by Cindy Watts
Before Keith Urban joined Taylor Swift in concert as her special guest in Toronto Friday night, he shared his jubilation over notching his 19th No. 1 song “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16.”
“Nineteen, unbelievable,” Urban said in a phone call to The Tennessean. “It feels exactly like it did when I got the first one. I guess it’s like panning for gold. I don’t imagine a prospector ever gets a lesser feeling striking gold. The odds are what they are and I guess for me, I either write a song or I find one, and I love it and I go in and record it and the rest is just up to the fates. Once I let it go, it’s completely out of my hands what happens to it.”
Urban played an acoustic version of “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16” at Country Radio Seminar for country radio programmers before it was released to
radio in February. The stripped down version received a standing ovation and the singer said he felt support for the song from country radio and from fans as it moved up the charts.
“This song, particularly, was really resonating with a lot of people,” Urban said. “I don’t know if it was (the) faith aspect of it. I’m sure that plays into it, too. It’s just the timing of having something like that was obviously good for a lot of people. For me, I was just thrilled with the song and hoped people would like it.”
Written by Shane McAnally, Ross Copperman and Josh Osborne, “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16” also made radio history last week. The song had the highest one-week spin count in Country Aircheck/Mediabase history.
“Amassing this many plays on country radio and this much audience for his latest single, is really a testament to Keith’s ability to keep his music important and relevant to people through the years,” said Lon Helton, co-host of the syndicated weekly radio show “Country Countdown USA.”
“Nineteen No. 1 songs spans a lot of years, and especially in recent years, country radio has had a huge influx of young listeners. So the ability to have your music resonate with this young audience while still being meaningful to the older listeners to country radio is a very difficult accomplishment. He is still at the top of his game.”
Urban performed “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16” and past hit “Somebody Like You” with Swift Friday night.
originally published by the Tennessean