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Father's Day Brings Strong Sales For Country Aritsts

By: Allen Jacobs

Last Updated: June 22, 2011 12:06 PM

After chronicling last week’s chart metrics, I expected this week’s sales numbers to show more negative sales with no big stars bringing people into stores. I didn’t account for Father’s Day and the effect that a cheap but good gift of music can have on holidays like this. Well, thanks to Father’s Day, many artists experienced large % sales increases or held steady instead of drastically falling. In fact, the only ‘drastic’ fall for country artists this week was last weeks noob’s: Ronnie Dunn and Randy Travis and I suspect their fall would’ve been even further if not for Father’s Day.

After losing #1 to some other artists (Brad Paisley for a pair of weeks and Ronnie Dunn last week), Jason Aldean regains the top-selling country album on the SoundScan Top 200 Current Album chart this week and has the #5 album overall. My Kinda Party moved another 50,000 copies and now the fifteen track album (which is on single #3) has sold nearly 1.4 million and even if it dropped 11,000 copies off of this week’s pace (something that hasn’t happened to Aldean since “Dirt Road Anthem” has been driving fans to buy the album), he’d still scan over that number by next week’s chart. Brad Paisley continues to sell well with “This Is Country Music” now having sold 278,000 copies in a month on the charts. The various artist Now That’s What I Call Country Music IV is next with nearly 27,000 copies finding a home or gift wrapper this week. These yearly compilations are fun for fans because they give the ones who don’t like iTunes a chance to have 15-20 of the biggest hits on country radio from the year. Zac Brown Band’s “Knee Deep” in the 900,000 sales figure; and You Get What You Give will most definitely scan past platinum next week (they’d have to lose 80% of their sales to not have that happen, something which won’t happen to a popular act like them). Taylor Swift’s Speak Now – riding high on “Mean” and “The Story Of Us” hitting big on the country and pop charts at the same time – rebounds into the Top 5 and the popular artist has now sold nearly 3.49 million and is all but assured of passing the 3.5 million mark next week. 

LW TW Artist Album Sales TW Sales Total
7 5 Jason Aldean My Kinda Party 51,246 1,362,217
8 9 Brad Paisley This Is Country Music 34,697 278,120
New 14 Various Now Country IV 26,760 26,772
20 15 Zac Brown Band You Get What You Give 24,447 993,161
22 18 Taylor Swift Speak Now 21,589 3,489,646

RONNIE DUNN, THE BAND PERRY AND BLAKE SHELTON GUIDE SIX THROUGH 10 ON CHART

Last week’s #1, Ronnie Dunn did lose 50% of its sales number from week over week sales but with a new single getting traction already in “Cost Of Livin’,” Ronnie still hangs out in the Top 20 of the SoundScan Top 200 Current Albums Chart. 60,000 copies have now found homes in the two weeks on the charts.  The sixth best-selling country album this week is The Band Perry’s The Band Perry. They have officially passed the 600,000 scanned mark with “You Lie” threatening to hit #1 sometime soon (if Blake Shelton’s “Honey Bee” doesn’t hold down #1 from both them and Taylor’s “Mean”). Lady Antebellum is, like Shelton, working on a single from a new album yet, also like Shelton, their most current album continues to sell boatloads of copies (and they’ve sold nearly 11x more than Shelton too). Blake’s Loaded The Best of Blake Shelton, an album I purchased for my own father for a Father’s Day gift, scans past the 300,000 sales moniker as he gets ready to release Red River Blue in July. It’s going to be his only release of 2011 but it will likely sell very well given his new level of celebrity thanks to being on the popular show The Voice (and having the second most-played country single ever behind “Live Like You Were Dying”). Rascal Flatts have just released “Easy” to radio and the duet, which features Natasha Bedingfield (“Unwritten”), could very well push Nothing Like This to Platinum sales right before the band sets up their follow-up album for a November or January 2012 release.

LW TW Artist Album Sales TW Sales Total
5 19 Ronnie Dunn Ronnie Dunn 20,661 66,090
31 29 The Band Perry The Band Perry 13,190 605,771
42 39 Lady Anthebellum Need You Now 12,127 3,544,833
54 40 Blake Shelton Loaded…Best of Blake… 11,817 300,888
45 41 Rascal Flatts Nothing Like This 11,788 876,804

KENNY CHESNE'S "HEMINGWAY'S WHISKEY" REMAINS STRONG ON ALBUM CHART

The eleventh best-selling country album this week belongs to Kenny Chesney. Hemingway’s Whiskey already features three #1 hits in “The Boys of Fall,” “Somewhere With You” and “Live A Little” and all signs point to the Grace Potter-featured “You And Tequila” finding itself topping the chart by the end of summer.  Zac Brown Band’s The Foundation leaps back up the charts a bit and we find the three-year old album (which is remarkably still ‘current’) selling nearly another 10,000 copies to get over the 2.64 million sold mark.  Alison Krauss’ Paper Airplane remains the best-selling Bluegrass album with another 9,000 fans taking the album home and giving Union Station 233,000 copies sold while Sara Evans sits right behind them with Stronger from Sara Evans. While title song “A Little Bit Stronger” hit #1, it’s possible her follow-up single “My Heart Can’t Tell You No” won’t do as well, particularly since it’s a cover of a classic 80s Rod Stewart power ballad. Randy Travis’ excellent Anniversary Celebration slides 10 spots on our country tally from 5 to 15 this week (nearly 60 on the Top 200 Albums Chart). This wasn’t un-expected with the album not scoring a hit yet (Though the single may and should be a hit). It was one of like four albums on our entire rundown to have a negative sales number this week.

LW TW Artist Album Sales TW Sales Total
50 44 Kenny Chesney  Hemingway's Whiskey 11,202 850,706
68 53 Zac Brown Band The Foundation 9,419 2,644,654
47 57 Alison Krauss/Union Station Paper Airplane 9,085 233,893
60 67 Sara Evans Stronger 7,945 222,606
19 78 Randy Travis Anniversary Celebration 6,715 25,993

COLT FORD'S "EVERY CHANCE I GET" MARCHING TOWARDS 100K SOLD

Sugarland’s Incredible Machine leads off the last quarter of the Top 20 Country Albums on SoundScan’s chart this week with the album now passing the 1.01 million scanned mark. Colt Ford’s Every Chance I Get which has a great Father-Daughter song in “She Likes To Ride In Trucks”, sits next with the album now having sold over 64,000 copies. The album is a sure bet to pass Chicken & Biscuits as Colt’s second-best selling album after Ride Through The Country but I have a feeling that Every Chance I Get will eclipse Ride sometime later on, particularly if “Trucks” breaks through even just a little bit (meaning a Top 40 hit). Tim McGraw’s Number One Hits sits next and has now sold 378,000 copies and proves that Curb Records knows how to milk an artist’s catalog to maximize profits (all labels are good at this on some level). Miranda Lambert’s Revolution has scored another 6,000 copies sold as she gets ready to release a Pistol Annie’s song to radio and retail.  Aaron Lewis’ R&J Records album Town Line rounds out the Top 20 and has now sold 170,000 copies since being released in the spring of this year. 

LW TW Artist Album Sales TW Sales Total
74 80 Sugarland The Incredible Machine 6,313 1,010,036
92 87 Colt Ford Every Chance I Get 5,975 64,232
86 89 Tim McGraw Number One Hits 5,844 378,647
71 90 Miranda Lambert Revolution 5,785 1,337,289
97 92 Aaron Lewis  Town Line 5,375 170,100

THOMPSON SQUARE RIDE "ARE YOU GONNA KISS ME OR NOT TO NEARLY 200,000 ALBUMS SOLD!

The interesting album section starts off with Thompson Square’s self-titled album.  The record features “Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not” and the Top 30 hit “I Got You” along with “Let’s Fight” and will continue to march to Gold sales status as it releases hit after hit (“Kiss” is already Platinum for digital single sales). Eric Church’s Carolina has a RIAA Gold certification but is still just under 25,000 copies away from scanning that number while late July will bring us “Chief.” Billy Currington’s Enjoy Yourself is next on our chart rundown and with two #1 singles on the album, one would expect it to have sold Gold yet it hasn’t even gotten to 400,000 copies scanned yet (it’s 70,000 away). I have a feeling that there’ll be one more single after “Love Done Gone” from the album (likely to be “Until You”) and that will help get Billy his third RIAA certified album after the Gold Little Bit of Everything and the Platinum Doin’ Something Right. Keith Urban’s “Long Hot Summer” most surely will help him Get Closer to platinum sales status and I actually think the single has an outside shot at #1, which would give him his first pair of #1 hits in a row since 2008’s “You Look Good In My Shirt” and “Sweet Thing.” Interesting chart numbers show that all but “It’s A Love Thing,” Keith’s very first solo single in 1999, have gotten to the Top 6 or better and that he has nine Gold-certified digital singles. Brantley Gilbert may have moved from Colt Ford’s Average Joes label to Scott Borchetta’s The Valory Music Co. label but that doesn’t mean that the Average Joe’s version of Halfway To Heaven hasn’t found an audience (it has the pre-Dann Huff version of Top 35 hit “Country Must Be Country Wide”). The album has now sold nearly 120,000 copies with 100,000 of those coming before “Country Wide” was a single. 

LW TW Artist Album Sales TW Sales Total
92 107 Thompson Square Thompson Square 4,892 185,288
134 116 Eric Church Carolina 4,435 475,281
123 117 Billy Currington Enjoy Yourself 4,358 333,847
149 135 Keith Urban Get Closer 3,787 601,780
167 151 Brantley Gilbert Halfway To Heaven 3,414 118,894

Next week will bring us the chart debut of quite a few albums including Justin Moore, the Greencards and Corey Smith.  Check back here to see where these bands and Roughstock and Sugarland favorite Matt Nathanson (who will be on the ‘interesting albums chart as he’s more pop/rock) fare. 

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