We are at the end of 2017, which means it’s time to countdown the Top 40 country music albums to be released over the course of the past year!
Below includes a list of the 40 albums that stood out the most to me and for my personal tastes in 2017. From our favorite legacy artists of the 90’s like Wade Hayes and Sammy Kershaw, those keeping the outlaw sound alive like Colter Wall and Tyler Childers to legends such as Marty Stuart and Willie Nelson and artists of today in Luke Combs and Ruthie Collins, all facets are covered.
Make sure to leave feedback in the comments section to let me know what you think I got right and what I maybe left off of the list. Keep in mind, this list is based solely on my own taste and may not reflect yours. Let’s keep it civil!
Garth Brooks – The Anthology, Vol. 1
Looking at the entire package that is The Anthology, Vol. 1, I truly hope that this becomes a trend throughout county music as I would love to see as much detail go into books covering the early days of Alan Jackson, Marty Stuart, George Strait, Reba and so many others. The book is a beautiful work of art and is jammed packed with incredible photos from the first five years of Garth’s career. Not to mention, the package includes 5 compact disc of music featuring outtakes, demos and more. Being that the book is the true main event here is the only reason that this didn’t make the official list.
Reba McEntire – Sing It Now: Songs Of Faith And Hope
I know I’m gonna hear about this one not making the cut below. Reba is of course one of the most iconic artists in all of country music. Sing It Now is her first full gospel album to be released over her long and incredible career, but I just don’t find myself returning to gospel records over and over. Reba sounds fantastic as ever and I can’t wait until she releases her next studio album. I’ll be all over it.
BORN COUNTRY’s Top 40 COUNTRY ALBUMS OF 2017, #40-36
#40 Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers – “The Long-Awaited Album”
Yes, THAT Steve Martin. This is the third outing for Martin and The Steep Canyon Rangers and they just keep getting better and better. “The Long-Awaited Album” features only limited vocals from Martin in this go-around, but the banjo picking is definitely at its finest.
Standout Tracks: “Caroline, “Office Supplies,” “Angeline The Barista”
#39 Tim McGraw And Faith Hill – The Rest Of Our Life
Tim McGraw and Faith Hill are hands down one of the most beloved couples in all of country music. With duets like “Let’s Make Love,” “Meanwhile Back At Mama’s,” and “It’s Your Love,” it was always assumed that the two would come together for an entire duets album in due time. While meeting the expectations of fans who had been listening to the above mentioned hits would seem nearly impossible, Tim and Faith have assembled a strong collection of songs that are sure to please both artists’ massive loyal followings.
Standout Tracks: “The Rest Of Our Life,” “The Bed We Made,” “Devil Callin’ Me Back”
#38 Ruthie Collins – Get Drunk And Cry
Women’s presence on country music radio outside of Miranda, Carrie and a few others is incredibly minimal these days. There are so many talents out there making really great music and the fact Ruthie Collins is not yet blowing up the charts is definitely further proof that something needs to be done. I have a feeling that 2018 is going to be Ruthie’s year!
Standout Tracks: “Get Drunk And Cry,” “Me And Emmylou,” “Getting Out There”
#37 Joe Nichols – Never Gets Old
Joe Nichols has been releasing some of the most consistently solid albums in country music since the early 2000’s. How Nichols is not at the same level as those artists headlining amphitheater shows around the world is mind boggling to me. Joe’s newest outing, Never Gets Old, features more of the same great radio ready country music that we have come to expect from him. Also, have you ever wondered what Sir Mix-A-Lot’s “Baby Got Back” would sound like as a country song? Joe has you covered.
Standout Tracks: “Never Gets Old,” “Diamonds Make Babies,” “Baby Got Back”
#36 Whitney Rose – Rule 62
If you heard the latest album from Whitney Rose without knowing that it was released in 2017, you could easily believe that Rule 62 may have been sitting on record store shelves with Loretta, Dolly and Emmylou back in the 70’s.
Standout Tracks: “Trucker’s Funeral,” “Can’t Stop Shaking’,” “I Don’t Half (I Just Want Out)”