Country Countdown: Big & Rich Make History With 'That's Why I Pray'

Big & Rich: How Bon Jovi and George Lucas Named Their New Album

Big & Rich: How Bon Jovi and George Lucas Named Their New Album

B ig & Rich post the highest debut by a duo in the Nielsen BDS era, as "That's Why I Pray" opens at No. 24 with the Hot Shot Debut, Most Increased Audience and Breaker triple crown on Country Songs.

In the 22-plus years since Billboard and Nielsen BDS pioneered technology-based radio charts, Big & Rich is only the third duo to open inside the top 30. Brooks & Dunn's "My Maria" arrived at No. 30 on the April 4, 1996 chart, and Sugarland debuted at No. 27 with "All I Want to Do" on the chart dated June 7, 2008. Brooks & Dunn's track eventually spent three weeks at the summit, and Sugarland's single led for one week.

Previously, Big & Rich's best start was a No. 41 debut five years ago with "Lost in This Moment," the duo's lone No. 1 on the audience chart; it spent two weeks atop the chart in the summer of 2007. With spins at 83 of the 131 stations monitored for the chart, the duo's stellar debut with "Pray" is driven substantially by coordinated hourly play on May 22 at Clear Channel stations. With 8,000 downloads, the track bubbles just under the chart threshold on Country Digital Songs.

High atop Country Songs, Kip Moore's "Somethin' 'Bout a Truck" logs a second week at No. 1, marking the first time an artist's first leader spent more than one week atop the chart since Jake Owen's "Barefoot Blue Jean Night" logged two weeks last September. No such song has spent more than two weeks at No. 1 since Miranda Lambert led for four weeks in June/July 2010. Moore's track sells 55,000 downloads and ranks at No. 4 on Country Digital Songs.

Carrie Underwood's "Blown Away" meanwhile holds at No. 1 on Country Albums with 45,000 sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. And, Luke Bryan's "Drunk on You" becomes his third No. 1 on Country Digital Songs (81,000 downloads). A May 21 appearance on "The Bachelorette" (ABC) also gives Gloriana its best showing on that chart, where "(Kissed You) Good Night" flies 14-3 (63,000 sold).