The 9513 Last.fm Chart Update (7-12-09)
Johnny Cash is dead and his house burned down and he’s the #1 artist in The 9513′s Last.fm group.
I’m not sure that any of those events are related, despite what Larry Gatlin may say. It’s no huge surprise that the Man in Black has been at or near the top of the charts for so long, given his musical output and his overwhelming popularity among Last.fm users. I’ve written about his Last.fm stats before, but his total number of plays (37,717,425) is more than the next 19 artists on the chart combined. Number 20, Taylor Swift, has the second-largest number of total plays, with a shade under 9.5 million. It will be interesting to watch the battle of teenage girls vs. music hipsters to see if the Cash fans can keep ahead of the Swift onslaught.
Behind Cash’s 25 The 9513 listeners come Sugarland and George Strait with 24 each. Brad Paisley’s domination of the chart lasted for exactly one week, as he drops down to #4 with 23. Martina McBride (19), who had a week-long run of her own when her last album came out, joined Dwight Yoakam (21), Brooks & Dunn and Dixie Chicks (both with 20), Alan Jackson and Kenny Chesney (both with 19 as well) in the Top 10.
On the Americana side, Charlie Robison continues to be the most popular artist with 14 listeners, but this is where the gray area between that genre and country music sets in. Is Patty Loveless (16) full-fledged Americana now? What about Hank (18), Merle (17) or Willie (15)? Is Gary Allan (18) one commercial failure away from joining the Americana club? Other more easily defined artists on the chart include Jason Michael Carroll (8 listeners), Drive-By Truckers (7) and Big & Rich (6, better than what Big or Rich could do on their own). Texas singer Owen Temple, who recently announced he was giving away his new record, has had some takers already, as 7 people listened to his music.
As Paisley’s American Saturday Night slips to #3 with 12 listeners, Sugarland picks up the slack, with Enjoy The Ride (14) and Love On The Inside (13) ending up #1 and #2, respectively. The Foundation from Zac Brown Band was among the albums tied for #4 with 11 listeners, and Lady Antebellum‘s self-titled debut (10) and The Life Of A Song by Joey + Rory (9) are among the others in the Top 10. Robison’s Beautiful Day should have more than 8 listeners, but the fact that it ranks higher than Kellie Pickler’s self-titled album (7) is a consolation.
The Top Singles chart is pretty eclectic this week. Sugarland’s “Joey” is #1 with 9 listeners, followed by Cash’s version of “Hurt,” Paisley’s “Then” and Sugarland’s “It Happens” all tied for #2 with 8. Aside from being one of the more depressing batches of top-ranked songs, it’s also one of the most economical in terms of titles. That’s five words in the titles of the top four songs. Reba’s “Strange” had 7 listeners as well, putting it in the Top 5 along with the positively verbose “Forever And Ever, Amen” from Randy Travis and “I Run To You” by Lady Antebellum. “Wrapped” had a pretty good week, as 5 people listened to the George Strait version and 2 more played the Bruce Robison version. No one played the Kelly Willis cover, though. Those songs with 6 listeners, tying for #9 on the charts, represent a greatest-hits selection from country music, including Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” Dwight Yoakam’s “Streets Of Bakersfield,” Conway Twitty’s “Hello Darlin’” and Vince Gill’s “When I Call Your Name.” Then there’s Adele’s “Chasing Pavements,” also at #9. There is a country connection there, as Adele sang it as a duet with Sugarland at the 2009 Grammys. I just hope that “Pour Some Sugar On Me” doesn’t chart, as Taylor Swift apparently has made that a country song, too.
Freebie of the Week: According to Last.fm tags, Assembly of Dust could be considered rock, bluegrass, jam band, country, folk or, for the spelling impaired, soulfull oldtimey jam. Led by singer Reid Genauer, the band’s upcoming fourth release, Some Assembly Required, features a wide array of special guests, including Bela Fleck, Jerry Douglas, Tony Rice and David Grisman. Other non-country guests include Martin Sexton, Richie Havens, Mike Gordan (Phish) and Drew Emmitt (Leftover Salmon). The band has been preparing for the release by giving away one track each week for anyone who signs up for their mailing list (http://www.aodust.com/). So far there are six available songs, including “Leadbelly” with Douglas, “Arc of the Sun” with Gordon and “Straight” with Theresa Andersson. The jam-band tag is understandable with these songs, particularly when they let the guest musicians cut loose, but a song like “Leadbelly” wouldn’t be out of place on a country station–well, not one of today’s country stations, but you get my meaning.
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