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TikTok Sparks Country Chart Debuts for Self-Released Singles by Chase McDaniel & Kyle Clark

McDaniel's "Project" bounds in at No. 1 on Country Digital Song Sales.

Propelled by a growing social media presence, singer-songwriter Chase McDaniel scores his first Billboard chart entry as “Project” blasts in at No. 1 on the Country Digital Song Sales list dated June 11.

Self-released May 27, the track sold 10,400 downloads in its first week, ending June 2, according to Luminate. It concurrently starts at No. 4 on the all-genre Digital Song Sales chart and No. 46 on the airplay-, streaming- and sales-based Hot Country Songs chart.

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McDaniel wrote “Project” with Jerry Alan Jacobs, who produced it.

Sales, as well as 748,000 official U.S. streams in the tracking week, can be traced, in part, to McDaniel’s 150,000 TikTok followers – a sum that has generated over 1 million likes for his clips on the platform. (Activity on TikTok does not currently contribute directly to Billboard‘s charts.)

McDaniel first teased “Project” by posting snippets of it on both TikTok and Facebook leading up to its official release. “I kind of told my friends that it was now or never,” he tells Billboard. “My buddies got into the act and really supported me. They created fun little dances and such, and it all helped to create a viral moment. Thankfully, it all paid off as it converted into some decent sales. I’ve worked really hard, and this achievement is nothing short of amazing.”

The Nashville-based McDaniel, originally from Campbellsville, Ky., is working on an EP that he hopes to release this year. He has also been steadily building his fanbase by playing shows in and around Nashville.

‘Hot’ Start

Its profile likewise swelled in part by TikTok, Kyle Clark’s self-released “Hope It’s Hot Out” sizzles onto Country Digital Song Sales at No. 10 with 2,100 downloads sold in its opening week. Clark, who makes his maiden appearance on a Billboard chart, has accrued over 115,000 TikTok followers.

Chase McDaniel, as noted above, and Clark continue a string of artists breaking through on Billboard‘s country charts after building buzz on social media, especially TikTok. On the Country Digital Song Sales survey dated May 21, Nate Smith’s debut single “Whiskey On You” opened at No. 2 with 13,800 sold. Smith initially released the song independently before he signed to Arista Nashville (under the Sony Music Nashville banner), which plans to promote the track to country radio.

‘Double’ Domination

Morgan Wallen‘s Dangerous: The Double Album rebounds from No. 2 to lead Top Country Albums for a record-extending 60th week, up 4% to 54,000 equivalent album units.

The 30-song set dethrones Zach Bryan’s 34-track effort, and first Top Country Albums leader, American Heartbreak, which dips to No. 2 in its second week (40,000, down 43%).

Meanwhile, current Dangerous single “Wasted On You” tops Hot Country Songs for a fourth week. It pushes 4-3 for a new best on Country Airplay, up 12% to 25.4 million in radio reach, and drew 12 million U.S. streams (up 6%) and sold 3,900 downloads (up less than 1%) in the tracking week.

Triple Threat

Jason Aldean‘s “Trouble With a Heartbreak” crowns Country Airplay for a third week, up 3% to 27.9 million audience impressions.

Aldean adds his sixth Country Airplay No. 1 that has reigned for at least three weeks, and his second in a row, after “If I Didn’t Love You,” with Carrie Underwood, ruled for three frames beginning last October.

Of Aldean’s 25 Country Airplay leaders, his  longest-commanding is “Big Green Tractor,” which dominated for four frames starting in September 2009.