For the first time since Shania Twain dominated three Christmas seasons in a row with her mega-selling Come On Over, an album from the previous year has completely schooled all the 2006 releases at retail. Carrie Underwood moved a shocking 292,000 units of Some Hearts in the week before Christmas, pushing cumulative sales for the project to 4,586,750, with still one more week to be tabulated from 2006. Try to get your head around this: Some of the biggest stars in the genre released new albums in 2006, some right before the Christmas season. Rascal Flatts, Dixie Chicks, Toby Keith, Keith Urban, Sugarland, George Strait, Dierks Bentley, Tim McGraw and Alan Jackson all hit stores with projects that have sold pretty well.
Crunching the Numbers
Over the past few years, with the establishment of iTunes and other online music stores, more music fans are getting their fix digitally than ever before. However, much like country consumers held on to the cassette format long after most music buyers had switched to CD, the digital boom has been impacting country music more slowly than other genres. That’s not to say some country artists aren’t making out like bandits. When looking over the top 200 digital songs and digital albums to date, a lot of country names pop up. Top 200 Digital Songs of All-Time 48. “Bless the Broken Road” – Rascal Flatts (747,496) 63. “Life is a Highway” – Rascal Flatts (644,082) 68. “Jesus, Take the Wheel” – Carrie Underwood (631,489) 69. “Save a Horse (Ride a Cowboy) – Big & Rich (629,021) 73. “What Hurts the Most” – Rascal Flatts (611,239) 105. “Live Like You Were Read More
Perusing the SoundScan totals for country albums makes all of those mergers and layoffs seem a lot more understandable. Wow, the market is weak. Even Entertainer of the Year nominees are having a hard time breaking the million mark. Here are the totals for the most recent albums by country artists, with the weeks released included to give a sense of how long it took to reach those marks. The albums are ranked by total sales to date. Here are the only current albums to scan over a million units: 1. Shania Twain Greatest Hits (84 weeks) 3.46 million 2. Carrie Underwood Some Hearts (31 weeks) 3.16 million 3. Keith Urban Be Here (91 weeks) 3.04 million 4. Kenny Chesney Road & The Radio (33 weeks) 2.31 million 5. Sugarland Twice The Speed of Life (86 weeks) 1.97 million 6. Rascal Flatts Me & My Gang (11 weeks) 1.88 million Read More