Garth Brooks Returns to Top Album Spot

Tim McGraw Has No. 1 Song for Second Week

Garth Brooks’ Man Against Machine reclaims its penthouse perch on Billboard’s country albums chart this week, while Tim McGraw’s “Shotgun Rider” maintains its primacy on the country airplay songs chart for the second round in a row.

What with all the holiday hubbub, the latest charts are fairly turgid, admitting only one new album and three new songs.

Craig Wayne Boyd’s The Voice: The Complete Season 7 Collection makes its chart debut at No. 35. Returning to action are Rosanne Cash’s The River & the Thread (No. 47), Parmalee’s Feels Like Carolina (No. 48) and Johnny Cash’s Out Among the Stars (No. 50).

The new tunes are all Christmas fare — and thus destined to melt quickly. They are Kenny Chesney’s “Christmas in Blue Chair Bay” (No. 55), Jerrod Niemann’s “Holly Jolly Christmas” (No. 57) and Darius Rucker’s “What God Wants for Christmas” (No. 58).

The No. 2 through No. 5 albums, in that order, are Carrie Underwood’s Greatest Hits: Decade #1 (last week’s No. 1), Jason Aldean’s Old Boots, New Dirt, Florida Georgia Line’s Anything Goes and George Strait’s The Cowboy Rides Away: Live at AT&T Stadium.

Rounding out the Top 5 songs array are Brad Paisley’s “Perfect Storm,” Chesney’s “Til It’s Gone,” Underwood’s “Something in the Water” and Eric Church’s “Talladega.”

Final voting is now underway for the 2015 Grammy awards, the next big institutional boost to music buying. Winners will be announced on the CBS-TV special on Feb. 8.

In the meantime, here’s hoping you have an exceedingly tuneful New Year.

Edward Morris is a veteran of country music journalism. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee, and is a frequent contributor to CMT.com.