For just the second time in 2017, a country song hits Billboard’s Streaming Songs chart.
Kane Brown and Lauren Alaina make their first appearances on Streaming Songs after debuting on the ranking dated Oct. 28 with “What Ifs” at No. 48 with 11 million streams, according to Nielsen Music. (Alaina is the featured artist on the track by Brown.)
In addition to being both Brown and Alaina’s first chart appearance, the song — which concurrently rises to No. 1 on Country Airplay and spends a second week atop Hot Country Songs — is just the second non-Christmas country song to make the ranking in 2017, following Sam Hunt’s “Body Like a Back Road” (No. 16, July 22).
“What Ifs” is also one of just four to make the chart since the beginning of 2016 (Hunt’s “Break Up in a Small Town,” Florida Georgia Line’s “H.O.L.Y.”).
A lack of country tunes on Streaming Songs isn’t a particularly new development. Four made the chart in 2015: Thomas Rhett’s “Die a Happy Man” (No. 49, Nov. 28, 2015), Sam Hunt’s “House Party” (No. 44, Sept. 12, 2015, Steven Tyler’s “Love Is Your Name” (No. 43, July 25, 2015) and Heartland’s “I Loved Her First” (No. 24, Feb. 21, 2015), the latter returning to prominence nearly a decade after its initial release following a viral video of a father singing the song at his daughter’s wedding.
Brown and Alaina’s Streaming Songs appearance comes eight months after the song’s initial release; it debuted at No. 60 on the Country Airplay chart dated March 4, embarking on a 35-week climb to the top. It was Brown’s first No. 1 on that chart and Alaina’s second, following “Road Less Traveled” earlier this year (April 22). The song also rises 28-27 on the Billboard Hot 100.