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Brett Young's 'Mercy' Extends Country Airplay Reign, Old Dominion Turns 'Key' Into a Top 10 Hit
Brett Young's "Mercy" holds at the summit of Billboard's Country Airplay chart (dated Aug. 18), increasing by 4 percent to 40.1 million audience impressions in the week ending Aug. 12, according to Nielsen Music.
Co-penned by Young and Sean McConnell, "Mercy" is Young's third total and consecutive Country Airplay leader, all of which have now ruled for multiple weeks. "Like I Loved You" led the survey dated Jan. 3 for its first of three weeks on top, after "In Case You Didn't Know" reigned for two frames in June 2017. Young's debut song, "Sleep Without You," peaked at No. 2 in December 2016; all four songs are from Young's eponymous 2017 debut LP.
"'Mercy' is the last song we recorded for the album and I always knew it was something special," Young tells Billboard. "Sean and I wrote it from such a raw place and I hoped it would connect with fans in the way that it has. I'm proud of all of my songs, but this one digs deep and I think that it's the perfect last single before album two."
Young's next single, "Here Tonight," is due in September as the first taste of his next LP, expected later this year.
Notably, 14 of the 22 Country Airplay No. 1s in 2018 before "Mercy" spent a single week in the top spot. The last artist before the 37-year-old Young -- who hails from Anaheim, California -- that logged three or more consecutive multi-week Country Airplay No. 1s? Blake Shelton, who posted five straight such leaders (counting singles promoted to country radio, not including holiday fare): "Honey Bee" (four weeks, 2011), "God Gave Me You" (three, 2011), "Drink On It" (two, 2012), "Over" (two, 2012) and "Sure Be Cool If You Did" (two, 2013).
On Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, which blends airplay, streaming and sales data, "Mercy" climbs 4-2 for a new high. Bebe Rexha and Florida Georgia Line's "Meant to Be" leads the list for a record-extending 37th week. During the duet's reign, five songs before "Mercy" reached No. 2 peaks: Thomas Rhett's "Marry Me," Jason Aldean's "You Make It Easy," Kane Brown's "Heaven," Dan + Shay's "Tequila" and Kenny Chesney's "Get Along."
'KEY' TO SUCCESS Old Dominion banks its sixth Country Airplay top 10, a run that includes four No. 1s, as "Hotel Key" bumps 11-10, up 7 percent to 27.4 million in audience. On Hot Country Songs, it hits a new peak, climbing 13-11.
"Key" -- written by Old Dominion's Trevor Rosen and Matthew Ramsey with Josh Osborne -- is the third single from the group's second LP, Happy Endings, which debuted at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart dated Sept. 16, 2017. Lead single "No Such Thing as a Broken Heart" topped the Country Airplay chart dated Sept. 9, 2017, and follow-up "Written in the Sand" led the Feb. 17-dated list.
The band first crowned Country Airplay with "Break Up With Him," from its debut LP, Meat and Candy, for two weeks in November 2015.