Country music lovers seem to be making a historical moment right now as the music genre hit a new high. In the week ending April 9, Nielsen Music/MRC Data has recorded 1.244 billion on-demand audio streams of country songs across digital platforms, which includes all the leading services: Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, YouTube, Tidal and Soundcloud. This overtakes the already-high record in the week ending March 5, which recorded 1.201 billion audio spins. 

In addition to that, the total streams in country songs, both on-demand audio, and video, take a massive jumped to 1.389 billion in the week ending April 9. This is by far the most significant week total for country music in eight months.

This new historical record is credited to three musical plays.

Sam Hunt Released His Highly-Anticipated New Album

On Friday, April 3, country star Sam Hunt released his long-awaited album that marks his first new full-length project since 2014, “Southside.” It came rushing to No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums and No. 5 on Billboard’s all-genre chart. It earns No. 1 on US iTunes Album Sales Chart too. Its songs, audio, and video combined have also recorded an impressive 36.8 million streams. 

Music fans have also voted for Hunt’s album as their favorite new release from this week in Billboard’s poll. It garnered 31% of the vote this week, receiving more votes than music from Drake, Troye Sivan, Frank Ocean, and others. 

Hunt’s new songs in “Southside” are full of personal and emotional lyrics about the singer’s life over the past several years. It opens with “2016,” a remorseful, apologetic song with classic country lyrics that tells a variety of misdeeds, including chasing other women.

His latest “Southside” single, “Hard to Forget,” also entered the Top 10 at country radio this week at No. 9. This song features a catchy tune that every country music lovers will love. It has captured the singer’s fight in trying to distance himself from a past lover who won’t seem to leave him alone by playing “hard to forget.” 

Sam Hunt‘s sophomore album has significantly helped in the latest tracking week as he draws from his own life to paint candid portraits for listeners.

The Academy of Country Music hosted “Our Country”

The country music also got pushed up high as more than 20 country artists joined forces for ACM Presents: Our Country. The two hour-television-special on CBS has helped stirred interest in country songs. 

It featured some of the biggest stars in the genre performing from the comfort of their homes. Gayle King hosted the event filled with the inspiration and entertainment we all need right now.

Some of the best moments of the special came from Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani serenading each other with their latest duet “Nobody But You,” giving viewers a glimpse of the couple’s life in Oklahoma together.

Kane Brown and John Legend also made the world television debut for their new poignant ballad and duet “Last Time I Say Sorry.” Shania Twain broke out into her upbeat “Honey I’m Home” and “Man! I Feel Like a Woman” as she serenaded an attentive horse from her stable.

Lady Antebellum’s children also stole the spotlight when the little ones joined the trio as they sang their powerful song, “What I’m Leaving For,” from their latest album “Ocean.” Dave Haywood’s son, Cash, even made his way into the front of the screen to make some funny faces.

Other big stars present in the event are Carrie Underwood, Tim McGraw, Miranda Lambert, Sheryl Crow, Eric Church, etc.

CMT Debuted An All-Star Tribute To Kenny Rogers

CMT’s virtual tribute concert to pay homage to Kenny Rogers, CMT Giants Kenny Rogers: A Benefit for MusiCares, has also contributed to the record week. It features at-home performances and interviews from the likes of Dolly Parton, Lionel Richie, Michael McDonald, Jason Isbell, Rascal Flatts, Lady Antebellum, and more.

Parton belted out a beautiful rendition of “Sweet Music Man,” a Rogers composition she covered as a single in 1977. Lady Antebellum performed Rogers and Dolly Parton’s famous duet “Islands in the Stream,” which they revealed has significantly inspired their group. Gavin DeGraw performed the Rogers and Sheena Easton duet “We’ve Got Tonight” solo with the piano while Rascal Flatts sang “Through the Years.” These were just some of the most notable performances in the virtual tribute concert.

Everyone in the music industry and thousands of fans all over the world mourned when Kenny Rogers died at 81. He has inspired and helped hundreds of starting artists, just like Robert De Niro in the movie industry or Edu Birdie in the world academic writing. (If you need any help, feel free to contact EduBirdie. Professional writers will help you arrange any written work). Indeed, Rogers’ six-decade career is a pillar to the country music.

Singer-songwriter and actress Rita Wilson hosted the virtual tribute, which has also showcased rare archival photos, interviews, and performances, including some clips and commentary from Kenny himself.

Though R&B/hip-hop still remains the genre with the most significant share in the streaming market, especially that the genre’s fans were the early adopters of streaming services. R&B/hip-hop accounts for 31.09% of year-to-date on-demand audio streams. But for the time being, country music has been playing a great catch-up.