Country Billboard Chart News February 20, 2017
Feb. 23, 2017 - Dierks Bentley with his eighth studio album BLACK (Capitol Records Nashville) has earned GOLD certification by the RIAA (500,000 units). Validating Bentley's ability “to combine commercial and critical success” (Nashville Scene), the new certification makes it the only ACM “Album of the Year” nominated project to reach this mark.
In Brief: Billboard Country Charts (Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
Country Album Chart ** No.1 (2 weeks) Sing It Now: Songs of Faith & Hope Reba McEntire
Hot Country Songs ** No.1 (2 weeks) ** “Body Like A Back Road” Sam Hunt
Country Airplay ** No.1 (1 week) ** "Better Man” Little Big Town
Country Digital Songs ** No.1 (3 weeks) ** “Body Like A Back Road” Sam Hunt
Billboard Top 200 / Country Album Chart News (Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
The Billboard 200 chart measures multi-metric album consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA).
The Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack debuted at No.1 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart (BB200), earning 123,000 equivalent album units in the week ending Feb. 16, according to Nielsen Music. Of that sum, 71,652 copies were in traditional album sales. The set was released through Universal Studios/Republic Records on Feb. 10.
Fifty Shades Darker is the sequel to Fifty Shades of Grey, which saw its companion soundtrack debut and peak at No. 2 on the chart dated Feb. 28, 2015.
Some 26 million people watched THE GRAMMY AWARDS show, up from both 2015 and 2016 and a week on it fuelled activity in the music marketplace. The sum of all the songs performed generated a 140% increase in song sales and a 30% increase in on-demand streams, with the median title increasing 354% in song sales and 46% in on-demand streams.
Other findings included:
The songs performed on the GRAMMY AWARDS added 319K in song sales and nearly 21 million on-demand streams for the songs performed
Bruno Mars’ “That’s What I Like” was the second-leading song with an increase of 63,800 in unit sales (308% increase)
At No.2 on the new Billboard 200, Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic rose 7-2 with 66,000 units and a 108% gain, following his two performances on the Grammy Awards (Feb. 12). The album sold 36,213 copies during the tracking frame -- up 137%. On the Grammys, Mars sang 24K Magic’s current single “That’s What I Like,” and contributed to a segment celebrating Prince, by covering his “Let’s Go Crazy.”
Chance The Rapper's streaming-only "Coloring Book" led all album on-demand streams with a unit increase of 15,548,000; Adele’s "25" was a distant second with a unit increase of 5,165,000 on-demand streams. Adele’s 25, which won the Grammy Award for album of the year, zoomed from No. 21 to No. 6 with 47,000 units (up 137%). The former No.1 shifted another 30,443 copies in the latest tracking week, a gain of 238%. Adele also opened the Grammy Awards with a performance of the album’s lead single, “Hello.”
Beyoncé’s LEMONADE flew from No.33 to No.9, following the diva’s elaborate performance of the set’s “Love Drought” and “Sandcastles”. Lemonade earned another 38,000 units (a gain of 190%) shifting 29,371 in pure sales.
Keith Urban and Carrie Underwood's “The Fighter” saw a 574% increase in song sales.
Sturgill Simpson's Grammy winning Country album A SAILOR’S GUIDE TO EARTH saw a 163% increase in on-demand streams.
Billboard Top Country Albums (Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
Reba McEntire Spends Second Consecutive Week Atop Christian/Gospel And Country Charts
Reba McEntire with her first faith-based set, Sing It Now: Songs of Faith & Hope (Nash Icon/Big Machine Label Group), paced both Top Country Albums and Top Christian Albums for a second consecutive week, with 26,000 equivalent album units (down 52%).
Of that sum 25,340 copies were pure sales (down 53%). On the Billboard 200 Sing It Now retreated 4-16.
The double-disc project debuted at #1 last week after it earned 54,426 equivalent albums (52,039 were traditional pure sales) in the week ending Feb. 9. McEntire resumed her Vegas residency with Brooks & Dunn this week.
Brett Young with self-titled debut full-length (BMLG) opened at No.2 (#18 BB200). Young’s LP, produced by Dann Huff, began with 25,000 equivalent album units earned in its launch week (ending Feb. 16). Pure sales were 17,827 and it logged the 13th best-selling album in America this chart frame.
Young co-wrote 11 of the set’s 12 songs, including latest single “In Case You Didn’t Know,” which pushed to a new high (17-14) on Hot Country Songs. The move was sparked in part by the song’s 28% gain to 20,000 sold, as it climbed 6-5 on Country Digital Song Sales, and its 25% boost to 7.1 million impressions; on Country Airplay, were it advanced 31-29.
Young’s first single from the LP, “Sleep Without You,” peaked at No.2 on Country Airplay and No.3 on Hot Country Songs back on December 2016.
Critical reception for Brett Young’s self-titled set Brett Young:
Sounds Like Nashville Laura Hostelley (Rating: Positive) Young is a featured co-writer on 11 out of the 12 tracks on the album, which was produced by Dann Huff and recorded in Nashville. Six of the songs were previously released on his EP, with the additions rounding out the project. The production through the record is minimal, leaving room for the rising country star to use his soft but graveled voice to portray emotion and tell the tales of love....Olivia Mae” reveals a love story throughout the lyrics. The song describes an admirable pursuit of a girl that turns into being the romance for a lifetime. Though not likely to be a single, “Olivia Mae” stands out on the record for its traditional formula and endearing subject matter.
Country Standard Time (Rating: Mixed) Make no mistake that Young's vocal delivery is satisfying, a bit gritty. The piano driven "Mercy" works well in showcasing Young's sensitive, emotive side.
Young slows it down a bit on "You Ain't Here to Kiss Me" in a more mournful delivery with the liquor not helping him in a love gone wrong song. More material like that would have been welcome because, otherwise, Young is one of a long line of country singers with a soulful sound that goes down real easy. he problem though is exactly that - Young is another cog in the machine. The songs are interchangeable pretty much, almost all focusing on love lost and found....Young probably has done what one is supposed to do these days with a debut - attract some airplay, playing it ultra safe by not taking chances and hopefully build a career. Not projections on the future, but for Young, anyway, two out of three ain't bad.
Roughstock (Rating: Positive) Mid-tempo songs are where Brett and his blue-eyed soul vocals shine. He's able to end lyrics and melody. "Olivia Mae" and "Back On The Wagon" showcase this, blending the classic sounds of soul and pop with Dann Huff's sturdy country production. "...Each of the 12 songs here showcase Brett Young as a potential superstar and perhaps no song does that better than the Adele-like "Mercy," an emotive relationship ballad. It's a hell of an exclamation point on a well-crafted debut album project.
Keith Urban with RIPCORD (Hit Red/Capitol Nashville) climbed 4-3 (39-23 BB200) selling 11,584 copies (41-week total 461,800)
Garth Brooks with THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION rose 5-4 (41-24 BB200) with 20,530 copies sold (10-week total 466,200).
Brantley Gilbert with THE DEVIL DONT SLEEP (Valory) fell 2-5 (12-25 BB200) with 14,116 copies sold (3-week total 99,500).
Maren Morris with HERO (Columbia Nashville) climbed 11-6 (82-26 BB200) with 10,469 copies sold (37-week total 184,500).
Chris Stapleton with TRAVELLER (MERCURY/ UMGN) fell 3-7 (29-44 BB200) selling 8,449 copies (94 week total 1,734,700).
Sturgill Simpson with the 2017 Grammy winning Country album A SAILOR’S GUIDE TO EARTH (Atlantic) rocketed up 34-8 (BB200 #44 Re-Entry) thanks to sales of 11,151 copies (41-week total 184,350).
Jason Aldean with THEY DON'T KNOW (Macon/Broken Bow) lifted 10-9 (80-55 BB200) selling 6,845 copies (23-week total 336,700)
Thomas Rhett with TANGLED UP (Valory) rounded out the top 10 falling 6-10 (54-33 BB200) selling 3,060 copies (73-week total 541,660).
No other albums charted on the third week of the new consumption-based methodology top 50 Top Country Album chart.
On the Country Album Sales Chart Top 50 there was one new entry at #23 as Old Crow Medicine Show with BEST OF OLD CROW MEDICINE SHOW made a debut based on 2,240 copies sold.
Two artists with Grammy exposure awarding winning Lori McKenna for “Humble Of Kind”, saw her album THE BIRD & THE RIFLE re-enter at #31 (3 chart weeks) and Country Album nominee Brandy Clark with BIG DAY IN A SMALL TOWN returned at #48 (her 8th week on the tally)
2,438,000 (Physical sales 1,633,000 (down -11.86%) + Digital sales 805,000 (down -23.6%)) which is 16.0% down at the same point in 2016 (2,904,000 sales)
Year-To-Date Digital Tracks
9,549,000 down 22.8% at the same point in 2016 (12,375,000)
Billboard Hot Country Songs (Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
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:
Sam Hunt remained at No.1, with “Body Like a Back Road” (MCA Nashville) for a second week. The song also held at #1 on both Country Streaming Songs and the Country Digital Song Sales chart.
Keith Urban with “The Fighter,” featuring Carrie Underwood (Hit Red/Capitol Nashville), soared 46-5 on Hot Country Songs following their performance of the pop-flavoured track on the 59th Annual Grammy Awards, broadcast on CBS on Feb. 12. The song — from Urban’s latest album, Ripcord — vaulted 25-2 on Country Digital Song Sales, surging 370% to 45,000 downloads sold. It also jumped by 371% to 1.7 million U.S. streams. On Country Airplay, it reached the top 40 (44-33; 5.9 million, up 145%).
“The Fighter” is Urban’s 38th Hot Country Songs top 10, all achieved consecutively (counting songs in lead roles officially promoted to country radio and excluding holiday fare), extending his unmatched active streak that started with the No.4-peaking “Your Everything” in 2000.
|Carrie Underwood (L) & Keith Urban (R) perform "The Fighter" at the 2017 Grammy Awards|
Underwood earns her 26th Hot Country Songs top 10, also all linked consecutively (and encompassing all of her promoted country music, excluding holiday material).
Her run began with her first country single, “Jesus, Take the Wheel,” her first of 15 Country Airplay No.1s and 14 Hot Country songs leaders, in 2006. Underwood extended the longest streak of top 10 promoted singles from a career’s start on both charts; Tracy Lawrence ranks second with 19 out-of-the-gate top 10s in 1992-97.
Brad Paisley banked his 32nd Hot Country Songs top 10 as “Today” (Arista Nashville) bumped 11-10. On Country Airplay, the ballad rose 6-4 (36.5 million, up 8%).
Hot County Songs
** No.1 (2 weeks) ** “Body Like A Back Road” Sam Hunt
** Digital & Streaming Gainer ** No.5 “The Fighter” Keith Urban feat. Carrie Underwood
** Airplay Gainer ** No.7 “Think A Little Less” Michael Ray
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.37 “Once” Maren Morris
Debut No.41 “More Girls Like You” Kip Moore
Debut No.46 “Every Time I Hear That Song” Blake Shelton
Billboard Country Airplay (Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
Little Big Town scored their second No.1 on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart (dated March 4), as “Better Man” (Capitol Nashville; released October 20, 2016), written by Taylor Swift, pushed 2-1 in its 18th week. It increased 8% to 40.8 million audience impressions in the tracking week ending Feb. 19, according to Nielsen Music.
“So blown away by the reaction to this song,” LBT’s Karen Fairchild told Billboard. “We’re popping the champagne right now. Thanks to our fans and country radio for all the love and support. And thanks to Taylor Swift for sending us this beautiful song.”
“Better Man” is the lead single from Little Big Town’s eighth studio album, The Breaker, produced by Jay Joyce and due Friday (Feb. 24).
Little Big Town previously led Country Airplay with “Pontoon” for two weeks beginning Sept. 15, 2012. Notably, “Girl Crush,” which ruled the Hot Country Songs chart (the list blends airplay, sales and streaming) for 13-weeks in
2015, peaked at No.3 on Country Airplay. “Better Man” topped Hot Country Songs for two frames (Feb. 11 and 18).
“Better Man” is the first Country Airplay No. 1 by a single author since Tim McGraw’s “Humble and Kind,” penned by Americana/country singer-songwriter Lori McKenna, topped the list dated June 25, 2016. That ballad became the first No.1 penned by one person in more than four years since Swift’s self-authored “Ours” (March 31, 2012).
*** No. 1 (1 week) *** "Better Man” Little Big Town 40.760 million audience (+3.113 million) / 7,770 radio plays (+523)
** Most Increased Audience ** No.3 “Think A Little Less” Michael Ray 4.667 million audience gain
** Most Added ** No.33 “The Fighter” Keith Urban feat. Carrie Underwood (39 ADDS)
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.48 “Every Time I Hear That Song” Blake Shelton
Debut No.56 “More Girls Like You” Kip Moore
Debut No.59 “Close” Ryan Kinder
Debut No.60 “What Ifs” Kane Brown feat. Lauren Alaina
Billboard Country Digital Singles Chart
(Chart issue week of March 4, 2017)
Sam Hunt with “Body Like a Back Road” (MCA Nashville) held at No.1 on the Billboard Country Song Sales Chart .
On the Digital Song Sales chart, it fell 4-6 five places behind the No.1 “Shape Of You” by Ed Sheeran.
Keith Urban with “The Fighter,” featuring Carrie Underwood (Hit Red/Capitol Nashville), leapt 25-2 shifting 45,000 downloads (up 370%) in their 7th frame (#9 Re-entry Digital Songs).
Little Big Town with “Better Man” slipped 2-3 (#30-31 Digital Songs) whilst their award winning smash hit “Girl Crush” rose 23-10 in its 87th chart frame.
Maren Morris with “My Church” fuelled by her Grammy award and performance made a re-entry at #4. (#33 Re-entry Digital Songs) as her new single “Once” arrived at #13.
Brett Young with “In Case You Didn’t Know” rose 6-5 (#42 Digital Songs) in his 20th frame.
Jon Pardi with “Dirt On My Boots” fell 4-6 (#41-44 Digital Songs) in his 21st week.
Keith Urban with “Blue Ain’t Your Color” fell 5-7 (#42-48 Digital Songs) in his 31st week.
Kelsea Ballerini with “Peter Pan” was a re-entry at #8 after performing the song at The Grammys. She sold another 15,000 downloads (up 292%).
Chris Young feat Vince Gill with “Sober Saturday Night” re-entered at #9.
Outside the Top 10
Zac Brown Band with “My Old Man” slipped back #2-12 in their second week.
Kip Moore with “More Girls Like You” made a debut at #14
Country Aircheck MEDIABASE Chart
20 February 2017
Congrats to Little Big Town, Royce Risser, Bobby Young, David Friedman and the Capitol promotion team on scoring this week’s No.1 with “Better Man.” The song is the first single from the band’s album The Breaker, out Friday 24 Feb.
The song logged 8,381 radio spins (+550) and 57.269 million audience impressions with 25507 Total Points from 158 tracking stations for the tracking week February 12 to February 18, 2017 and published chart February 20th 2017.
And kudos to Katie Bright and the WMN staff on notching 48 adds for Blake Shelton’s “Every Time I Hear That Song”. The song topped the "Most Added" board this chart week.
For a detailed report check out Country Aircheck Weekly Issue 538 - Feb 21, 2017 [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 Artist: #4
Event Venue City/State: Eric Church, Sprint Center, Kansas City, Mo.
Dates: Jan. 31, 2017 Gross Sales: $1,044,361 Attend: 17,076/ 17,076
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/1 ** SOLD OUT ** Prices: $89, $27
Promoters: Messina Touring Group/AEG Live
Rank Artist: #5
Event Venue City/State: Eric Church, TD Garden, Boston, Mass.
Dates: Jan. 28, 2017 Gross Sales: $1,018,761 Attend: 16,697/ 16,697
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/1 ** SOLD OUT ** Prices: $89.50, $28.50
Promoters: Messina Touring Group/AEG Live
Rank Artist: #25
Event Venue City/State: Alan Jackson, Pensacola Bay Center, Pensacola, Fla.
Dates: Jan. 27, 2017 Gross Sales: $363,608 Attend: 6,031/ 6,031
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/1 ** SOLD OUT ** Prices: $99.50, $39.50
Promoters: AEG Live
Rank Artist: #34
Event Venue City/State: Brantley Gilbert, Tucker Beathard, Luke Combs, Brian Davis, Glens Falls Civic Center
Dates: Feb. 16, 2017 Gross Sales: $180,376 Attend: 4,638 / 4,638
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/1 ** SOLD OUT ** Prices: $52, $34.75
Promoters: Frank Productions/NS2/CMoore Live
Rank Artist: #35
Event Venue City/State: Kenny Rogers, Linda Davis Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Au-Rene Theater, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Dates: Jan. 24, 2017 Gross Sales: $178,382 Attend: 2,400/ 2,526
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/0 Prices: $125, $45 Promoters: Broward Center
Rank Artist: #36
Event Venue City/State: Lee Brice & Justin Moore, William Michael Morgan Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, N.C.
Dates: Feb. 4, 2017 Gross Sales: $177,014 Attend: 4,514/ 5,809
Shows/ Sellouts: 1/0 Prices: $179, $26 Promoters: Police Productions/Spectra Presents