Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde’s ‘Never Wanted To Be That Girl’ Is the Second Female Duet In 30 Years To Reach No.1

Carly Pearce, Ashley McBryde; Photo Courtesy CMA
Carly Pearce, Ashley McBryde; Photo Courtesy CMA
Carly Pearce, Ashley McBryde; Photo Courtesy CMA

Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde officially have the No.1 song in country music this week as their emotional collaboration, “Never Wanted To Be That Girl,” reached the top spot on both the  Billboard and Mediabase/Country Aircheck charts.

The song, co-written by Pearce and McBryde with Shane McAnally, is the second female duet to top the charts in 30 years. It marks Pearce’s third No. 1 single and McBryde’s first. 

Upon hearing the news, both artists took to social media to express their gratitude and reflect on the song. 

“When @ashleymcbryde and I were writing “Never Wanted To Be That Girl” with @shanemcanally, we were just in the moment, thinking about the women we want to be and the way that’s not always how life and love turn out. But nobody ever paused long enough to think about having a #1 record or winning an Academy of Country Music Award. We wanted to shake off an honest mistake, and now here we are with the No. 1 song at Country radio and the ACM trophy for Music Event of the Year,” Pearce shared. 

She went on to point out, “sometimes out of something bad comes something good.”

After thanking country radio, fans and their respective teams, Carly Pearce shared a sweet message for McBryde. 

“Ashley, I am so proud to call you my friend, my sister and I will forever be grateful for this song bringing us together. Gonna go cry for the 100th time! ♥” 

McBryde reflected on the moment on social media as well, writing, “First times only happen once. I’ll always remember I was in Leeds, England when I got the news. I’ll always love that Carly and I got to ride this rocket of a song together. I’ll always love that she, Shane and I trusted each other and ourselves to be brutally honest when we wrote it. It doesn’t get a whole lot better than that.” 

“Never Wanted To Be That Girl” appears on Carly Pearce’s 2021 project, 29: Written In Stone.

“Just thinking about how this song even came to be: I had an idea to have Ashley on a song and she was on board,” Pearce shared with her label. “And just to see what it’s done and the stories that we’ve heard, and to be two women to get a number one – it’s Ashley’s first, which I think is really awesome, and I’m so happy for her. And this is the kind of music that I want to write and I want to sing, and to see it do what it’s done at radio makes me really proud.”

The superstars brought the song to life with high-profile performances, including the 55th Annual CMA Awards and 57th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards.

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