Chances are if you’re privy to country music you’ve heard the song “Girl in a Country Song” over the past few months. Maddie Marlow and Taylor Dye make up the hottest new duo in country music Maddie & Tae.
The teenagers from Ada, Oklahoma and Sugarland, Texas moved to Nashville a few years ago on advice from their vocal coach and since then have been making waves on the local scene. They recently signed with Dot Records, backed by the most powerful label (Big Machine) and CEO (Scott Borchetta) in country music. As they’ll tell you in their introduction video they weren’t supposed to splash onto the national scene this quickly. But sometimes, when you are sitting on a hit it’s a must.
Maddie & Tae released their first single “Girl in a Country Song” to radio on July 21st, but over the past week the song has rapidly gained traction. Currently sitting inside the top 15 on the iTunes charts and at number eight on the charts, it’s clear Maddie & Tae have a smash hit on their first release. The song will likely rise into the top five on the charts, if not number one, over the coming weeks due to the release of their debut EP on Tuesday. When it does the duo should be quick to thank Sirius XM The Highway who has pushed the song heavily. Combine that with a witty video that has caught the attention of morning programming across the country including two appearances on the Today Show; the duo has certainly been fortunate.
The question for Maddie & Tae is whether or not they’ll be able to parlay the success of “Girl in a Country Song” into further success. There’s no question the song is going to be an anthem for young female country fans everywhere. The song is catchy, basic, and upbeat; yet it’s witty message has struck a cord with the critics. Borchetta is convinced that he’s found the “next Taylor Swift” from a marketing perspective, but he should be careful when making such comparisons. Taylor Swift entered country music at the perfect time. Right when it was becoming more mainstream and crossover hits were beginning to become the norm. Swift was able to connect with the teenage girl demographic nearly instantly, and hasn’t let go ever since. Her music was, and still is, written for that age group. It’s unfair to Maddie & Tae to face Taylor Swift size expectations.
That hasn’t stopped Scott Borchetta from rushing the product. Their debut self-titled EP drops on Tuesday. Depending on the success an album could be released before summer rolls around. That’s a fast turn around for artists who were unsigned until June of this year. Even with endless coaching and support from some of the most talented producers, writers, and musicians in and around Nashville. Sure, Scott Borchetta has arguably the most successful track record in country music, but even for him this is risky. They’re young and relatively inexperienced.
Nonetheless, when their four song EP drops Tuesday we should have a significantly better idea of what to make of Maddie & Tae’s careers. Check back Tuesday for a full review of the EP.
Above photo via Maddie & Tae’s website.