CMT News

Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, O Brother Pace 2001 Releases
Jackson Hits No. 1 in Six Weeks
Garth Brooks and the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack end the year at No. 1 and No. 2 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, and Tim McGraw is the year's dominant chart artist as 2001 winds down.

Billboard's final Top Country Albums chart of 2001 shows Brooks' Scarecrow and O Brothercontinuing to dominate country albums sales. Toby Keith's platinum selling Pull My Chain finishes at No. 3, George Strait's The Road Less Traveled is at No. 4 and Martina McBride's Greatest Hits ends the year at No. 5.

Alan Jackson's "Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)" knocks Keith's "I Wanna Talk About Me" out of the top spot and down to No. 2 on the Billboard year-ending Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart. Jackson's single -- in ascending to No. 1 in just six weeks -- becomes the first single to hit No. 1 that fast since Brooks' "Longneck Bottle" in 1997.

Strait's "Run" finishes at No. 3 on the singles chart, Aaron Tippin's "Where the Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly" is at No. 4 and newcomer Steve Holy's "Good Morning Beautiful" climbs to No. 5. Debuting on the chart are Ray Stevens' "Osama-Yo'-Mama" at No. 48, Kenny Chesney's "Young" at No. 50, Ty Herndon's "Heather's Wall" at No. 53 and Tim Rushlow's "Love, Will (The Package)" at No. 60.

Billboard's chart summaries for the entire year list the following leaders (eligibility period dating from Dec. 2, 2000, to Nov. 24, 2001):

• Top Country Artist: Tim McGraw
• Top Country Artist -- Female: Sara Evans
• Top Country Artist -- Male: Tim McGraw
• Top New Country Artist: Jamie O'Neal
• Top Country Album Artist: Tim McGraw
• Top Hot Country Singles & Tracks Artist: Tim McGraw
• Top Country Singles Sales Artist: LeAnn Rimes
• Top Country Album: Greatest Hits, Tim McGraw
• Top Hot Country Singles & Tracks: "Ain't Nothing 'Bout You," Brooks & Dunn
• Top Country Label: Curb Records

The RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) year-end wrapup shows Brooks' Scarecrow with sales already over 3 million copies -- as the top-selling country album of 2001. Brooks' Double Live album sold an additional million copies this year, upping Brooks' cumulative sales figure to more that 104 million units.

RIAA figures show O Brother to be the top-selling soundtrack album of the year, with sales topping 3 million copies.

In December, Billy Gilman earned his first RIAA multi-platinum certification for his One Voice, with sales topping 2 million. Earning their first platinum plaques were Gary Allan for Smoke Rings in the Dark and Montgomery Gentry for Tattoos & Scars.

Strait received his 28th gold RIAA award for The Road Less Traveled, and Reba McEntire got her 21st gold certification for Greatest Hits, Vol. 3: I'm a Survivor. Lee Ann Womack earned her first gold single award for "I Hope You Dance."
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