The best country albums cover many decades and styles of country music. The men and women who created these albums set the template for all country acts that followed. Whether these musicians sang about being a “Coal Miner’s Daughter” or performed in front of inmates at a prison, their albums are the best that country music has to offer.
- “At Folsom Prison” Johnny Cash Johnny Cash released one of the best country albums in 1968, a live performance at Folsom County Prison. Cash released “Folsom County Blues” thirteen years before his appearance at the prison. Top songs in the concert include “Folsom County Blues” and “Green, Green Grass of Home.”
- “Coal Miner’s Daughter” Loretta Lynn Loretta Lynn released “Coal Miner’s Daughter” in 1970. Despite the album only featuring one single, the title track, it still reached number one on the Billboard Country Albums Chart. The album became one of the best country albums, reaching Gold, Lynn’s third album in a row to reach that level.
- “No Fences” Garth Brooks In terms of album sales alone, Garth Brooks is the most successful country singer of all time. His second album, “No Fences,” remains one of the best country albums of all time. The album includes “Friends in Low Places,” “The Thunder Rolls” and “Unanswered Prayers.”
- “The Gambler” Kenny Rogers Kenny Rogers's sixth studio album and his most popular album, remains one of the best country albums of all time. The album became a movie and produced the most famous Kenny Rogers song of all time: “The Gambler.”
- “Always On My Mind” Willie Nelson “Always On My Mind” was released in 1982 by and went Platinum four times. This was the best-selling album Nelson ever released. One of the best country albums of all time, the title track is a cover of an Elvis Presley song and hit number one, earning Nelson three Grammys.
- “Killin' Time” Clint Black This 1989 debut album for country singer Clint Black had four singles that hit number one on the country charts, making it one of the best country albums of all time. Two songs off the album won Best Song of the Year: “A Better Man” in 1989 and “Nobody’s Home” in 1990.
- “Always and Forever” Randy Travis Randy Travis’s 1989 album spawned four number one singles, making it one of the best country albums of the ‘80s. The album was Randy Travis’s second effort and featured hits like “Forever and Ever, Amen” and “I Told You So.”
- “Beyond the Blue Neon” George Strait George Strait’s twelfth album, released in 1989, remains one of the best country albums ever made. Three number one singles came from the effort, including “Baby’s Gotten Good at Goodbye,” “Ace in the Hole” and “What’s Going On in Your World.”
- “Born to Boogie” Hank Williams Jr. “Born to Boogie” was released in 1987 and reached Platinum status, while sitting at number one on the Billboard charts. It remains one of the best country albums and includes hit songs like “Young Country” and covers of “Honky Tonk Woman” and “Keep Your Hands to Yourself.”
- “Come on Over” Shania Twain Shania Twain’s third studio album is the best-selling album of all time for a woman in any musical genre. It is certified twenty-times Platinum and features an astonishing twelve singles, making it one of the best country albums ever sold.
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