Luke Bryan Ascends to Headliner Status

Luke Bryan is a guy who’s equally comfortable with spring breaks and spring plantings — a musical amalgam of frat boy and farm hand. It was this unifying quality in building his fan base that earned him a spotlight appearance at the Billboard Country Music Summit in June.

March saw the release of Bryan’s Spring Break 4 … Suntan City EP, which mulled over the delights and downsides of that annual bacchanal. In October, the lanky Georgian undertook his fourth annual Farm Tour, a venture that enables him to give scholarships to students from farm families.

Diverse though Bryan’s audiences may be, they share the common trait of buying a lot of his records. In April, his Tailgates & Tanlines album, released in late 2011, was certified platinum and is now approaching double platinum for shipments of 2 million copies. Two of his singles — “Drunk on You” and “I Don’t Want This Night to End” — were declared double platinum in October.

Among the other major musical honors accorded Bryan in 2012 were male video of the year trophy at the CMT Music Awards for “I Don’t Want This Night to End” and the favorite male country artist prize at the American Music Awards.

Bryan, who worked the road with Jason Aldean this year, will headline his own Dirt Road Diaries tour in 2013, starting Jan. 17 in Evansville, Ind., with Thompson Square and Florida Georgia Line as his opening acts.