Blake Shelton, Florida Georgia Line Lead 2013 Mid-Year SoundScan Country Charts

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Blake Shelton performs during the Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert on May 29, 2013 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

During the first six months of 2013, Blake Shelton's "Based on a True Story" and Florida Georgia Line's "Cruise" dominate country album and digital song tallies, selling 703,000 and 3.1 million respectively, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

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Shelton's set benefits from his exposure as a celebrity coach on NBC’s "The Voice" and the album's first two singles: "Sure Be Cool If You Did" and "Boys 'Round Here." Both spent time at No. 1 on the Nielsen BDS-driven Country Airplay chart during the first half of the year, and they appear at Nos. 3 and No. 5 on the year-to-date top 10 Country Digital Songs list.

Florida Georgia Line's track dominated the country radio chart in the closing weeks of 2012, and due mostly to a remix with rapper Nelly, is now climbing the Top 40 charts and dominates the Hot Country Songs tally for an 18th cumulative week (July 13 chart). The multi-platform exposure is evidenced by the huge lead the track commands so far this year, roughly 1.3 million downloads more than the No. 2 song, Darius Rucker's "Wagon Wheel." The duo's "Here's to the Good Times" album also ranks as the year's third-biggest selling country album.

On the January through June 2013 country digital songs list, all but three of the top 10 titles have sold more than one million. For the same period last year, only four of the top 10 songs sold more than a million, led by Luke Bryan’s “Drunk on You,” which moved 1.4 million during that time frame. All of the titles on the 2013 recap were major hits at country radio, compared to the 2012 recap which included Taylor Swift’s “Eyes Open” and “Safe & Sound” (featuring the Civil Wars), neither of which were embraced by country radio.

The top selling album for the first half of 2012 was Lionel Richie’s duets set, titled “Tuskegee,” which sold 912,000 during the period. Ranking at No. 2 on last year’s recap, the top selling set by a core artist was Carrie Underwood’s “Blown Away” (602,000). This year, Taylor Swift’s “Red” ranks at No. 2, buoyed by crossover drivers such as “I Knew You Were Trouble,” which peaked at No. 2 on the Hot 100 in January.

Overall country album sales stand at 19.54 million this year -- up less than 1% compared to a year ago (19.47 million). Country digital song sales are at 92.53 million for 2013 thus far -- up 11% versus a year ago (83.55 million). To compare, overall album sales are down by 6%, while overall song sales slide by 2%.

Mid-Year 2013

Top Country Albums

 ArtistTitleYTD Sales*
1Blake SheltonBased on a True Story 703,000
2Taylor SwiftRed 616,000
3Florida Georgia LineHere's to the Good Times 610,000
4Luke BryanSpring Break...Here to Party 452,000
5Tim McGrawTwo Lanes of Freedom 373,000
6The Band PerryPioneer 366,000
7Lady AntebellumGolden 344,000
8Hunter HayesHunter Hayes 337,000
9Little Big TownTornado 319,000
10Jason AldeanNight Train 305,000
year to date sales through the week ending June 30, 2013


Mid-Year 2013

Top Country Digital Songs

 ArtistTitleYTD Sales*
1Florida Georgia LineCruise3,112,000
2Darius RuckerWagon Wheel1,768,000
3Blake Shelton (ft. Pistol Annies & Friends)Boys 'Round Here1,445,000
4Tim McGraw (ft. Taylor Swift)Highway Don't Care1,352,000
5Blake SheltonSure Be Cool If You Did1,344,000
6Miranda LambertMama's Broken Heart1,187,000
7Florida Georgia LineGet Your Shine On1,139,000
8Lady AntebellumDowntown981,000
9Hunter HayesWanted930,677
10The Band PerryBetter Dig Two927,000
year to date sales through the week ending June 30, 2013