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Shelton, Bryan remain atop Billboard charts

Thursday, March 21, 2013 – Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan both held onto the top spots of the Billboard Hot Country Songs and Albums charts respectively for the week ending March 30. Shelton reigns with Sure Be Cool If You Did, while Bryan led with "Spring Break...Here to Party."

Lady Antebellum's new single, Downtown, was second, up one, switching spots with Miranda Lambert's Mama's Broken Heart. Carrie Underwood held the fourth spot with Two Black Cadillacs. Darius Rucker jumped from 11 to 5 with Wagon Wheel. Lee Brice moved from nine to six with I Drive Your Truck. Kenny Chesney broke into the top 10 - at 10 - with Pirate Flag.

I Can Take It From There by Chris Young stood at 18 up 3. Tim McGraw's new single, Highway Don't Care, with Taylor Swift, jumped 7 to 19. The Band Perry debuted at 23 with DONE. Jason Aldean's 1994 was at 27, up 4.

Florida Georgia Line was second on the Country Albums chart with "Here's to the Good Times." Swift was third with "Red," Little Big Town fourth with "Tornado" and Tim McGraw fifth with "Two Lanes of Freedom." Eric Church went from 13 to 10 with "Chief."

Brice was 14th with "Hard 2 Love," up 3. Kip Moore was 16th with "Up All Night," moving up 4. Shooter Jennings debuted at 19 with "The Other Life." Jake Owen's "Barefoot Blue Jean Night" was 25, up 5. Scotty McCreery was at 36 with "Clear As Day," jumping 5. Blackberry Smoke went from 48 to 39 with "The Whippoorwill," while Love And Theft's self-titled disc was at 40, up 4.

On the bluegrass albums chart, Christian artist Steven Curtis Chapman debuted in first with "Deep Roots." Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out" were second with "Timeless Hits From the Past: Bluegrassed." Old Crow Medicine Show were third with "Carry Me Back." Old Man Markley fell from first to fourth with "Down Side Up." The SteelDrivers were fifth with "Hammer Down."

On the overall top 200, Bryan was third after being first last week. Florida Georgia Line was 14th, Swift 22nd, Little Big Town 36th and McGraw 37th.

More news for Luke Bryan

CD reviews for Luke Bryan

Farm Tour...Here's to the Farmer CD review - Farm Tour...Here's to the Farmer
Luke Bryan has been in that "hardware" phase of his career for the last few years. There have been several armloads of awards, many on the strength of the high-caliber singles from 2013's "Crash My Party." It might present a challenge to stay grounded. But Bryan has kept himself busy with work for charities (he's embarking on a traditional tour of farms to benefit his scholarship fund), and the use of the EP - this marks his eighth. Many artists use the EP format »»»
Kill the Lights CD review - Kill the Lights
When Luke Bryan announces, "I've got that music for your ear" during the single "Kick the Dust Up," listeners should know right off this is not a collection of sounds for every ear. It's targeted toward the young and reckless set instead, where consequences don't seem to matter. There's no better example of this loose approach than the revenge sex expressed through a duet with Little Big Town's Karen Fairchild on "Home Alone Tonight," where »»»
Spring Break...Checkin Out CD review - Spring Break...Checkin Out
The funky keyboard line that introduces the song "Checkin' Out," with its Ray Charles soulful feel, fills the listener with false promise that "Spring Break...Checkin' Out," the latest and last in Luke Bryan's spring break EP series, might mark a more innovative direction in the bro country star's music. The song even includes a wonderful acoustic guitar solo that gives it a loose, freewheeling feel. Unfortunately, this singer is far too aware of which side »»»
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: Kristofferson gives insight, but no easy answers – When they say music gets better with age, they're not always just talking about songs alone; sometimes they're also referring to the listener. When Kris Kristofferson sings, "Well, I woke up Sunday morning/With no way to hold my head that didn't hurt," to smartly open "Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down," he... »»»
Concert Review: No sugarcoating, Welch dishes out an experience – Gillian Welch (accompanied, as always, by master guitarist David Rawlings), celebrated her "The Harrow & The Harvest" album with a powerful night of music. She apologized many times for the utter unhappiness expressed through this album's songs, admitting it's "not the most chipper album" at one point.... »»»
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