Cole Swindell visited the MusicRow offices recently to accept MusicRow‘s first Challenge Coin which is given to artists and songwriters who earn a No. 1 song on MusicRow‘s Country Breakout chart. Established in 2002, the MusicRow chart provides airplay measurement from approximately 100 secondary country radio markets across the United States. The Challenge Coin was created in 2014 and each coin is uniquely numbered. Swindell and fellow songwriter Shane Minor co-wrote “Chillin’ It,” which garnered Swindell his first chart-topping song on MusicRow‘s CountryBreakout chart.
“This has been such an incredible year,” says Swindell. “To have my first No. 1 song is incredible. I’ve always wanted to be an artist and to see my songs top the charts, so this means a lot. To get the first-ever MusicRow Challenge Coin is awesome.” The Georgia native spent much of 2013 opening up for buddy and fellow Georgian Luke Bryan on Bryan’s Dirt Road Diaries Tour and Farm Tour.
For those who are unfamiliar, challenge coins celebrate distinguished individuals, and the challenge coin term and tradition is believed to date back to WWI, when they were initially given to American soldiers. Varying accounts exist, but the most common story behind the coin’s name is as follows. After receiving a challenge coin, organization members carried it with them at all times. When challenged to prove membership, they would produce it to verify their membership status. Some stories add if the member couldn’t produce the coin, they had to buy the challenger(s) a drink and vice versa.
Although challenge coins carry a strong military background, they have been awarded to individuals in other spheres, including film, science and music. Each week, MusicRow will honor the industry’s brightest players, awarding challenge coins to artists and songwriters who have earned a No. 1 song on MusicRow’s CountryBreakout Chart, beginning with the first MusicRow Chart in 2014.
Swindell’s self-titled debut album will be released Feb. 18 on Warner Bros. Records.
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