Thanks to her American Idol win, Carrie Underwood is already a pop star, but do country radio stations care?
Her first single, “Inside Your Heaven,” debuts at No. 1 on the all-genre Hot 100 this week, knocking Mariah Carey, Gwen Stefani, the Black Eyed Peas and 50 Cent each down a notch from last week. The commercial single is No. 1 on the country singles sales chart for the second week, but she arrives on the country airplay chart at a measly No. 59. The chart quits counting at No. 60.
However, there is still time for country radio programmers to make up their minds about the 22-year-old Oklahoma native. Her album won’t be released until the fall, but she will participate in the American Idol tour beginning July 12 in Sunrise, Fla. She is certainly courting the country audience, performing at the Grand Ole Opry, the CMA Music Festival and CMT’s 100 Greatest Duets concert earlier this month.
Meanwhile, the winner of that other singing contest — Nashville Star’s Erika Jo — crashes the country chart at No. 5 with her self-titled debut. Dwight Yoakam’s Blame the Vain enters at No. 8. However, both artists are completely absent from the airplay chart. The compilation Patriotic Country 2 debuts at No. 27.
Toby Keith holds the top spot with Honkytonk University, followed by the latest albums from Rascal Flatts, Keith Urban and Sugarland. Larry the Cable Guy holds his No. 6 spot, trailed by Keith’s Greatest Hits 2, Yoakam, Kenny Chesney’s When the Sun Goes Down and Big & Rich’s Horse of a Different Color. For the first time since its release more than a year ago, Gretchen Wilson’s Here For the Party falls out of the Top 10, settling at No. 11. (She has sold nearly 3.7 million copies.) Cowboy Troy’s Loco Motive tumbles from No. 5 to No. 13.
And you might be a redneck if you bought an album this week. In addition to Larry the Cable Guy’s strong showing, the Blue Collar Comedy Tour Rides Again soundtrack surges from No. 74 to No. 48. The Best of Jeff Foxworthy: Double Wide, Single Minded resurfaces at No. 62; Bill Engvall’s A Decade of Laughs and Ron White’s Drunk in Public reappear at No. 71 and 72, respectively.
On the airplay chart, Rascal Flatts’ “Fast Cars and Freedom” captures the pole position. Urban’s “Making Memories of Us” slips to No. 2, followed by Dierks Bentley’s “Lot of Leavin’ Left to Do,” Keith’s “As Good As I Once Was,” George Strait’s “You’ll Be There” and Sugarland’s “Something More,” at No. 3 to No. 6. Chesney’s “Keg in the Closet,” Faith Hill’s “Mississippi Girl” and Darryl Worley’s “If Something Should Happen” maintain their spots — Nos. 7, 8 and 9 — as Blake Shelton’s “Goodbye Time” jumps one slot to No. 10.
Strait’s “Texas” earns the week’s highest debut on the airplay chart, at No. 50. Clint Black enters at No. 54, just ahead of Aaron Tippin’s “Come Friday” at No. 58.