Maren Morris Cements Her Star Status, Cardi B Producer JWhiteDidIt Jacks His Own Swag, Play-N-Skillz Are Behind The Most Shazam’d Song In The World & More.
After the record-breaking, crossover success of last year’s Zedd-assisted single “The Middle” exposed her to the most mainstream of audiences, we were curious to see how Maren Morris’ would carry those experiences over to her career as a solo country artist.
Turns out, she’d do so quite swimmingly!
Morris’ new sophomore album, GIRL, just shattered the record for largest-ever debut streaming week for a country album by a woman, landing at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 and No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums charts on the strength of nearly 24 million streams in its first week.
“I am blown away by the support this last week,” Morris said via press release. “My fans were already screaming the lyrics at the show the day after the album came out. I am so shocked and thankful to have broken this record for country music!”
Next up for Morris? Convincing the notoriously stubborn country music fans out there that her music is indeed “real” country. Or, y’know, not. Really: Who cares?
Also tearing up the charts and smashing records are the Dallas-sprung production duo Play-N-Skillz, whose new effort for Daddy Yankee not only hit No. 1 on the Latin Billboard chart, but is also currently the most Shazam’d song in the world.
Play-N-Skillz’s fellow Grammy-winning local producer JWhiteDidIt has continued his recent successes of late as well, serving as the beatsmith behind Iggy Azalea’s new single “Sally Walker.” Fans online have certainly taken notice of this fact, accusing the track of sounding a little too similar to Cardi B’s “Money,” which JWhiteDidIt also produced. We think there’s a little bit of Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble” in there too, for whatever it’s worth.
So long as we’re talking music videos and other moving pictures, we’ve got several more offerings to share from the last few days.
First up, let’s bask in the glory of the the artsy new clip for Solange’s “Almeda” single, which follows in Logan’s Run’s footsteps with a clip shot at the Fort Worth Water Gardens.
That clip, of course, comes from the Houston-born artist’s When I Get Home visual album, which the Dallas Observer notes had some stylistic assistance from Dallas-based fashion designed Charles Smith II. He’s not the only creative with local ties to Solange’s new videos, though, as Central Track Music Honors-winning R&B performer M3cca is among many locals with cameos in the visuals.
Speaking of contributions to greater efforts: Strand of Oaks performed its new single on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert last week with an all-star backing band that featured Jason Isbell, Amanda Shire, members of My Morning Jacket, plus North Texas’ own Will Johnson (Centro-matic, South San Gabriel) handling drum duties.
Also on the ol’ network TV circuit this week was a Cody Jinks tune being covered by American Idol hopeful Colby Swift, who made it to Hollywood on the strength of his “Cast No Stones” rendition.
Meanwhile, in the video for their new “Gutterboy Blues” single, household appliances come alive and torment the members of Fort Worth jangle rockers Mean Motor Scooter.
Moving on, the Bishop Arts neighborhood went and got itself a new destination for Old Fashioneds and live jazz via a new NOLA-themed cocktail lounge called Revelers Hall. For the purposes of this local music news and notes column, we’ll point out that one of the bar’s partners is Happy Bullets member Jason Roberts.
Elsewhere on the dial, T-Town Music owner (read: not the comedian) George Lopez and Dallas rap legend Big Tuck have a new radio show on the community-run station Y99.9-FM. Rather fittingly dubbed “Da Realist Show”, the show airs live Mondays through Thursdays from 9 to 11 p.m. and can be streamed online here if you’re outside of the broadcast area.
Lastly this week, a new weekly music series is kicking off at Toyota Music Factory‘ Texas Lottery Plaza on April 4 and continuing every Thursday through the end of May. Tickets are $5 presale or $10 at the door, and the full schedule of performers — which includes some decent names, to be sure — is as follows:
• April 4: Bowling for Soup and Not Ur Girlfrenz
• April 11: The Wild Feathers
• April 18: The Black Angels and Pearl Earl
• April 25: Phosphorescent and Sarah Jaffe
• May 2: A Hard Day’s Night
• May 9: Shooter Jennings and Dale Watson
• May 16: Rebirth Brass Band and Henry & The Invisibles
• May 23: Marc Broussard and Kirk Thurmond
• May 30: Joe Diffie
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