The Nov. 6 Country Music Association Awards shake up the Hot Country Songs and Top Country Albums charts
The Nov. 6 Country Music Association (CMA) Awards, broadcast on ABC-TV, invigorate Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, where Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert bring the first male/female duet to the summit in more than two years. Meanwhile, Taylor Swift and Eric Church each surge into the top 10 and Luke Bryan matches his career-high debut.
A performance on the CMA show helps lift Urban and Lambert's "We Were Us" 6-1. It jumps 9-2 on Country Digital Songs (74,000 downloads sold, up 181%, according to Nielsen SoundScan), while continuing its climb on Country Airplay (5-4; 39.6 million audience impressions, up 2%, according to Nielsen BDS).
"Us" is the first male/female duet to reach No. 1 since the CMA show's co-hosts Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood's "Remind Me" crowned the Sept. 10, 2011, chart. Here, in fact, is a look at the last 10 No. 1 duets, stretching back 25 years, between a solo male and female (including only songs billed as duets, not as by lead and featured acts):
2013, "We Were Us," Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert
2011, "Remind Me," Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood
2011, "Don't You Wanna Stay," Jason Aldean with Kelly Clarkson
2002, "Bring On the Rain," Jo Dee Messina with Tim McGraw
1998, "What If I Said," Anita Cochran (Duet with Steve Wariner)
1997, "It's Your Love," Tim McGraw with Faith Hill
1993, "The Heart Won't Lie," Reba McEntire & Vince Gill
1991, "Rockin' Years," Dolly Parton with Ricky Van Shelton
1988, "We Believe in Happy Endings," Earl Thomas Conley with Emmylou Harris
1988, "It's Such a Small World," Rodney Crowell and Rosanne Cash
'RED' NOVEMBER: Bounding 14-4 on Hot Country Songs, Taylor Swift's "Red" benefits from a CMA Awards acoustic performance featuring Vince Gill, Alison Krauss and Sam Bush, which was released the following day (Nov. 7) to digital retailers and radio programmers. The collaborative version accounts for 60% of the title's 72,000 downloads sold in the tracking week, helping it snare the chart's Digital Gainer nod (up 638%).
"Red" roars 38-3 on Country Digital Songs, marking its best rank in more than a year on the list, where it debuted at No. 1 in October 2012. It concurrently opened at No. 2 on Hot Country Songs last year; this week marks its first week in the top 10 since it ranked at No. 9 the week of Oct. 27, 2012.
CHURCH GOING: Eric Church performed "The Outsiders" on the CMA telecast, which assists the track's 26-8 vault with Streaming Gainer honors (377,000 total streams, according to BDS). It returns to No. 1 on Country Digital Songs (79,000, up 146%), where it opened at No. 1 (81,000) two weeks ago.
MUS-SEE TV: On Top Country Albums, the CMA show is surely the main catalyst for the 30-5 blast of Kacey Musgraves' "Same Trailer Different Park" with Greatest Gainer stripes (15,000 sold, up 567%). She took home the top new artist trophy and performed the set's "Follow Your Arrow," which opens on Hot Country Songs at No. 28.
Other noteworthy album gains include Little Big Town's "Tornado," which sells 7,000 (up 240%) and jumps 35-14; the quartet performed and won the top vocal group award at the show. Performer and double award-winner Blake Shelton's "Based on a True Story…" claimed the album of the year prize and charges 8-4 (20,000, up 148%). He was named top male vocalist.
BIG 'BEER': Luke Bryan matches his best opening-week rank on Hot Country Songs, No. 20, with "Drink a Beer," which he performed on the CMA show. He also entered at No. 20 with "Buzzkill" in March.
Bryan departs the Hot Country Songs summit (1-3) after 12 weeks on top with "That's My Kind of Night." The song racked the longest reign for a solo male since Buck Owens spent 16 weeks at No. 1 with "Love's Gonna Live Here" in 1963-64.
WEDDED BLISS: Country/pop singer and reality show starlet Jessie James Decker opens at No. 39 on Hot Country Songs with "I Do," which she performed on the Nov. 3 season finale of the E! Network's "Eric & Jessie: Game On." The debut is driven mostly by download sales, entering Country Digital Songs at No. 30 (16,000 sold).
Decker's husband and "Game On" co-star is Denver Broncos wide receiver Eric Decker, whom she married on the season-wrapping episode. Previously known as Jessie James, she scored a pop hit with "Wanted," which reached No. 23 on the Pop Songs radio airplay chart (and No. 40 on the Billboard Hot 100) in 2009. She's reached Country Airplay with "Boys in the Summer" (No. 58, 2010) and "Military Man" (No. 49, 2012).
'RADIO' ACTIVE: Darius Rucker and Taylor Swift improve their top 10 counts on the Country Airplay tally, where "Radio" and "Red" become their eighth and 18th titles, respectively, to reach the upper region.
Up 12-9, Rucker's track follows his two-week No. 1 "Wagon Wheel." Swift's song (11-10) is her first unaccompanied top 10 since "Begin Again" peaked at No. 3 in March. She spent two weeks atop the chart in June as a featured artist on Tim McGraw's "Highway Don't Care." Swift has missed the top 10 with only one single promoted to country radio (excluding holiday fare): "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" came close, reaching No. 13 in September 2012.
Blake Shelton, meanwhile, posts a second week at No. 1 on Country Airplay with "Mine Would Be You," marking the 12th of his 15 leaders to reign for more than a week. He scored his longest command when his debut single "Austin" ruled for five weeks in 2001.