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Stapleton, Rhett remain locked at the top

Thursday, February 18, 2016 – Thomas Rhett continues to be happy - at least when it comes to the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. That's because "Die a Happy Man" remains number one for the week ending Feb. 27. And fellow chart topper Chris Stapleton stays first on the Top Country Albums chart with "Traveller."

In fact, the first six positions on the songs chart were the same. Sam Hunt was second with "Break Up in a Small Town." Luke Bryan's "Home Alone Tonight," featuring Karen Fairchild, was third. Granger Smith held onto fourth with "Backroad Song" and Cole Swindell fifth with "You Should Be Here." "Heartbeat" from Carrie Underwood was sixth.

Kelsea Ballerini jumped from 11 to 7 with "Dibs," her second hit single. Chase Rice debuted at 17 with "Whisper." Dan + Shay were at 23 in their first week with "From the Ground Up." Dustin Lynch closed out the top 25 with "Mind Reader," up 3.

On the albums chart, Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum debuted in second with his first solo disc, "The Driver." Hunt was third with "Montevallo," Rhett fourth with "Tangled Up" and Underwood fifth with "Storyteller." Chris Janson's "Buy Me a Boat" moved up 4 places to 20th. Ballerini's "The First Time" went from 29 to 24.

On the Bluegrass Albums chart, Sierra Hull was again first with "Weighted Mind." The Infamous Stringdusters debuted in second with "Ladies & Gentlemen." Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn were third with their self-titled debut. Virginia singer Dori Freeman debuted in fourth with her self-titled release, one ahead of Freakwater's "Scheherazade," which also made its debut.

On the overall top 200 chart, Stapleton was 11th, Hunt 23rd, Rhett 34th, Kelley 35th and Bryan 49th. The country and top 200 charts use different criteria.

More news for Chris Stapleton

CD reviews for Chris Stapleton

From A Room: Volume 2 CD review - From A Room: Volume 2
There is no bigger artist in country music today, perhaps even in American music, than Chris Stapleton. His appeal reaches beyond just the commercial country fans for his gritty bluesy approach. 2015's "Traveller" set a high bar, which was met by this year's release of "From A Room: Volume 1," which won Album of the Year in the 51st CMA Awards. Stapleton also garnered the Male Vocalist of the Year for his second time. Now seven months after that release, "From »»»
Traveller CD review - Traveller
Chris Stapleton is one of those artists you've heard without ever realizing it. That's because of his acclaim as a songwriter with such hits as Luke Bryan's "Drink a Beer," Josh Turner's "Your Man," Darius Rucker's "Come Back Song" and Kenny Chesney's "Never Wanted Nothing More." He also had a successful stint as lead singer of the driving bluegrass band The SteelDrivers (Adele recorded one of their songs, which he co-wrote as »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: With or without band, Isbell satisfies – Usually, when an artist performs without his regular backing band, it becomes about mathematics of subtraction. That artist is armed with far fewer artistic weapons at his/her disposal, after all. In Jason Isbell's case, though, when he performed with just his wife and fiddler Amanda Shires, it was more about substitution than subtraction.... »»»
Concert Review: Grammy nominations aside, Yola, Kiah are the real deal – Grammy nominations do not make the artist, but Yola and opener Amythyst Kiah underscored time and again on this night that the honors were well deserved. In fact, Yola and Kiah's other group, Our Native Daughters, are nominated in the same category - Best American Roots. Yola has three other nominations as well. The clear winners... »»»
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