Joey & Rory Fans Pay Tribute to Ailing Singer With Chart Campaign
Joey & Rory's moving ballad "When I'm Gone" re-enters Billboard's Country Digital Songs chart (dated Nov. 28) at No. 7 with 27,000 downloads sold in the week ending Nov. 12, according to Nielsen Music. It logs a 1,303 percent gain (from 2,000). On Hot Country Songs, "Gone" opens at No. 21, marking the pair's strongest showing on the survey, besting its No. 30 peak with 2009's "Cheater Cheater."
It's bittersweet news for the singer-songwriters. In 2014, Joey Feek was diagnosed with cervical cancer, which has since become terminal. Husband and duet partner Rory Feek announced recently that the couple decided to end treatment and that she has entered hospice care.
The song was recorded for the twosome's 2012 album His and Hers, which peaked at No. 24 on Top Country Albums and has sold 15,000 to date. Penned by Sandy Lawrence, a friend of the duo, the track was written when Lawrence was losing her mother.
Fans of Joey & Rory have started a campaign to send the song to a No. 1 chart ranking, with a social media push that has been growing steadily. Artists including Terri Clark have joined the effort, encouraging supporters to purchase the song.
NO. 1 STAPLE: Chris Stapleton's "Tennessee Whiskey" tops Hot Country Songs for a second week. The cut re-entered the chart (dated Nov. 21) at the summit after his huge night at the Country Music Association Awards on Nov. 4, when he won male vocalist, new artist and album of the year honors, the latter for Traveller, which also notches a second week at No. 1 on Top Country Albums (97,000 in traditional sales, down 37 percent) and the all-genre Billboard 200 (124,000 equivalent album units, down 30 percent). The Billboard 200 ranks the most popular albums of the week based on multimetric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track-equivalent albums and streaming-equivalent albums.
Traveller is one of only two albums to spend more than one week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in 2015 — and both are country sets: Luke Bryan's Kill the Lights led the list for the weeks of Aug. 29 and Sept. 5.
MORE 'COUNTRY MUSIC': Eric Church's Mr. Misunderstood steps 3-2 in its second week on Top Country Albums (58,000, down 18 percent), and Tim McGraw's Damn Country Music opens at No. 3 (39,000), marking his 19th top 10. Also in the top five is Old Dominion's debut full-length, Meat and Candy, which starts at No. 5 (21,000).
'OVER'-ACHIEVER: Chris Young's "I'm Comin' Over," co-written by Young, Corey Crowder and Josh Hoge, rises 3-1 in its 25th week on Country Airplay, up 5 percent to 49.1 million audience impressions. On Hot Country Songs, the track pushes 5-4.
"Over," the lead single and title cut from Young's fifth studio album, released Nov. 13, is his sixth Country Airplay No. 1 and first since "You" (Feb. 11, 2012), which became his fifth consecutive leader (dating to 2009), following "Tomorrow," "Voices," "The Man I Want to Be" and "Gettin' You Home."
"I made ["Over"] with Corey and Josh, and we became a core," Young told Billboard upon learning of his new No. 1. "I think they're losing their minds right now, and I can't wait to celebrate with them." The album, produced by Young and Crowder, grants Young his first producer credit.
A TRUE ICON: Also on Country Airplay, Hank Williams Jr.'s "Are You Ready for the Country" (featuring Eric Church), originally recorded by the late Waylon Jennings (No. 7 on Hot Country Songs, 1977), bows at No. 58. "Ready" is Williams' first entry for the Nash Icon label and marks his sixth decade of denting the Billboard country charts. He first charted with 1964's "Long Gone Lonesome Blues."