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Taylor Swift Returns to No. 1 on Country Songs Chart

The Associated Press, Friday, January 4, 2013, 4:01pm (PST)

Billboard -- After bridging decades of chart history with nine weeks at No. 1 on Country Songs late last year, a holiday-driven digital surge for Taylor Swift 's "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" returns the song to the summit for a 10th week, thus extending its historic reach to nearly 50 years.

No song has stacked double-digit weeks atop the chart since Buck Owens posted an October-to-February run of 16 weeks in 1963-64 with "Love's Gonna Live Here." As previously noted, Swift's chart-topping run is an all-time record among women in the chart's 69-year history, surpassing Connie Smith's eight weeks with "Once a Day" in 1964. Swift's ninth and tenth weeks at No. 1 were interrupted by a three-week run for Florida Georgia Line's "Cruise," which is pushed to No. 2.

Up 185,000 downloads (366%) during the December 24-30 Nielsen SoundScan tracking week, Swift's single sells 236,000 and vaults 5-1 on Country Digital Songs. With 10 cumulative weeks atop that chart, "Never" becomes the artist's longest-running leader, followed by nine weeks at No. 1 with "Mine" in 2010.

'RED' ALL OVER: Concurrently, Swift's "Red" album notches a seventh nonconsecutive week atop the Billboard 200, selling 241,000 (down 12%). The set has now spent 10 straight weeks at No. 1 on Country Albums. Swift's 24th career week at No.1 on the Billboard 200 ties her with Adele as the woman with the most weeks at the summit during the SoundScan era, which began in 1991.

HELLO 'GOODBYE': The Country Airplay list is topped this week by Zac Brown Band's "Goodbye In Her Eyes," which steps 2-1 in its 16th chart week. That's the group's ninth career leader and it's first since "Keep Me In Mind" spent four weeks at No. 1 in December/January 2011-12. The band's new No. 1 is its seventh this decade, and places the group in a tie with Blake Shelton for the most leaders during that time. "Goodbye" peaked at No. 5 on the December 22 Country Songs chart, where it currently ranks at No. 10.

Related article on Billboard.com:

Taylor Swift's 'Red,' 'Les Mis' Soundtrack Lead Billboard 200 Chart

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Find more online: Billboard.com

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