Country Charts Are Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Martina McBride, Brad Paisley, Kenny Rogers Get Into the Holiday Mood

The world’s glaciers may be melting, but Billboard‘s country charts are frozen solid — at least at the summit. The Top 5 singles are exactly the same songs in the same places as they were last week, and there’s only one very minor variation among the Top 5 album rankings.

As expected, however, there’s an upsurge in Christmas music activity. Two of the four new singles this week are Yuletide-centered, including Martina McBride’s in vitro collaboration with the late Dean Martin on “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” which comes on at No. 58. Brad Paisley’s homage to his old pal Buck Owens, “Santa Looked a Lot Like Daddy,” enters at No. 59.

Albumwise, Elvis Presley’s Elvis Christmas climbs from No. 34 to No. 21 in sales, while the Kenny Rogers Christmas Collection bows in at No. 68.

Carrie Underwood continues her reign on the singles chart with “Before He Cheats.” Trailing just behind are Rascal Flatts’ “My Wishes” (No. 2), Sugarland’s “Want To” (No. 3), Kenny Chesney’s “You Save Me” (No. 4) and Tim McGraw’s “My Little Girl” (No. 5).

The album-master remains Keith Urban, whose Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing shimmers at No. 1 for a third week. Underwood’s Some Hearts and Sugarland’s Enjoy the Ride swap the positions they held last week and now stand at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. Rascal Flatts’ Me and My Gang remains at No. 4 and George Strait’s It Just Comes Natural at No. 5.

The highest-debuting album this period is The Legend of Johnny Cash, Vol. II, which parts the curtain at No. 28. Also new is Darryl Worley’s Here and Now, arriving at No. 35. Making the greatest leap is Randy Travis’ Glory Train: Songs of Faith, Worship and Praise. It soars from No. 67 to No. 40.

Underwood has the top-debuting single with “Wasted,” which logs in at No. 57. The remaining new-on is Gary Nichols’ “I Can’t Love You Anymore,” edging in at No. 60. Urban’s “Stupid Boy” is also a fast boy, racing from No. 38 to No. 28.

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