Friday, 24 May 2013

George Strait 60th No. 1 – Fix For A King?

George Strait 60th No. 1 – Fix For A King? 

George Straits current single “Give It All We Got Tonight” topped the Charts Chart giving the country superstar his 60th No.1.

In an EB Media Press Release dated Tues May 14, 2013, the Blurb stated:
The song is poised to be the country patriarch’s 60th career No. 1, an accomplishment no artist except the 60-year old Strait has come close to achieving.
Brad Paisley was one who joined George Strait’s 60 For 60 campaign with a video about George’s influence on his career. Paisley joined stars like Luke Bryan, Lady Antebellum, Eric Church and more in support of George’s pending 60th #1 single of his career before his 61st Birthday (May 18, 1952) 
“Sixty For Sixty” movement >> YouTube -
Lots of artists continued to share their thoughts on the "King of Country" in their favourite 60 for 60 moment -
In newsletters received on May 17 from Universal Music Group and the CMA they wrote:
And, don’t forget to congratulate the 16-time CMA Award winner on his latest achievement, scoring his 60th #1 hit, "Give It All We Got Tonight!" Hit up to send him a shout out

This was rather suspicious and premature before any charts had been officially published?
Just where was George Straits’ team getting their information to make such a bold statement of fact?

On Wikipedia it was showing that his radio single “Give It All We Got Tonight” was No.1 on the Billboard Airplay chart?
Wikipedia snapshot (May 16, 2013)

This was false and later corrected as the No. 1 belonged to Florida Georgia Line with "Get Your Shine On” on the Billboard chart published May 13th. Radio station XM58 Prime Country declared that GIAWGT was "sitting at #1 on the Billboard Airplay chart right now!
According to the Twitter, the song was being played non-stop on a couple of stations even for a whole hour in order to boost the spin count and thus manipulate a chart!
The Billboard move by Hot Country Songs to include streams and actual sales along with airplay therefore validates their decision because airplay-only is easily manipulated / bought with co-ordination with radio stations and labels. Such co-ordination has recently happened with Hunter Hayes latest single after the ACM Awards, Blake Shelton’s release of “Boys Round Here” and Kenny Chesney’s album release
The massive push in which George’s single gained 9.4 million audience on Mediabase and 6.8 million on Billboard has to be pre-programmed by radio PD's working with MCA Nashville and not necessarily fans requests calling radio.
As Straits birthday neared, the song suddenly spiked gaining 600-800K a day, followed by a further “60 for 60” ramp to gain between a 1.5 -1.9 million audience at the start of this past week.
This resembled an absurd, “manufactured push” to the number #1 line, more like “Sixty FIX Sixty”!
It feels like more corporate control, with labels promo teams employing under-the-table deals? Were these the actions taken by MCA Nashville?

In a YouTube, uploaded on May 17, 2013 (3 days before the Mediabase and Billboard Country Airplay charts were published)
Country stars Lady Antebellum, Brad Paisley, Miranda Lambert, Hunter Hayes, Little Big Town, Kix Brooks, Gary Allan and many more along with George Strait's friends are seen congratulating him on his history making 60 #1 singles and wishing him a happy birthday. >> YouTube 

Was this filmed days before in anticipation of a 60th No.1?
Quite a feat or a pre-planned radio No.1 deal?

“Give It All We Got Tonight” was first released on October 29, 2012 as the first single from his 28th studio album, LOVE IS EVERYTHING, which dropped on May 14th.
On the Billboard Country Airplay Chart published May 20th it had moved from No.6 to No.2 on the chart with Darius Rucker’s cut of “Wagon Wheel” blocking its path to the No.1 slot.
“GIAWGT” gained the Most Increased Audience honour with a 38.2 million audience (+6.847); receiving 6,338 plays (+1230)
On the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart published May 16th (Chart week May 25th) the single was up 2 places from No.12 to No.10

So where was George Strait sitting at No.1?
The answer was on the Mediabase chart published May 20th for the Tracking week May 12 - May 18. The single had jumped from No.6 to No1.

About Mediabase - A division of Clear Channel Communications, Inc. it is a music industry service that monitors radio station airplay in 180 US and Canadian markets.
The data is based on the most played songs on terrestrial and satellite radio. The charts and airplay data are used on many popular radio countdown shows and televised music awards programs.

I didn’t realize we were making history,” George said. “I just hoped we were putting out music that my fans would enjoy. As always, I’m thankful to the fans and country radio for their support on all 60 of these number one songs as well as my entire career. They are the ones who made this happen.”
It came down to the last minute (??) as George turned 61 on Saturday, May 18. “I may be 61,” George said, “but I don’t feel a day over 60.”

George thanks the fans >> YouTube
Artists share GS memories - Video
The amount of support shown by fans, industry and especially country radio to give George his 60th No. 1 single is the ultimate testament in a format that has been defined by his music,” Royce Risser, SVP Promotion for Universal Music Group Nashville, said. “No one is more deserving of this accomplishment than George Strait, the undeniable King of Country Music. Happy Birthday George!”
George Strait gets his 60th No. 1
The CMA congratulates George Strait for the unprecedented milestone of becoming the first artist ever to have 60 No. 1 singles, check out this CMA Close UP Article .
They state “it was the No. 1 song played on Country radio for the week, and it happened as Strait was still 60 years old — but just barely.”
Well it was not No.1 on a Billboard chart.

Several of the main country music sites ran with the No.1 story:
Taste Of Country - “We sure wouldn’t mind seeing Strait go 80 for 80! But for now, we’ll just say congratulations to the King of Country on his 60th No. 1 single”
AOL's The Boot - Mission complete! George Strait's 60 for 60 campaign was a success
Country Weekly - And we at Country Weekly would like to add our congratulations and wishes. Happy birthday, King George! It's our pleasure to "cover" you!

The Tennessean - George Strait earns his 60th No. 1 song...MCA Nashville was confident on Friday that the song was going to No. 1 today, so the company is calling the “Sixty for Sixty” campaign a success.
USA Today - George Strait turned 61 on Saturday. Today, he gets a belated birthday present: His single Give It All We Got Tonight hits the top of USA Today’s  country airplay chart, giving the country great the 60th No. 1 single of his career.

Will MCA make an attempt at a No.1 before George’s 62nd birthday?
When will a campaign for 61 at 61 begin at the expense for airplay for other artists!?

George Strait has one date left in his final tour “The Cowboy Rides Away” on June 1 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
The Fame member is the highest ranked country act on Pollstar’s 2013 Worldwide Tickets Chart.
Dates for the second leg of his tour, taking place in 2014, will be announced later this year.

On May 22nd George’s 40th studio album LOVE IS EVERYTHING, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums Chart this week, selling 119,843 units in its first week.
That also earned Strait the No. 2 position on the Billboard Top 200.

So congrats on the No.1 album chart topper but the “Give It All We Got Tonight”  No.1 single seemed like a dodgy affair?
Was it a fix for a king?

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