Country star Sam Hunt has overtaken Florida Georgia Line for holding the record number of weeks atop Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart with his single “Body Like a Back Road.”
And there are no signs of slowing down.
Record label MCA Nashville said Monday that Hunt’s single has hit 25 consecutive weeks at the top of the chart, which measures radio play, sales and streaming, and edged out “Cruise,” which reigned for 24 weeks in 2012 and 2013.
The song, already certified multiplatinum, crossed over to the pop charts as well and jumped into the top 10 of the Hot 100 all-genre chart. Hunt, whose debut album “Montevallo” came out in 2014, wrote the song with Zach Crowell, Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne.
The inspiration for the snappy and infectiously melodic song came from Hunt’s wife, Hannah, McAnally said.
“It was a playful ode to her,” McAnally said. “He had written a lot of serious stuff about the tumultuous part of their relationship and I think he just wanted to say that they were in a good place.”
Florida Georgia Line’s “Cruise” benefited from having a remix released with rapper Nelly that helped it further crossover to new audiences. But McAnally thinks “Back Road” has dominated this summer because Hunt has taken his time in releasing new music.
It’s the stand-alone single for Hunt this year, with no announced date of when his sophomore album may drop.
“It raced up the charts so fast that had he put another song out, it may not have seen this growth,” McAnally said.
Other top singles in the history of the Hot Country Songs chart include “Walk On By,” a song by Leroy Van Dyke, which hit No. 1 in 1961 and stayed there for 19 weeks, according to Billboard. Florida Georgia Line scored another big hit with last year’s “H.O.L.Y.,” which topped the chart for 18 weeks.
McAnally said he can pinpoint the moment he knew Hunt had the “song of the summer.”
“This summer a boat went by me many times playing ‘Body Like a Back Road,’ so I feel like that is the indicator,” McAnally said.