Black River Entertainment recording artist Kelsea Ballerini’s smash debut single “Love Me Like You Mean It” tops both the Mediabase and Billboard Country Airplay Charts for the first time this week. The proven hit co-written by Ballerini earns her a spot alongside only 10 of country music’s leading women including Faith Hill, Trisha Yearwood and Carrie Underwood who have achieved a #1 with their debut country single.
Additionally, Ballerini’s #1 marks the first time a solo female has landed at #1 on the Billboard Country Airplay chart in nearly three years since Carrie Underwood’s “Blown Away” on Nov. 3, 2012.
“It’s a very exciting time for all of us at Black River,” said Vice President of Promotion Mike Wilson. “It’s an honor to lead this promotion team in taking Kelsea to country radio. Her music is great and radio has really embraced her. I’m so proud of our team and all of their efforts. This is a huge accomplishment!”
“Going into this, my goal with this first single was to introduce myself,” said Ballerini. “I believed in this song from the minute we wrote it and I always thought it would be the right first single and a great introduction of me. But there’s a fear that comes with that, because it’s the first impression with radio, with fans and with media. It’s so cool to know that the peace that I had when I wrote this song and picked it as the single has led me all the way to it being a #1. To be in a group with artists like Carrie Underwood, Faith Hill and Deana Carter that have had debut #1s and then had brilliant careers after that, makes me so excited for what’s to come. Today, I just want to celebrate with my team because it’s a big victory for all of us, we’ve all worked really hard. Thank you Country Radio for making this HUGE milestone happen and making one of my biggest dreams come true.”
Written by Ballerini, Forest Glen Whitehead, Josh Kerr and Lance Carpenter, “Love Me Like You Mean It” is featured on Ballerini’s debut album THE FIRST TIME, produced by Forest Glen Whitehead and Jason Massey. Praised by ROLLING STONE as one of the “10 Artists You Need To Know” from all genres, the breakout album debuted Top 5 on the Billboard Country Albums Chart.
Crowned one of CMT’s Next Women of Country, Ballerini has been on the rise with shout-outs from superstars Taylor Swift, Little Big Town, Kristian Bush and TODAY’s Hoda Kotb and landing on several 2015 “Ones to Watch” lists, including Billboard, Country Weekly, Rolling Stone Country, The Huffington Post, Radio.com, and Spotify.
Ballerini will be hitting the road this summer playing shows nationwide including major festivals, select stops on Lady Antebellum’s WHEELS UP Tour and headline club dates with her first New York City show at the Gramercy Theatre announced today (6/22).
THE FIRST TIME is available here.
Only 10 other solo females in country music have had their debut country singles go #1 on the Billboard Country Airplay Chart.
2006 – Carrie Underwood “Jesus Take The Wheel” *
2004 – Gretchen Wilson “Redneck Woman”
2001 – Jamie O’Neal “There is No Arizona”
2001 – Cyndi Thomson “What I Really Meant To Say”
1996 – Deana Carter “Strawberry Wine”
1993 – Faith Hill “Wild One”
1992 – Wynonna “She Is His Only Need”
1990 – Trisha Yearwood “She’s In Love With The Boy”
1973 – Marie Osmond “Paper Roses”
1964 – Connie Smith “Once A Day”
* Underwood’s debut single and #1 POP Hit “Inside Your Heaven,” was not released to country radio, but peaked at #52 on the Billboard Country Airplay Chart.