Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Billboard Chart News April 18, 2016

Country Billboard Chart News April 18, 2016

In Brief: Billboard Country Charts (Chart issue week of April 30, 2016)

Country Album Chart ** No.1 (18 non-consecutive weeks) TRAVELLER Chris Stapleton
Hot Country Songs ** No.1 (1 week) ** Somewhere On A Beach” Dierks Bentley
Country Airplay ** No.1 (1 week) ** "I Like The Sound Of That” Rascal Flatts
Country Digital Songs ** No.1 (3 non-consecutive weeks) ** “Humble and Kind” Tim McGraw

Billboard Top 200 / Country Album Chart News (Chart issue week of April 30, 2016)

The Billboard 200 chart measures multi-metric album consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).

The Lumineers nabbed their first No.1 album on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart with CLEOPATRA. The set starts atop the chart with 125,000 equivalent album units earned in the week ending April 14, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 108,000 were in traditional album sales.
Cleopatra is The Lumineers’ second album, and was released through Dualtone Records on April 8. It follows the trio’s breakthrough self-titled debut album, which was released in 2012 and rose to No. 2 on the chart the following year. It has sold 1.7 million copies, thanks in large part to the popularity of its hit song "Ho Hey." The track peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Cleopatra’s lead single, “Ophelia,” has spent six weeks at No. 1 on the Adult Alternative Songs chart, and has so far peaked at No. 78 on the Hot 100.

The band’s Cleopatra World Tour kicked off April 14 in Bristol, England, and heads to the U.S. on May 21, playing Houston’s White Oak Music Hall. The trek continues through America until June 19, and then heads back to Europe.

In a Press Release (dated April 19, 2016) The Americana Music Association congratulated its 2013 Americana Honors & Awards nominee (and 2013 GRAMMY Americana Album of the Year nominee) The Lumineers on its No.1 Billboard Top 200 debut.
Along with recent releases from Margo Price, Bonnie Raitt, Chris Stapleton, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Hayes Carll, and Lucinda Williams, The Lumineers' Cleopatra demonstrates the continued growth of Americana as one of the most influential movements on the musical landscape today.
"Every week it seems there's another Americana act on the Billboard sales chart who are dedicated to their artistic passion and reaping the benefits of that commitment," said Jed Hilly, Executive Director of the Americana Music Association. "I am thrilled for The Lumineers' success and can't wait to see them when they open the Americana Music Festival & Conference this fall in Nashville."

Chris Stapleton with TRAVELLER dipped 2-3 with 48,000 units (down 34%)

Billboard Top Country Albums (Chart issue week of April 23, 2016)

Chris Stapleton with TRAVELLER (Mercury/Universal Music Group) held at No.1 on Billboard Top Country Albums selling 39,125 copies (down 34%) and ruled atop the chart for a 18th week and the set now has a 50-week total of 1,197,900.

Joey + Rory with HYMNS (Farmhouse/Gaither/Capitol CMG) fell 15-16 on the Billboard 200 and held at #2 Country selling 19,019 copies (down 10%; #5 Billboard Top Albums; 9-week total of 315,200. Their compilation ALBUM COLLECTION (Walmart Exclusive) fell 10-13 selling 2,961 (down 28%).
Carrie Underwood with STORYTELLER held fell 29-31 on the Billboard 200, holding at #3 Country (8,850 sales; down 7%; 25-week total 562,800)
Sam Hunt with MONTEVALLO fell 20-27 on the BB200 slipping 4-5 Country (5,883 sales; down 24%; 77-week total 1,105,000)

Of Note:
Hayes Carll with LOVERS AND LEAVERS (Hwy87 | Thirty Tigers) made a debut at #105 on the Billboard 200, #33 on Billboard Top Albums and #4 on Billboard Folk Albums selling 6,072 copies.
Critical reception for Hayes Carll’s Lovers and Leavers:

AllMusic (Rating; 4 STARS) Songwriter Hayes Carll has always placed his craft first. His best work has been defined by its rich irony, a keen eye for quirky images, and quick, catchy melodies that were equally at home in a honky tonk, a car, or on a festival stage. Lovers and Leavers, his Joe Henry-produced fifth album is a departure. It's sparser, airier, more directly confessional...Carll presents these songs with open hands and heart; he made Lovers and Leavers to prove something to himself. With the canny assistance of Henry's sensitive production, the songwriter's vulnerability rises into open view and elevates his craft along with it. In Carll's world -- and hopefully ours -- love wins, no matter what.

Saving Country Music (Rating: 1 3/4 of 2 Guns Up; 7.5 of 10) Hayes Carll’s Lovers and Leavers—his first record in over five years—feels especially long and winding....Lovers and Leavers finds Hayes less in the character of some self-loathing drunk and disorderly, and
more in the pattern of self-reflection and the introspective songwriting of a seasoned writer who can take simple observations and turn them into poetry. “Stripped-down” is not just an adjective in this case, these songs are nearly butt naked. 

A little bit of percussion and bass, maybe some lead parts sprinkled here and there, and a few louder songs. But overall this is a minimalist effort, and there’s nothing keeping you from reflecting on the words to Carll’s songs...Only one song will truly remind you of old Hayes—“Love Is So Easy.” Otherwise, it’s a new day. But six years have passed, and six important ones. Humans either spend their lives being stuck in “glory days” mode never evolving beyond their high school or college selves, or they’re in a constant cycle of improvement, no matter where the baseline starts. Though the former can be quite fun, it can leave the spirit unfulfilled. Hayes has moved on, and so has his music. And the true friends are the ones who don’t resent you for maturing or try to enable your backsliding tendencies, but take that journey forward with you.

Pop Matters (Rating: 7/10) …Stripped of any prior barroom antics, Joe Henry’s no-frills production keeps the focus on Carll’s urbane lyrics. An acoustic album, Henry sprinkles in percussion, piano and pedal steel sparingly, save for the Waitsian sendup “Sake of the Song”—one of three songs written with Darrell Scott—a brooding homage to craftsmanship that doubles as a pointed critique of style over substance. Personal and plain, Lovers and Leavers is music as catharsis well worth the wait, with Carll urging all to “Tell your truth however you choose / And do it all for the sake of the song.” Spoken like a true poet.

Outside of Top 25 Country Albums

Charlie Farley with ALL I'VE BEEN THROUGH made a debut at #35 Country selling 1,100 copies

Critical reception for Charlie Farley’s All I've Been Through:
(8 April 2016) 13 Tracks/ Time: 43:14 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com

Country Underground The record starts off with the title track and it sets the tone the rest of the way. “Yea I like to drink a few, but beer ain’t all that I can brew. You know I like the mud
too, but mud ain’t all that I’ve been through”. To me, he’s pretty much saying, “Yea I talk about the mud and drinking, but that’s not what defines me as an artist, nor does it define me as a person.” This first track speaks to me as a listener and it pulls me in to want to learn more about who Charlie Farley really is.....So now we come to the song on the record that punches you in the gut and gives you chills the second Farley begins. 
“Red Rose”, a song written about a time in his life that is still dear to him, the passing of his sister. This song is one of the best songs on the entire album and could easily be put up there with some of today’s “top” country artists....It’s not always about beers, girls and trucks and mud isn’t definitely not all that Farley has been through.

Lainey Wilson with her 10 track TOUGHER (Lone Chief Records) made a debut at No.44 selling 700 copies
10 Tracks/ Time: 36:33 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com
Lainey Wilson, your typical country girl, was born and raised in Baskin, Louisiana. It all started at her Kindergarten graduation when she sang “Butterfly Kisses”. The country music industry is a great way for Lainey to reach out to people and do what she loves to do all at the same time. 
Lainey has entered and won many contests throughout the Ark-La-Miss using her original songs. She has co-written several songs with Nashville writers and signed a publishing/developmental deal with Cupit Records. 

Lainey signed with Lone Chief Records in late-summer of 2015 and was on the road with friend/producer, Frank Foster.

Watch her video for >> "Tougher" (Lone Chief Records) directed by Brett Bortle published on Mar 22, 2016 (over 18K views in first 20 days). 

Lainey Wilson feat. Frank Foster "Where My House Stood" published on Apr 5, 2016 received over 17K views in first 5 days.

Critical reception for Lainey Wilson’s Tougher:

Your Life In A Song (Rating: Positive Review) This is a country girl who sings country music. Sounds obvious but today’s freeway to success is often based upon a pop-country sound. We are never far from a slide guitar and Wilson’s sultry vocals tell some fine stories....The albums opener ‘Gravel’ is a song that would be very much at home on a Maddie and Tae album. A slide guitar driven backing and a very bouncy feel to a song that has the ability to cross over...Another highlight is ‘Two Sides Of Bad’, a “turn up the volume” song that is a foot tapping delight and should be longer!...A serious stand-out has to be ‘I Make Myself’, a powerful ballad where the sultry vocals and slides combine to create an album highlight.  The brooding subject matter of recovering from a broken relationship is complemented by the dark, atmospheric production...The difficulty that an artist like Lainey Wilson has is getting her music heard. The exposure that this album has had is modest to date. This ought to change.

Year-To-Date Albums
6,607,000 (Physical sales 4,343,000 (down 9%) + Digital sales 2,264,000 (down -15.0%)) which is 8.2% down at the same point in 2015 (7,198,000 sales)
Year-To-Date Digital Tracks

27,345,000 down 19.6% at the same point in 2015 (34,027,000)

Billboard Hot Country Songs (Chart issue week of April 30, 2016)

On Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart - which blends:
a) All-format airplay, as monitored by BDS
b) Sales, as tracked by Nielsen SoundScan and
c) Streaming, (tracked by Nielsen BDS from such services as Spotify, Muve, Slacker, Rhapsody, Rdio and Xbox Music, among others) according to BDS it results in:

Dierks Bentley earned his 11th No.1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, and first in nearly four years, as “Somewhere On A Beach” (Capitol Nashville) broke 4-1 on the April 30 list.
The track tops Hot Country Songs, which encompasses sales, streaming and airplay, as it hits new highs on Country Digital Songs (4-2, despite a 15% decrease to 34,000 sold in the week ending April 14, according to Nielsen Music), Country Airplay (7-3, up by 13% to 40 million audience impressions) and Country Streaming Songs (5-4, lifting by 5% to 2.4 million U.S. streams).

Bentley cruised to his first Hot Country Songs No.1 since “5-1-5-0,” which topped the Aug. 4, 2012, chart (when the tally was powered solely by airplay). That track completed a run of three consecutive leaders, following “Home” (March24, 2012) and “Am I the Only One” (Sept. 3, 2011).
Written by Michael Tyler, Jaron Boyer, Alexander Palmer, Dave Kuncio and Josh Mirenda, “Beach” is the launch single from Bentley’s eighth studio album, BLACK, due May 27. The set sports guest appearances by Maren Morris (“I’ll Be the Moon”) and Elle King (“Different for Girls”).
“When Dierks first played us new music from the Black album, ‘Somewhere on a Beach’ felt like the anthem he needed going into spring and summer as his tour was kicking into full gear,” Universal Music Group Nashville president Cindy Mabe told Billboard. “Having come off the depth of [Bentley’s 2014 album] Riser, I think it was good to let the fans have a fun party song and let the new album evolve from there. I think this song is just the start of a sexy, different album for Dierks.”

Hot County Songs
** No.1 (1 week)/ Airplay Gainer ** “Somewhere On A Beach” Dierks Bentley
** Digital Gainer ** No.16 “Little Bit Of You” Chase Bryant
** Streaming Gainer ** No.19 “Lights Come On” Jason Aldean
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.36 “Flatliner” Cole Swindell feat. Dierks Bentley
Debut No.43 “Seven Spanish Angels” Adam Wakefield
Debut No.50 “Savior's Shadow” Blake Shelton

Billboard Country Airplay (Chart issue week of April 30, 2016)

Rascal Flatts with “I Like the Sound of That” (Big Machine) crowns Billboard Country Airplay in its 31st week (2-1), gaining by 4% to 46.513 million in audience impressions. 

The song is the 13th Country Airplay leader for the trio (Gary LeVox and cousins Jay DeMarcus and Joe Don Rooney). “We love the sound of being at the top of the charts. What an honor,” DeMarcus told Billboard.

Like Bentley on Hot Country Songs, Rascal Flatts ended a nearly four-year break between No.1s on Country Airplay, earning its first since “Banjo” (May12, 2012). 
Having first led with “These Days” in 2002, Rascal Flatts ties Zac Brown Band for the most Country Airplay No.1s among groups of at least three members dating to the chart’s January 1990 inception. 

“Sound” is the fourth single from REWIND, following the No.3 peaking title track, “Payback” (No.21) and “Riot” (No.20).
What has made “Sound” perform so well at radio? “It has definitely been the strongest song we have seen from Rascal Flatts in a while, by a long shot, especially [in] research,” said Entercom Communications director of programming Mike Moore. “They’ve also maintained relevance and I think they are in a rebuild mode, much like Tim McGraw was a few years back.”
“Sound” was written by Jesse Frasure, Shay Mooney (lead vocalist of Dan + Shay) and pop singer-songwriter Meghan Trainor. “Writing this was an absolute blast, because it started out just sitting around talking with my co-writers,” said Mooney. “I had the title in my notes, after hearing someone say the phrase somewhere, which I’m pretty sure was about a restaurant. They thought it was a cool concept, so we just started playing around with melodies and ran with it.” Trainor co-wrote “Sound” before breaking through with her own 2014 eight-week Billboard Hot 100 No.1, “All About That Bass.” Having Rascal Flatts record “Sound” was Trainor’s “biggest dream come true,” she said in her first interview with Billboard in 2014.
Country Airplay welcomed a new top 10, as Blake Shelton’s “Came Here to Forget” (Warner Brothers/Warner Music Nashville) ascended 12-10 (27.8 million, up 6%). The track ushered in his 10th studio album, IF I’M HONEST (May 20). Shelton scored his 25th Country Airplay top 10, becoming the 13th act to reach the milestone. George Strait leads with 61.

Country Airplay
*** No.1 (1 week) *** "I Like The Sound Of That” Rascal Flatts 46.513 million audience (+1.951 million) / 8,197 radio plays (+181)
** Most Increased Audience ** No.3 “Somewhere on a Beach” Dierks Bentley 4.512 million audience gain
** Most Added ** No. 30 “Church Bells” Carrie Underwood (41 ADDS)
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.56 “Outskirts Of Heaven” Craig Campbell
Debut No.59 “Lonely Girl” Charles Kelley

Billboard Country Digital Singles Chart (Chart issue week of April 30, 2016)

Following on from the previous week’s chart when the 51st Annual Academy of Country Music Awards affected the chart, this frame saw some normality restored.
Tim McGraw with “Humble and Kind” (McGraw/Big Machine/Big Machine Label Group) returned to the top 2-1 (#11-17 Digital Songs; 42,000 sales; down 35%; 13-week total 397,000).
Dierks Bentley with “Somewhere On A Beach" rose 4-2 (34,000 sales; down 15%; #23-24 Digital Songs; 13-week total 322,000)
Blake Shelton with “Came Here to Forget” (Warner Bros./ WMN) held at #3 (28,000 sales; down 37%; #21-30 Digital Songs; 6-week total 241,000)
American Idol winner Trent Harmon with his debut country single "Falling" (Big Machine Records) climbed 16-4 selling 28,000 copies with a 2-week total of 52,000.
Cole Swindell with “You Should Be Here” was up 8-5 (28,000 sales; down 20%; #30-34 Digital Songs; 18-week total 522,000) and past the GOLD ½-million certification mark.
Chris Young duet with Cassadee Pope rose 7-6 (27,000 sales; down 27%; #28-35 Digital Songs; 13-week total 277,000).
Maren Morris with "My Church" (Columbia Nashville/Sony Music Nashville) lifted 9-7 (26,000 sales; down 19%; #33-36 Digital Songs; 14-week total 408,000).
Thomas Rhett with his ACM award winning song “Die A Happy Man” fell 5-9 (22,000 sales; down 45%; #24-42 Digital Songs; 30-week total 1,367,000) as his fast-rising hit "T-Shirt" rose 11-10 (22,000 sales; #38-43 Digital Songs; 13-week total 220,000)

Jason Aldean who had the #1 the previous week with a debut with new single "Lights Come On" (Broken Bow) fell 1-11 (20,000 sales; down 72%; #10-47 Digital Songs; 2-week total 90,000).
Cole Swindell feat. Dierks Bentley with “Flatliner” made a debut at No.18 selling 14,000 copies.

Outside of the Top 30
Adam Wakefield (The Voice contestant) with his cover of "Seven Spanish Angels" (Republic) made a debut at #31 (10K sales) .
Other Voice contestants peppered the chart: #53 Allison Porter with "Blue Bayou" (30K to date), Katie Basden with cover of Trish Yearwood’s "Georgia Rain" made a debut at #54 (5K sales) and Mary Sarah’s version of "(I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden" arrived at #63 (5K sales)

Country Aircheck MEDIABASE Chart

18 April 2016

Congrats to Rascal Flatts, Jack Purcell, Erik Powell, Jeff Davis, Alex Valentine, Brooke Diaz, Justin Newell and the entire Big Machine promotion staff on earning the No.1 spot with “I Like The Sound Of That.”
The song logged 8,782 radio spins (+407) and 61.2 million audience impressions (+2.738) with 28408 Total Points from 159 tracking stations for the tracking week April 10 to April 16, 2016 and published chart April 18th 2016.

The smooth, catchy track that Rolling Stone dubbed as "sweetly reminiscent of the trio's early days” was penned by Jesse Frasure, with pop star Meghan Trainor and Shay Mooney of country duo Dan + Shay. The chart-topping single is taken from their current album, REWIND (Big Machine Records), which debuted at No.1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, making Rascal Flatts one of only four acts from the SoundScan era to have eight consecutive studio albums debut in the top spot.
We've had a lot of fun with this single,” said Gary LeVox. “It’s a blessing and humbling to be achieving milestones such as these and it just motivates us even more to keep going on this crazy journey with our amazing fans.  A huge thank you to our friends at country radio and Big Machine family.  We can’t wait to catch everybody back out on the road this summer to celebrate.” 
The best-selling country vocal group of the past decade Rascal Flatts has scored 16 No1s, sold over 23.1 million albums, over 31 million digital downloads worldwide to date

Kudos to Shane Allen and the Capitol team on landing 31 adds for Charles Kelley’s Lonely Girl,” topping the week’s "Most Added" board.

For a detailed report check out Country Aircheck Weekly Issue 495 - April 18, 2016 [PDF File]
For the very latest up to the minute Mediabase Chart (Past 7 Days) go here - www.mediabase.com

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