Maren Morris Tops The Charts, Leon Bridges Covers Ginuwine and Smash Mouth Digs Parquet Courts.

As was the case this time last year, North Texas artists are once again killing it on the charts.

Just this week, Maren Morris‘s Hero debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard country albums chart, moving 37,000 units in its first week. That figure was good enough to also put Morris at No. 5 on the Billboard 200.

That industry standard-bearer is full of NTX artists this week, actually. At No. 3 is future Oak Cliff resident Paul Simon, who also debuted a new album last week. Down at No. 9 is Blake Shelton, whose newest album features a single penned by Grammy-winning Dallas expat Liz Rose. At No. 18 is yet another debut, this one from HellYeah. Meanwhile, No. 3 is that Kirk Franklin– and Post Malone-featuring Kanye album, and at No. 40 is Selena Gomez‘s latest.

In all likelihood, though, those names are just the tip of the iceberg. Tons of massive hit records feature contributions from DFW studio musicians, songwriters and producers. For instance, the hook on Pitbull‘s colossal 2013 single “Timber” was played by Rockwall harmonica player Paul “Harp Lips” Harrington. It wasn’t until more recently, though, that Harrington finally got that five-figure royalty check for his efforts. Thanks a lot, Digital Performance Right in Sound Recordings Act!

Then again, there have always been pretty giant songs coming from area musicians. Who can forget Drowning Pool‘s 2001 song “Bodies”? Certainly not 82-year-old John “Headbanger” Hetlinger whose recent performance of the song on America’s Got Talent went viral last week.

Speaking of interesting covers, Leon Bridges whipped out a cover of Ginuwine‘s “Pony” during his Bonnaroo set over the weekend with a little help from fellow R&B man Jonny P. Check out his full hour-long set from the fest below. The cover starts around the 45-minute mark.

Meanwhile, at their eponymous festival, the Toadies covered David Bowie‘s “Sound and Vision,” which hopefully hits the ol’ YouTubes here in a couple days. Also at Dia de los Toadies, the band premiered a new tune called “Polly Jean,” which will be included on a studio album the band will begin recording next month. Wonder if it’s named after PJ Harvey? They did cover one of her tunes at Dia 2012, after all.

Next up, the Toadies head to Martin House for their official beer release party, and then onto Main Street Garden Park for the third annual Smoked barbecue festival, which just released its lineup. Joining them at that deliciously curated festival are Shiny Ribs, Dirty River Boys and The Roomsounds.

Also heading back into the studio is Eisley, which is recording its fifth LP with Will Yip (Circa Survive, Lauryn Hill). Per the band, the album will stay true to the band’s “signature dreamy sound.” Adds the vocalist/guitarist Sherri DuPree-Bemis: “Musically, you could say it’s classic Eisley, in the sense that it’s melodic, moody pop and is written from the heart. Lyrically, it’s very whimsical; it has a vibe that will take you into its own world and let you escape your normal life for a few minutes. I like to cloak things in a little mystery and romance; I think it’s part of what makes all of Eisley’s songs sound like they’re from the same world.”

Then there’s Jay Luse, who is also working on his debut EP, Soulful Attraction, a fact he promotes with the release of a video for the album’s single “Perception.”

Another quirky new clip comes from Sudie, whose “The Vicious Kind” clip is the latest local video to lull you in with several minutes of normalcy before ratcheting things up a few notches with some well-timed blood and gore.

Staying on the video front, while Rikki Blu‘s “Flow River” video might have been filmed in his current Los Angeles stomping grounds, the dude still reps the Triple D via his throwback Dallas Stars jersey sweater in it. I mean, the song is from an album named after Dallas’ Pleasant Grove neighborhood, for chrissakes.

More fitting visuals accompanying locally-sprung noise units include Bruce Blay‘s ambient project Melting Season, which is paired with ambient footage courtesy of Dallas Ambient Music Night alumn Brian Tomerlin.

Yet another new video released this week comes courtesy of The O’s. The clip for “Go Slow” from February’s Honeycomb was directed by Josh Jordan, who is also currently working on his still-unfunded indie film This World Won’t Break.

Finally, for some reason, somebody told me that the fact that Smash Mouth enjoys the music of Parquet Courts is apparently newsworthy to some.

It is what it is, I guess.

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