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Beyoncé Tops Hot Country Chart With 'Texas Hold 'Em'

Beyoncé becomes the first woman to have No. 1s on both the Hot Country and Hot Hip-Hop/R&B charts.

Source: MEGA

The singer notched a Hot Country No. 1 with "Texas Hold 'Em."

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Following a period of uncertainty as to when (or whether) the song would find its way into country radio rotation, Beyoncé's new single "Texas Hold 'Em" has topped Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, the outlet revealed on Feb. 20. The singer's other new single, "16 Carriages," also made the chart's top 10 at No. 9.

With this milestone, Beyoncé becomes the first woman to notch No. 1s on both the Hot Country Songs chart and the Hot Hip-Hop/R&B Songs chart. Released during the Super Bowl on Feb. 11, “Texas Hold ‘Em” drew 19.2 million official streams and 4.8 million in airplay audience, as well as selling 39,000 units via download in the U.S. for the chart period ending Feb. 15, the outlet reported. "Texas Hold 'Em" also makes an appearance on Billboard's Hot 100 chart, coming in at No. 2, while "16 Carriages" lands at No. 38.

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Beyoncé's country singles have helped resume some long-simmering debates about race in country music.

Both songs will be included on the singer's eighth solo studio album, Act II, scheduled for release on March 29.

The songs' release helped resume a long-simmering conversation about race in country music, especially when an Oklahoma country radio station responded to a caller request for "Texas Hold 'Em" with the message: “Hi – we do not play Beyoncé on KYKC as we are a country music station.” After the response went viral, the station reversed course, and began playing it.

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It's possible simple scheduling issues were to blame for the slow-rollout on some country stations. The singles were both dropped with no advance warning on Super Bowl Sunday, and while artists -- Beyoncé in particular -- have been making surprise releases a habit in recent years, radio formats can sometimes move slower. Indeed, the singer's label, Columbia, didn't even officially service the songs to country radio until the following Tuesday.

However, there's sensitivity to the issue, considering the hesitation from some in the country community to accept her 2016 country single "Daddy Lessons." Though clearly country in style -- enough so that she performed it with the Chicks on that year's Country Music Association Awards -- the song was reportedly rejected by committee from consideration for the Grammy Awards in the country categories, and some veteran country stars like Travis Tritt spoke out against Beyoncé's inclusion on the show.

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Source: MEGA

The singer has embraced country music before, with her 2016 single "Daddy Lessons.'

The program director for a Virginia country radio station addressed the appropriateness of "Texas Hold 'Em" on the country format in an exchange with Q last week.

“I think the interesting thing about this song...is that if Shania Twain put this song out – because to me this reminds me of some of the upbeat things she put out in the '90s – people would say it's one of the best things she's ever put out, they'd say, 'Shania's back!' and they'd think it was great,” said Dave Parker, program director for country station US 106.1 in Norfolk, Virginia. “But because it's from someone who obviously has been in the R&B world for almost her entire career, I think people will judge it based off of that singer's discography and not the merit of the song. But I think it would be hard for anyone to argue that that's not something sonically that fits in the format."


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