Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Country Billboard Chart News March 28, 2016

Country Billboard Chart News March 28, 2016

In Brief: Billboard Country Charts (Chart issue week of April 9, 2016)

Country Album Chart ** No.1 (4 non-consecutive weeks) HYMNS Joey + Rory
Hot Country Songs ** No.1 (3 weeks) ** “You Should Be Here” Cole Swindell
Country Airplay ** No.1 (1 week) ** “You Should Be Here” Cole Swindell
Country Digital Songs ** No.1 (1 week) ** “Humble and Kind” Tim McGraw

Billboard Top 200 / Country Album Chart News (Chart issue week of April 9, 2016)

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

Gwen Stefani made a debut at No.1 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart (BB200) with THIS IS WHAT THE TRUTH FEELS LIKE, which earned her first chart-topper as a solo artist. The album, her third release, earned 84,000 equivalent album units
in the week ending March 24, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum it sold 76,000 in pure album sales.
This Is What the Truth Feels Like was released on March 18 through Interscope Records and is Stefani’s first solo album since 2006’s THE SWEET ESCAPE, which debuted and peaked at No. 3 (243,000 sold in its first week). Prior to that, she reached No. 5 in 2005 with LOVE. ANGEL. MUSIC. BABY., which was released in 2004 (bowing with 309,000 sold in its first week).
Rihanna’s ANTI slipped from No. 1 to No. 3 with 52,000 units (down 3%), Adele with 25 moves 2-4 (51,000 units; up less than %), Justin Bieber’s PURPOSE dipped 3-5 (47,000 units; down 3 percent), Chris
Country
Chris Stapleton with TRAVELLER rose 7-6 (33,000 units; down 4%)
22-year old Georgia country singer Kane Brown made a debut at No.9 with his new Chapter I (EP), his first release through Zone 4/RCA Nashville. It launched with 28,000 units (21,941 copies sold). Brown previously reached No. 40 with his self-released CLOSER EP, crowd-funded by Kickstarter, which has sold 38,300 copies since its release last June 2, 2015.
Joey + Rory with HYMNS rounded out the new Billboard 200’s top 10, as it descended 4-10 with 27,000 units (down 38%).

Billboard Top Country Albums (Chart issue week of April 9, 2016)

Joey + Rory with HYMNS (Farmhouse/Gaither/Capitol CMG) led Billboard Top Country Albums (based on pure sales) for a fourth frame (and third in succession) selling another 27,216 (down 38%). The inspirational set reigns over Top Christian Albums for a sixth week. It was the 5th biggest selling album on the all genres Top Albums. In six weeks it has sold 238,000 copies.

Chris Stapleton with TRAVELLER held at #2 Country selling 26, 064 copies (47-week total 1,075,900)

In his second week Randy Houser with FIRED UP (Stoney Creek/Broken Bow Music Group), (#30) sold 7,282 copies down 75% on the debut week (#30 Top albums) and fell 15-62 on the Billboard 200 and 3-6 Country.

Breakout country music recording artist Kane Brown with his 5 track EP CHAPTER 1 blew in at #9 on the BB200, #3 on Digital Albums, #7 Top albums and a #3 Billboard Top Country selling 21,941 copies.
Upon its release last week, Chapter 1 shot straight to the No. 1 spot on the iTunes Country Album chart as well as No.1 on the iTunes overall album chart.
In addition to co-writing “Used To Love You Sober”, Brown co-penned three more tracks on Chapter 1 including “There Goes My Everything” which rapidly rose to No. 8 on the Billboard Digital Country Songs Chart, selling over 22,000 downloads this week.
The 5-track collection includes Brown’s debut radio single and viral fan favorite “Used To Love You Sober” which boasts over 200,000 downloads and 2.2 million streams to date.
 “I’m so excited to release Chapter 1 – my fans have been so patient and supportive as I’ve worked on this project!” shared Brown. “From the writer’s room to the studio to playing these songs night after night on tour, it’s been an incredible experience. I’m grateful to my fans and can’t wait for what’s to come in the future but right now let’s start with Chapter 1!”
Named an “Artist To Watch” by Billboard, Huffington Post and HITS, Brown continues blazing cross-country on his first headlining tour notching 35+ sold-out dates – many markets selling out in less than 24 hours. In May, Brown teams up with Florida Georgia Line, Cole Swindell and The Cadillac Three for the 56-date 2016 Dig Your Roots Tour.
Brown heads to Las Vegas this weekend for his first ACM Awards, joining in the festivities with a headlining show at The Double Barrel at The Monte Carlo on Friday, April 1st.

Critical reception for Kane Brown’s Chapter 1:
5 Tracks/ Time: 14:45 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com

Sounds Like Nashville …..Brown has described his music as Chris Young's voice on a Sam Hunt track and it isn’t a far off stretch. Songs like “Last Minute Late Night” are easy to envision being sung by Young while the fast-paced slick beats are reminiscent to something Hunt would cut.....While some songs on Chapter 1 leave a greater mark than others, Brown’s EP encompasses five tracks that are enough to satiate his fans’ wait for the full-length album.

Bobby Bones & The Raging Idiots with his project THE CRITICS GIVE IT 5 STARS (Black River Entertainment) arrived at #41 BB200 (#4 Country) selling 11,486 copies
12 Tracks/ Time:  34:04 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com  | SPOTIFY
The band -- composed of nationally syndicated country radio morning host Bones and his show’s media producer and on-air personality Eddie Garcia -- landed a record deal in 2015 with Nashville-based independent label Black River Entertainment, best known for making a star of Kelsea Ballerini. Last fall the band released a six-song digital EP aimed at the kids' music market, The Raging Idiots Presents: The Raging Kidiots.

This new album’s comically manipulative title was no accident. “This is my only chance to make people say something,” Bones explained to Billboard. “I thought, well, maybe nobody will actually give us five stars, but people will have to say that’s the name of the record, and some people might get confused and think the critics are giving it five stars and it’s excellent, so they’ll just stumble into buying it. Let’s hope people accidentally mistake the album title for a real review.”
The project is packed with collaborations with A-list country stars including Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley and Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley. Garth Brooks provides un-credited background vocals on one track, although he is thanked in the set’s liner notes.
Sounds Like Nashville - ….Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots manage to impress on the 13-track release. For those in need of a mid-day pick-me-up the album more than succeeds with a few good laughs. Though the serious types may skip a few tracks, after giving a listen to “Fishin’ With My Dad,” Bones’ ability as a songwriter is undeniable.

The Dave Cobb produced project Various Artists SOUTHERN FAMILY (Import) made a bow at #37 on the BB200, #18 Top albums and #5 Billboard Top Country selling 10,897 copies.
Some families are more musical than others—like the one Dave Cobb assembled for his new concept album. Southern Family is a tribute to the soul of southern country music. These esteemed musicians, singers, and songwriters deliver a compelling and remarkable tribute to the families and places that shaped them. 

In Southern Family, you hear the results of each artist's individual recipe, but they're all cooking with a similar ingredient: the heritage of musician’s relief from the bone-aching labor of hard-working people.
Bringing big names like Miranda Lambert, Zac Brown and Chris Stapleton together with acclaimed artists like Jason Isbell, Anderson East and Brandy Clark, the project is full of custom-written songs about growing up in the South, all delivered in the rootsy, back-to-basics sound Dave used as producer of Chris’ CMA award- and Grammy award-winning album, Traveller.

Critical reception for Various Artists “Southern Family”:
12 Tracks/ Time: 50:58 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com | SPOTIFY

Allmusic (Rating: 4.5 STARS) More than a concept album, Dave Cobb's 2016 compilation Southern Family is a clarion call: the definition of a new south for a new millennium. This new south -- one with a reverence for the past, as defined by old tunes and handed-down traditions, but one unbeholden to conventions -- has been essayed by Cobb on his productions for Jamey Johnson, Chris Stapleton, and Sturgill Simpson, records that refurbish outlaw country for a new century. ... Southern Family crawls into focus with John Paul White's "Simple Song" and Jason Isbell's "God Is a Working Man," tunes that function as keynotes for the album.... Certain themes are cycled through -- usually family, loss, and love, sometimes arriving in a tangled ball -- but what resonates on Southern Family is how each singer/songwriter is faithful to their own voice within the grander tapestry Cobb has devised. It's a trick that telegraphs just how rich and complex this modern Southern Family actually is.

NPR (Rating: Positive) …Southern Family collects such moments in a bouquet of memories and treasured sentiments, in the process coalescing into one of the subtlest concept albums to ever bear that dangerously pretentious descriptor. Inspired by the 1979 album White Mansions, a song cycle about the Civil War spearheaded by the writer Paul Kennerly and produced by Glyn Johns, Cobb's own effort doesn't adhere to a linear narrative the way its predecessor does. It's more like the way we tell tales now, in dialogue across social media, our individual experiences adding up to a collective portrait of our times.....Southern Family also reflects the eclecticism of the music that's long emanated from Nashville and its environs. Clark's track, enhanced by pedal steel and Mellotron, is high countrypolitan class; East's has the Muscle Shoals swagger he's made his trademark. Lambert invokes the Southern gospel her song title recalls. Brent Cobb gets swampy in the comical "Down Home," while White finds the place where folk music meets The Beatles. Bluegrass and blues and righteous Southern rock all find a place here. More than anything else, Southern Family is an argument for tradition as an organic concept, not an imposed one. Family is in the details, and to capture those details we have to listen to each other and accept the joy, the pain and the differences.

Kentucky.com Entertainment (Rating: Mostly Positive)….Most of the artists rise to the theme of Southern Family without overstating it. Isbell’s God is a Working Man speaks crisply to his prideful roots, a blend of Southern storytelling and reverential country. But the women largely set the pace of the album. Lambert noticeably downshifts on Sweet By and By, adopting a quietly intense and vastly more contained country tone that one seriously hopes will carry over into her future work. Morgane Stapleton gets top billing over one of Cobb’s star clients, husband Chris Stapleton, for a duet update of You Are My Sunshine that swaps the song’s innocence for a darker, swampy electricity. Topping them all is the brilliant Brandy Clark, whose I Cried is elegant, honest and un-coerced country heartbreak……The only misfire goes to the Zac Brown Band, whose Grandma’s Garden overdoses on its own sentimental forwardness the way that much of radio-tooled country does. Frankly, Cobb’s atypically heavy-handed production doesn’t help. Also, Anderson East’s Learning starts with a kind of Randall Brambett-style soulfulness but reaches for Otis Redding-level intensity and winds up sounding forced and falsely imitative.

Wade Bowen with THEN SINGS MY SOUL: SONGS FOR MY MOTHER (Alliance Import) made a debut at No.91 top Albums and #18 Top Country Albums selling 3,275 copies
12 Tracks/ Time: 46:46 Christian & Gospel, Country Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com-  

Americana/country music singer Wade Bowen (brother-in-law of Cross Canadian Ragweed front man, Cody Canada) wanted the album to be a gift for his mother, her friends and family, but with such great response and positive feedback, Bowen says he decided to release the album for his fans.
"I am at such a good spot in my career right now with a lot of freedom, so this felt like the perfect time to release such a meaningful project." The idea of the album came from Bowen's father. "My dad came to me a few years ago and really wanted me to record a gospel album. It sounded like a fun idea but I didn't put much thought into it because my schedule was so crazy busy. This past year he came to me again and asked if I would finally make the album so we could give it to my mother for a combination 70th birthday and Christmas present."
The album contains 12 tracks and feature new twists on standards "Amazing Grace", "Old Rugged Cross", "I'll Fly Away" and other songs. Bowen was a member of the band West 84 with friend Matt Miller, before the band was re-aligned in 2001
Last year on April 20, 2015 Wade Bowen and Randy Rogers released a collaborative album called Hold My Beer, Vol. 1 which made a #4 country debut selling 12,500 copies.

Outside Top 25 Country Albums

William Michael Morgan with his self-titled EP (Warner Music Nashville) made a debut at No.28 Country selling 1,800 copies
The EP is WMN's introduction of William Michael to the world. Riding the growing chart success of his debut single "I Met A Girl", the EP promises to showcase "William's unique vocal skills, and serve as a great launching pad to his debut LP later in 2016" according to the label. There are 6 songs on the EP, including the hit "I Met A Girl".

Critical reception for William Michael Morgan’s EP:
6 Tracks/ Time: 20:25 Amazon UK - UK iTunes - Amazon.com

Saving Country Music (Rating: 1 1/2 of 2 Guns Up (6.5 of 10)…Along with Mo Pitney, William Michel Morgan is one of the best hopes for a young traditionalist that could have an impact on the mainstream side. 

He’s got the voice, the style, and the
temperament........Morgan surprised everyone by releasing a song partially penned by Sam Hunt as his first single that sounded like it was straight out of the mid 80’s traditional country resurgence. “I Met A Girl” was no Mona Lisa, but it showed a lot of promise from the young singer. If Morgan could take a Sam Hunt song and make it sound that good, what else could he do? Unfortunately, the first song on this EP, “Vinyl,” sounds like it could be a dance club single converted to country. ...The second song on the EP “Beer Drinker” is not as bad as the title may make it seem, but just like saying “girl” at the end of every phrase, leaning on the term “beer” as a crutch is something we expect more from washed up Bro-Country acts....The promise of William Michael Morgan remains, and his style is undoubtedly country. But we will have to see how, and what direction the songwriting develops in, and if Morgan will step up to make more songwriting contributions, and see what other type of material is selected to work with his sound before we get the big picture on what William Michael Morgan will be, and what impact he might have on the effort to return some balance to the mainstream country space.

(Rating: Positive) Mississippi native William Michael Morgan is an up and coming country artist who has already made quite the impression on the industry and critics alike with his debut single, “I Met A Girl”, which has reached number 34 on the Country Airplay chart. The song was written and performed by Sam Hunt, but Morgan made it his own and can lay claim to the best version. The single is a sweet, slow building love song, made even better by Morgan’s rich, pure country vocals. Morgan recently released his debut self-titled EP earlier this month. The record is a breath of fresh traditional country air in a scene that is currently clogged up with R&B and hip-hop influences....The EP is incredibly easy on the ears, opening with the smooth, easy rolling “Vinyl”. The song finds Morgan serenading his lady love, telling her that their love is classic, like a vinyl record, and lasting...Overall, William Michael Morgan’s debut EP is a strong one. The EP serves its purpose in making me excited to hear a full album. If you’re looking for some great, traditional sounding country music, this EP is the one for you… The most bang for your dollar.

Various Artists project Wayfaring Strangers: Cosmic American Music made a debut at #48 Country.

Blurb: Country-rock became "the dominant American rock style of the 1970s," as Peter Doggett's comprehensive Are You Ready for the Country put it much later. Wayfaring Strangers: Cosmic American Music picks up and dusts off golden ingots from the dollar-bin detritus of that domination, to reconstruct events as seen from the genre's real Wild West - America's one-off private press label substructure.

Billboard Hot Country Songs (Chart issue week of April 9, 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:

Cole Swindell’s You Should Be Here” (Warner Bros./Warner Music Nashville) led Hot Country Songs for a third week.

 “I Like the Sound of That” (Big Machine) became Rascal Flatts’ 30th Hot Country Songs top 10, when it jumped 12-8 on the survey (which measures airplay, sales and streaming). On Country Airplay, it pushed 4-3 (39.7 million, up 7%). Pop singer-songwriter Meghan Trainor co-wrote the song with Jesse Frasure and Shay Mooney. (Having the band record it was Trainor’s “biggest dream come true,” she told Billboard in 2014.)
Chris Young and Cassadee Pope with “Think of You” (RCA Nashville/Republic Nashville) lifted 12-9, fueled in part by its 9-8 lift on Country Airplay (29.4 million, up 19%). The love song is Young’s 10th Hot Country Songs top 10 and Pope’s fourth.
Old Dominion with “Snapback” (RCA Nashville), its sophomore single, became its second Hot Country Songs top 10 (11-10), following its No.3 hit “Break Up with Him.” “Snapback” advanced 8-7 on Country Airplay (30. 1 million, up 3%).

Hot County Songs

** No.1 (3 weeks) ** “You Should Be Here” Cole Swindell
** Airplay Gainer ** No.20 “Huntin', Fishin' & Lovin' Every Day” Luke Bryan
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.27 “There Goes My Everything” Kane Brown
** Digital & Streaming Gainer ** No.29 “Used To Love You Sober” Kane Brown
Debut No.33 “Noise” Kenny Chesney
Debut No.34 “Wide Open” Kane Brown
Debut No.47 “Peter Pan” Kelsea Ballerini

Billboard Country Airplay (Chart issue week of April 9, 2016)

Country Airplay
*** No.1 (1 week) *** "You Should Be Here” Cole Swindell 43.842 million audience (+2.119 million) / 8,022 radio plays (+594)
** Most Increased Audience/ Hot Shot Debut/ Most Added ** No.21 “Noise” Kenny Chesney 13.095 million audience gain with 102 new radio commitments (102 ADDS)
Debut No.58 “Whisper” Chase Rice
Debut No.60 “Fishin’ With My Dad” Bobby Bones And The Raging Idiots

Cole Swindell with “You Should Be Here” (Warner Bros./Warner Music Nashville) ruled Country Airplay as it climbed 2-1 increasing by 5 percent to 43.8 million audience impressions, according to Nielsen Music, and leads Hot Country Songs for a third week.
“Here” is Swindell’s third Country Airplay leader, following “Hope You Get Lonely Tonight” (2014) and “Ain’t Worth the Whiskey” (2015), both from his self-titled debut album. Penned by the artist with Ashley Gorley as a tribute to Swindell’s late father, William, “Here” is the launch single from his upcoming sophomore album of the same name, due May 6.
Finding out that you have the No.1 song in the country while backstage at the Grand Ole Opry is the coolest feeling in the world,” Swindell told Billboard of his reaction.  “This song is so special to me, and hearing fans’ stories and the way country radio has embraced it is amazing. I’m a lucky guy, and I know my dad is smiling down right now.”
“The brilliant part about this song is it speaks to so many different people,” says WBWL Boston PD Lance Houston. “Cole wrote it about a specific [person], but listeners relate it to their own circumstances. Plus, he wrote it in the parking lot at Gillette Stadium, just outside of Boston, so that made it significant here.”
Warner Music Nashville vp promotion Kristen Williams believed the song was a hit after one listen. “I actually heard it as a demo on Cole’s phone,” she said. “I could tell immediately we had something, which was validated when we played it for programmers at the Country Radio Seminar and there were tears in the room.”

Dierks Bentley scored his milestone 20th Country Airplay top 10, as “Somewhere on a Beach” (Capitol Nashville) swelled 13-10 (25.7 million, up 10%). The song previewed his LP Black.
Kenny Chesney with new single “Noise” (Blue Chair/Columbia Nashville) bounded onto the chart at No.21 with 13 million in first-week audience. The track marked Chesney’s record-extending ninth top 25 debut; Garth Brooks ranks second with five.
Press Release Nashville, Tenn (March 28, 2016) - Having built a career on knowing the moment and trusting his gut, Kenny Chesney derailed a pretty involved single set-up when he suddenly found himself midway through writing a song about the impact of sonic overload on our society. Begun on his way to a marketing meeting to review set up plans for his new music, something about “Noise” struck Chesney as too immediate to wait.
 “Sometimes as a writer, you sense the urgency of what you’re saying,” he says. “I knew how many hours of work had gone into setting up the album and the single. I also felt in my gut ‘Noise’ was a song people were hungry to hear someone say.”
 Chesney’s lucky his gut didn’t knock him over. Hitting Billboard’s Country Singles Chart at No. 21 bullet and MediaBase’s at No. 28 bullet, “Noise” brought in a whopping 146 adds in its first week; even more than the 111 stations “American Kids” had and the 127 stations Hemingway Whiskey’s “Live A Little” scored.
 “I’ve always tried to make music that says something I think the fans want to hear,” Chesney said. “When you have a great song that speaks to the heart of how people are living, you’ve got something. I try to not repeat myself, or what other folks are doing.
 “We had a really smart, really interesting single musically and topically,” continued the man The Los Angeles Times proclaimed “The People’s Superstar.” “But when ‘Noise’ rolled out and Shane and I were almost done before we got off the phone, I knew it was special, and real, and everything people are contending with. This response tells me my instinct was right.”

Can't Stand The Noise?
You can listen Kenny Chesney's "Noise" (Blue Chair Records/Columbia Nashville) below
Purchase from Amazon UK | UK iTunes | Amazon.com | Spotify
Describing “Noise” as “socially relevant,” Kenny talked about how most of us are overstimulated and bombarded by information, remarking on the current U.S. Presidential race in particular. Moments after the video chat ended, “Noise” arrived in the inboxes of radio stations everywhere. Watch the Facebook video here


Billboard Country Digital Singles Chart (Chart issue week of April 9, 2016)

‘HUMBLE’ GUY: Tim McGraw with “Humble and Kind” (McGraw/Big Machine/Big Machine Label Group) ascended 3-1 on Country Digital Songs (35,000 sold, up 6% on previous week 32,890 sales). It’s his third No.1 on the survey, which launched in 2010. On the all genre Digital Songs chart it moved 21-18 and has sold 253,000 copies in 10 weeks.

Maren Morris with "My Church" (Columbia Nashville/Sony Music Nashville) held at No.2 (#20-#25 Digital Songs; 31,000 sales; 11-week total 317,000).
Last week’s #1 Blake Shelton with “Came Here to Forget” (Warner Bros./ WMN) fell 1-3 (#15-#26 Digital Songs; 3-week total 136,000)
Dierks Bentley with “Somewhere On A Beach" held at #4 (28,000 sales; 28-30 Digital Songs; 10-week total 216,000)

Cole Swindell with “You Should Be Here” held at #5 (27,000 sales; #29-#33 Digital Songs; 15-week total 430,000)
Thomas Rhett with his new single “T-Shirt” climbed 9-6 (24,000 sales; #39-#35 Digital Songs; 10-week total 144,000) whilst his big hit "Die A Happy Man" fell 6-10 (24,231 sales; down 8%; 33-40 Digital Songs; 27-week total 1,281,000).
Chris Young duet with Cassadee Pope was up 8-7 (22,000 sales; #37 Digital Songs; 10-week total 188,000).
Brett Eldredge with “Drunk On Your Love” fell 7-9 (22,000 sales; 34-39 Digital Songs; 16-week total 311,000) 

Country Aircheck MEDIABASE Chart

28 March 2016














Congrats to Brett Eldredge, Kevin Herring, Kristen Williams, Katie Bright and the WMN promotion staff on landing week's No.1 with "Drunk On Your Love."
The song logged 8,601 radio spins (+827) and 58.624 million audience impressions (+4.495) with 27403 Total Points from 159 tracking stations for the tracking week March 20 to March 26, 2016 and published chart March 28th 2016.
The song is the second chart-topper from his current album Illinois and the fifth consecutive No.1 of his career. It follows "Lose My Mind" in October 2015, "Mean to Me" in March 2015, "Beat Of The Music" from June 2014 and "Dont Ya" August 2013

Kudos to Steve Hodges and the Columbia team on ringing the bell with 138 adds for Kenny Chesney's "Noise," topping the week’s "Most Added" board. It made a debut at No.28. It is the second-highest one-week add total in Country Aircheck history behind the 145 for Carrie Underwood's "Smoke Break" set last August. Chesney also surpassed Blake Shelton's second highest 131 one-week adds with "Came Here To Forget"

Randy Houser’s “Song Number 7” Rocks Country Radio Today, March 28
Second single from new album, Fired Up, reels in Houser's highest first week add total to date with 60 first week reporters as he prepares to hit the road for the 2016 Somewhere On A Beach Tour with Dierks Bentley
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (March 28, 2016) – Still fresh from landing his fourth No. 1 with “We Went” and releasing his new album, Fired Up, Randy Houser shows no signs of slowing down as his new single, “Song Number 7,” arrived at country radio today, March 28. The catchy earworm is the second most-added song at country radio with 60 first week reporters, marking Houser's highest first week add total to date. Fans and critics have also latched on to the new single, with the New York Times noting that “Song Number 7” is “likely to be one of the best country songs of this year” and Taste of Country calling it “the finest single representative of
[Houser’s] Fired Up album. It’s a big country power ballad that leans progressive, but stops short of crossing a bridge that leaves traditional country behind. Above all else, ‘Song Number 7’ is a vocal showcase.”
 Download “Song Number 7” at http://geni.us/firedup  and watch the lyric video here.

Written by Justin Wilson, Ben Hayslip and Chris Janson, “Song Number 7” is rooted in “a familiar country conceit: music about the power of music” (New York Times), which Houser has also nodded to in his own writing such as the deep cut “Power Of A Song” from his previous record, How Country Feels.

What others are saying;
He'll slyly incorporate some trends into his productions -- here, it's a bright, beat-heavy electronic tapestry reminiscent of Luke Bryan -- but it's just enough to freshen a sound that remains rooted in muscular, masculine modern country - Allmusic
There’s a song called “Song Number 7” that works just like Luke Bryan’s “Play It Again,” only just not nearly as effective. - Saving Country Music.com

Country Perspective.com - Houser is currently performing select headlining dates and will join Dierks Bentley for the 2016 Somewhere On A Beach Tour starting in May. Fired Up proved to be an album overloaded with stupid pop country songs jutting up into 17 tracks! As a mid-tier country bro, Houser’s producers clearly felt the need to give this album enough life to sustain Houser through tours and radio singles for a couple of years. We aren’t going
to bother reviewing the 17-track album as the ready for radio playlist has nothing to offer as an album. However, as Houser releases singles, we’ll take a look at each of those. And the second single Houser is releasing from Fired Up is “Song Number 7.”

Is Nashville even trying anymore? We’re at a party with loud music and there’s one girl in particular who catches the eyes of the boys. As the party’s playlist continues, the girl gradually becomes more interested in the narrator. Once the seventh song comes through the speakers, she jumps and says “oh my god, this is my song! We’ve been listening to the radio all night long.” Wait, no. This isn’t “Play It Again.” But it might as well be. Randy Houser’s “Song Number 7” is a remake of Luke Bryan’s “Play It Again,” and writers Chris Janson, Ben Hayslip, and Justin Wilson somehow make the already terrible subject worse. Even the mid-tempo
production with drum machines and generic guitars sound similar to “Play It Again,” primarily in the chorus. There was little attempt to separate this clone from the original.
Randy Houser doesn’t sing with any kind of charisma, and the chorus features some awkward, jarring vocal harmonies that strangely pop way after a natural echo would. The production of this song is crap with random intensified drums. I almost didn’t want to review “Song Number 7”, but it’s such a near copycat of Luke Bryan’s hit that it deserves to be put on this platform.
Absolutely no effort went in to making this song even a little original. Instead of playing to Randy Houser’s strength as a vocalist and letting his traditional country-style expand, his label has decided to prop him firmly in the shadows of the A-List bros by having him record songs that continue mainstream country down a path of cutting the same, boring song. “Song Number 7” is terrible due to the fact that it has no originality whatsoever. Grade: 2/10

For a detailed report check out Country Aircheck Weekly Issue 492 - March 28, 2016 [PDF File]
For the very latest up to the minute Mediabase Chart (Past 7 Days) go here - www.mediabase.com

Billboard Boxscores (Selective Country concerts)

Rank #144
Artist: Jennifer Nettles, Brandy Clark, Lindsay Ell, Tara Thompson
Event Venue City/State: Ford Center Evansville, Ind
Dates: March 19, 2016 Gross Sales: $35,503 Attend: 875 / 2,557
Capacity Shows: 1/0 Prices: $66, $22

Promoters: VenuWorks

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