Thursday, January 3, 2013
– Taylor Swift had a great week on the charts. She enjoyed the best selling CD in the U.S. with "Red" for the week ending Dec. 30, 2012 on the Billboard chart with 241,000 units sold, down 12 percent.
Billboard reported that 54 percent of the sales were downloads, probably in part due to an Amazon MP3 sale of $1.99 on Dec. 24.
On the song chart, Swift was back on top with We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, switching spots with Cruise by Florida Georgia Line, which fell to second.
Hunter Hayes remained third with Wanted, while Carrie Underwood jumped from 11 to 4 with Blown Away. The Band Perry was fifth with Better Dig Two. Jason Aldean was seventh with The Only Way I Know with help from Luke Bryan and Eric Church. Hayes also was ninth with Somebody's Heartbreak, jumping six places.
Swift's Begin Again moved up 6 to 13. Newcomer Kacey Musgraves' Merry Go 'Round went from 24 to 19. And Swift also had the biggest mover by far with Red skyrocketing from 40 to 22.
On the album chart, Aldean's "Night Train" was second, up three. Underwood was third with "Blown Away," up three, while Florida Georgia Line moved from eight to four with "Here's to the Good Times." Little Big Town was fifth with "Tornado."
Hayes' self-titled debut stood at seven, up four. "Red River Blue" from Blake Shelton jumped from 16 to 8. Eric Church was ninth with "Chief," up three.
Brantley Gilbert was 17th with "Halfway to Heaven," up 4. Aaron Lewis was 23rd with "The Road," up 3. Dustin Lynch's self-titled debut was up 4 to 27. Jake Owen was 27th with "Barefoot Blue Jean Night," moving four spots. Easton Corbin's "All Over the Road" was 34th, up 3.
Colt Ford's "Declaration of Independence" was at 36, up 3. "Neon" by Chris Young was up 6 to 38. Eli Young Band's "Life At Best" was 39th, up 8.
On the bluegrass chart, Old Crow Medicine Show was first again with "Carry Me Back." Trampled by Turtles was second, up four, with "Stars and Satellites." The Goat Rodeo Sessions" from Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Chris Thile and Edgar Meyer remained third. Punch Brothers were fourth with "Who's Feeling Young Now?" Steve Ivey was fifth with "Best of Bluegrass."
Swift also enjoyed a great week on the Digital Songs chart as I Knew You Were Trouble returned to the top spot with 582,000 sold, up 163 percent. That was the fourth largest sales week ever for a song.
On the overall top 200, Aldean was 18th, Underwood 22nd, Florida Georgia Line 30th and Bryan 33rd.
More news for Taylor Swift
CD reviews for Taylor Swift
Journey to Fearless DVD
Part Behind The Music style documentary and part concert film, Taylor Swift's new Blu-ray release offers an interesting hybrid approach to the typical live performance video - an approach that hits more than it misses. "Journey To Fearless" focuses on Swift's meteoric rise from aspiring grade-school singer/songwriter to award-winning country and pop megastar while sprinkling in live performances. Hardcore Swift fans will find a lot to love on this single-disc set (which is also »»»
Taylor Swift has made the best CD of her young career with her fourth CD. The biggest difference is that Swift's singing, spotty on previous releases and live performances, is far far superior here.
Swift wrote all 14 songs here, which like her other albums tend to deal with relationships that have gone south. Swift's songwriting always has been one of her strengths, and that continues to be the case here - both lyrically and musically. Put simply, Swift knows a lot about penning »»»
Taylor Swift took the county world by storm with her huge selling debut and its five hit singles. With a huge marketing push and myspace, Swift was on her way. Kind of like an Avril Lavigne for the teen female country set.
Sophomore slump? There's no indication of that. Swift once again writes her material - all 13 songs here with help sometimes from Liz Rose, Colbie Caillat and John Rich. Swift writes of what she knows about - relationships and teen love come and gone in songs speak to her fans. »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk
When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Yes, Town Mountain is "really good"
Town Mountain exited the stage after concluding its regular set, and when the applause demanded the deserved encore, a fan yelled out "You guys are really good." That the mainly Asheville, N.C.-based bluegrass quintet demonstrated time and again.
Town Mountain merged bluegrass and country sounds with enough alterations during the 81-minute... »»»
Country News Digest
Elsewhere in the news
Currently at the CST blogs
Trampled By Turtles is an indie folk group, an alt.-country band or a bluegrass act - depending on how you choose to look at them. Perhaps it's best to view the outfit as the ultimate combo platter consisting of just about everything that's good about American music. They play wonderfully, yet they also write intelligent songs that draw everyone from Townes Van Zandt to Nirvana to Ralph Stanley. It's all good, and some (or all) of these influences can be spotted in most of Trampled By Turtles' enjoyable sounds.... »»»
If you move in alt.-country/Americana circles, you simply cannot get away from the name Parker Millsap. He's certainly one of the biggest buzz artists of 2014. Better still, his self-titled album lives up to all the hype. He's a smart songwriter and a passionate singer and is essential listening for anybody looking for high quality contemporary music. Millsap also creates music appealing to a wide variety of musical tastes. You can make a case that he's a country guy, but you can also hear a lot of blues and folk. And if you attempt to put a label on him, he'll quickly tear it right off.... »»»
What a difference a year can make. Last year, Sturgill Simpson was overly anxious about the arrival of his debut album, "High Top Mountain." This year, Simpson is simultaneously anticipating the birth of his debut child and his just-released sophomore album, "Metamodern Sounds in Country Music," and his mood couldn't be more relaxed and joyous.... »»»
NASHVILLE OUTLAWS: A Tribute To Motley Crue
If you're expecting down home, countrified versions of metal band Motley Crue songs from "Nashville Outlaws: A Tribute to Motley Crue," you probably don't listen to a whole lot of mainstream "country" music. Most likely, this album's original conception was a rather crass attempt to capitalize on the large contingent of classic rock fans that also listen to and enjoy older rock's continuing influence on contemporary country music. »»»
The No-Hit Wonder
After only four albums in a dozen years, there's a certain truthfulness that comes with a title like "The No-Hit Wonder." On the other hand, Cory Branan's apparent attempt at modesty belies a talent that deserves to garner notice, thanks to a wry yet infectious songwriting style that takes pains to share its strengths without ever requiring a second listen. If Branan is reticent to show he's worthy of chart placement, it's certainly not evident here. »»»
When we last heard from Sunny Sweeney in 2011 with "Concrete," her major label debut on Big Machine showed a very different side of Sweeney, whose album 5 years earlier was appropriately titled "Heartbreakers Hall of Fame." Texas honky tonk and traditional country songs blanketed her debut, but the same could not be said for "Concrete," which was the kind of disc that those bemoaning slicked up country had reason to be right. »»»
Lonesome and Then Some
Through 50 years, Larry Sparks has honed a full-bodied, soulful approach to singing bluegrass. He has a wonderful right hand, maintaining unbreakable rhythm while contributing leads that lend a bluesy country resonance to his songs. Sparks and his band form the consistent instrumental core with The Lonesome Ramblers appearing throughout. »»»
The current darlings of bluegrass, Flatt Lonesome returns with its second album; "Too" is a considerable improvement over last year's inconsistent debut. The strength of this family-based band, centered about the Robertson siblings, remains the passion for vocal performance. Whether considering Buddy's straightforward approach on "Dangerous Dan" or the sweet back-and-forth of sisters Charli and Kelsi, there is no denying the vocal prowess of this six-piece. »»»