When it comes to aggressively promoting his new albums, George Strait seldom breaks a sweat. And why should he? His new album, Somewhere Down in Texas, just became his 20th release to debut at No. 1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart.
and his new project is also debuting at the top of the Billboard 200 chart, a list otherwise regarded as the pop chart.
According to Nielsen SoundScan, Somewhere Down in Texas, the 33rd album of Strait's career, sold 245,000 copies in
its first week of release to end a three-week reign by Coldplay's new album, X&Y.
Strait's presence on the
country chart bumped other top sellers down one position. In second through fifth place, respectively, are Toby Keith's Honkytonk
University, Rascal Flatts' Feels Like Today, Keith Urban's Be Here and Sugarland's Twice the Speed of
Life. The self-titled album by Hot Apple Pie, the new band featuring former Little Texas member Brady Seals, made an impressive
debut by entering the chart at No. 6. The new albums from Strait and Hot Apple Pie moved two titles down two slots each: Keith's
Greatest Hits 2 (to No. 7) and Kenny Chesney's When the Sun Goes Down (to No. 8). With Big & Rich's Horse
of a Different Color at No. 9, their MuzikMafia accomplice, Gretchen Wilson, rounds out the Top 10 with Here for the
The only other album hitting the country charts this week is Gettin' More Rowdy, a compilation of
time-tested classics from Dwight Yoakam, Travis Tritt, Hank Williams Jr. and others.
On Billboard's country
singles chart, Rascal Flatts' "Fast Cars and Freedom" stays at No. 1 for a third week, but Keith's "As Good As I Once Was"
continues to flex its muscle at No. 2 with a significant increase in radio airplay. At No. 3, Sugarland continues to show
momentum by climbing one notch with "Something More." Strait's "You'll Be There" also rises one rung to No. 4. Urban's recent
No. 1, "Making Memories of Us," slips to No. 5, while Faith Hill's "Mississippi Girl" climbs to No. 6 and Chesney's "Keg in
the Closet" is still flowing with a jump to No. 7. If you're into predicting future No. 1 singles, keep an eye on Keith Anderson's
"Pickin' Wildflowers" (blooming upward four spaces to No. 8) and Brooks & Dunn's "Play Something Country" (ascending four
slots to No. 9). Darryl Worley's "If Something Should Happen" is at No. 10.
The hottest chart debut of the week is
"Our America." The patriotic recording featuring Gretchen Wilson, Big & Rich and Cowboy Troy arrives at No. 44. Other
debuts include Dwight Yoakam's "International Heartache" (No. 55), all-girl band Cowboy Crush's "Nobody Ever Died of a Broken
Heart" (No. 56) and newcomer Jace Everett's "That's the Kind of Love I'm In."