn’t take it too seriously. But things have evolved beyond Renly’s expectations.

Three weeks ago, in a special feature in “The Fader” magazine, “Cleopatra” was strongly recommended, once again elevating the song’s popularity in a surprising way.

“The Fader” is an independent professional magazine dedicated to the North American music industry, that was founded in 1999. It quickly became a best-selling magazine with its lively style, sharp language, and humorous titles. Its professional attitude and music reviews became its major selling points. In just five years, it rapidly grew, surpassing two other independent music magazines, “Spin” and “Blender,” even posing a threat to the top music magazine in the industry, “Rolling Stone,” forcing the latter to experiment with a new style.

In 2005, “The Fader” was voted the best music magazine of the year in the United States.

However, in recent years, the powerful impact of the Internet has begun to challenge the dominant position of traditional print media. Many magazines, including “The Fader,” had faced bottlenecks in their operations. Despite several attempts at reformation and innovation, “The Fader” officially announced the cessation of its print version in April of last year, while the online version continues to be published.

Although print magazines have become a thing of the past, the online version of “The Fader” continues to receive enthusiastic support, especially among the younger generation of readers. Leveraging the immediacy of platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and the rest of the Internet, “The Fader’s” influence has not only remained but has also increased. Its authority is unquestionable, and many people are willing to discover independent musicians recommended by “The Fader” in its music recommendations articles.

In the first week of May’s issue, Clyde Coughlin, a professional music critic writing for “The Fader,” wrote a special music review on folk music.

In the first half of the article he mentioned the dire situation of folk music in the United States, as even among independent singers, folk musicians have become almost extinct. The true flourishing of folk music is currently happening in the United Kingdom and Ireland, where every year one can see a batch of outstanding music and creators emerging.

Clyde wrote that he believes that the true reason for the current situation lies in the lack of depth in American music. Folk music is a musical form that requires a profound literary background and profound thinking ability. Since Bob Dylan, for nearly twenty years, the American music scene has not produced any folk creators worthy of appreciation. In particular, thanks to the strong onslaught of commercial interests, music, like movies, began to industrialize, gradually losing its distinctive features and falling into an inescapable quagmire.

Just as Hollywood is losing its artistry and becoming a paradise for commercial films, North American music is also heading down this irreversible path, not only folk music but also pop, hip-hop, electronic, and other music genres.

In the latter part of the article, Clyde recommended some noteworthy folk singers.

First and foremost the band “Train” was mentioned. Their song “Hey, Soul Sister” should strictly be classified as alternative rock, but the song’s blend of folk, soul, rock, and other styles, formed the unique temperament of the band “Train”, which won them a lot of applause. This single did not attract any attention when it first came out, but with word of mouth, it gradually entered the public eye and ultimately achieved incredible success.

At the time of this article’s publication, “Hey, Soul Sister” had already entered the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. This marked the first folk single to achieve such success in the past decade, ever since Elton John, sparking a chorus of astonishment. This achievement served as the motivation for Clyde to write this article.

In addition to them, singers such as Gotye, Iron&Wine, Jack Johnson, The Weepies, Mumford&Sons, and others had also caught Clyde’s attention.

Among them, the name of Renly Hall was prominently featured.

“He’s a mysterious guy, with hardly any relevant information available for him. So far, he has only created one single, being so low profile that he is not much different from a missing person. But just with this one song, this newcomer managed to capture everyone’s attention.

‘Cleopatra’ is a cheerful yet poignant single, with poetic and profoundly beautiful words and lines. It nostalgically reminds people of the moving nature of music. The lyrics tell the story of Cleopatra, one of history’s most heralded and tragic women, while also telling a story about women, love, and freedom. The lively notes and the bitter sadness, under the moving interpretation, burst forth with an indescribable charm, making it impossible for people to resist them.

‘And the only gifts from my Lord were a birth and a divorce

But I’ve read this script and the costume fits, so I’ll play my part’

Life is like a play, and everyone is just an actor on the stage. However, they are bound by fate and can only follow the script written by God, like puppets on strings, losing their freedom, their lives, and their souls. These poetic and beautiful words touch the softness in the hearts of every listener, bringing a vague sorrow to their eyes. With a surging reflection following, reminiscent of Bob Dylan.

Renly Hall, his future is worth looking forward to.”

A brief music review, yet sparing no words of praise, it is evident that Clyde admires him.

After this article came out, it undoubtedly sparked a widespread discussion. Whether it was the enthusiasm for folk music or the attention to the recommended singers, a frenzy of debate erupted on the Internet, and Renly naturally became the focus of attention.

At first, people did not associate the singer Renly with the actor Renly. After all, there are too many newcomers in the entertainment industry every year, and the craze for “The Pacific” has subsided for almost a month since its airing and the influence of YouTube videos is also very limited. However, the truth was quickly discovered—after all, this is the age of the Internet, and the powerfulness of netizens goes without saying. After that, the netizens went crazy.

A promising new actor turned out to be an exceptionally talented new singer? The expectations soared uncontrollably.

In just three short weeks, the exposure of “Cleopatra” began to rise at a visible speed. It first entered the top twenty on the iTunes real-time download chart, holding the sixteenth position and is still steadily climbing. The daily increase in downloads was significant, a truly encouraging sight. Subsequently, the video’s click-through rate on YouTube also skyrocketed, soaring from two million to a whopping twenty million, a tenfold increase!

When “The Pacific” was first broadcast, the YouTube video attracted considerable attention. However, objectively speaking, “The Pacific” is just a mini-series aired on cable television, having a limited influence. The real test for it will come after it enters the videotape market. Currently, its audience base is still relatively small, with perhaps one in a hundred searching for Renly due to the character Eugene “Sledgehammer” Sledge, and that was already quite rare. Compared to the billions of clicks commonly circulating through the Internet, the two million clicks that “Cleopatra” had didn’t seem like much.

This time, the powerful influence the “The Fader” has on the Internet was vividly demonstrated. “Cleopatra” even entered the ranks of the most popular videos for a week, attracting countless views. In addition to its twenty million clicks, the daily increase in click-through rate has exceeded five hundred thousand, showing no signs of slowing down. Even the number of likes has surpassed a hundred thousand.

Unexpectedly, the overwhelming popularity of “Cleopatra” sparked interest in the singer Renly Hall among netizens. They began searching for information about him, and Google links attracted them to the relevant pages of “The Pacific,” thus generating another wave of enthusiastic discussions about the series. The threads on the Yahoo community became lively once again.

This is the result that Clyde did not anticipate before beginning to write that review of the folk music.

Before, TV series brought attention to music; now, music has boosted the popularity of a TV series. As just a newcomer, the number of discussions about Renly in just three months has completely deviated from the normal track.

Therefore, a miracle happened!

Without a physical album or this song playing on the radio, “Cleopatra” unbelievably entered the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, becoming Renly’s first officially charted song!

T/N – Bruh, this chapter was a pain in the neck to translate. So, if you see any mistake please write it down in the comments.

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