Lindsay Ell Celebrates Brantley Gilbert Duet, 'What Happens in a Small Town' Becoming Her First No. 1

When Brantley Gilbert asked Lindsay Ell to sing with him on the heartbreaking duet, "What Happens in a Small Town," Ell likely had no idea the song would become her first No. 1 hit in the United States! Ell, who previously had a chart-topping song, "Criminal," in her native Canada, is celebrating the song's success, which she admits was a long time coming.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Lindsay Ell (@lindsayell) on

"Y’all. This is a moment I have been waiting for since I was a little girl," Ell posted on social media. "So many nights I have gone to sleep praying to be able to celebrate a #1 song like this. To be a part of this record and to work with such an incredible team of hard working people.....I’m so grateful. [Brantley Gilbert] thank you for asking me to be a part of this song."

Ell went on to thank several other people who made helped propel "What Happens in a Small Town" to the top, before praising country radio for believing in the song.

"And THANK YOU COUNTRY RADIO for making this possible," she concluded. "Y’all have believed in me from the moment I signed my first record deal 7 years ago, and I could not be more grateful to you all. Brantley, we did it!!!!"

"What Happens in a Small Town" also helped Ell celebrate another first – her first ever CMA Awards nomination, for Musical Event of the Year.

“It’s our first nomination since 2012 but it’s Lindsay’s first," Gilbert shared with his record label. "And partnering with her on this song has been absolutely amazing. Seeing how hard she works, and right now is hard times for women in our genre, frankly. I love to see awesome things happening for any female in our genre, but especially Lindsay.

"Being as close as I’ve been able to be with her and seeing how hard she grinds just makes it that much more special," he added. "I think I’m probably more excited for her, well, definitely, than I am for me.”

Ell just dropped her new single, "I Don't Love You," which might touch on her former relationship with Bobby Bones.


The 2019 CMA Awards will air live from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 13, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Photo Credit: Getty / Suzi Pratt