2018 is a wrap, and we sold plenty of records in this wild and weird year. We’ll be spending the next few weeks reviewing our best sellers of the recently completed calendar year. Check out our best-selling country records of the year:
10. DOLLY PARTON JOLENE
Dolly has been enjoying an extended renaissance among the younger generations. For good reason, beyond just being an EXCELLENT singer and songwriter, she was the prototype of the independent minded strong woman striving on the tilted field of the music industry. Also ‘Jolene’ is one of the best country songs ever.
9. WILLIE NELSON LAST MAN STANDING
No slowing down for Willie! The 85 year old managed to crank out his 67th full length record of his storied career in 2018. Naturally a bit reflective, one of our greatest songwriters ruminates on a lot of life lived.
8. STURGILL SIMPSON METAMODERN SOUNDS IN COUNTRY MUSIC
People are still discovering Sturgill’s 2014 breakthrough which helped open a new lane in country music in the 21st century. (I’d say a lot of the records higher on this very list owe this record a debt!) Still sounds great. If you haven’t heard, give it a shot, it manages a timelessness for a contemporary record.
7. STURGILL SIMPSON A SAILOR'S GUIDE TO EARTH
And here’s Sturgill’s 2016 record where he stepped out and tried something totally new. More soul inflected and a little bit odder, its another stellar LP made for repeat listens.
6. JOHNNY CASH ESSENTIAL
Duh. Johnny Cash is country. This best of is a great starting point. If you’re collecting records ‘efficienly’ there is no more bang for your buck in a country record than the best of the man in black.
5. MARGO PRICE ALL AMERICAN MADE
This one was released in late 2017 by Third Man Records, and as they say in the industry, it had legs. It’s a world weary record looking out at America with enough hints of darkness to make it a fascinating listen.
4. CHRIS STAPLETON FROM A ROOM: V. 2
The first Chris Stapleton record in our top ten of three. And you see what number we’re at. This guy is ruling country music nowadays! Rightfully so, he makes great sounding records full of great classic country songs.
3. CHRIS STAPLETON FROM A ROOM: V. 1
More of that!
2. CHRIS STAPLETON TRAVELLER
And his 2015 debut continues to outpace his newer records. It’s about as close to a consensus masterpiece as country-music has in this decade. It’s been one of our best selling country records every year since its release, and our people have great taste. An essential.
1. KACEY MUSGRAVES GOLDEN HOUR
2018’s number one country record at Sonic Boom is actually a 2018 record! This one was initially really divisive at the shop, though really grew on a lot of us! (It’s in Jake’s top-ten!) She grew up from her retro sound, incorporating a little modern pop, and upping the ante on her songcraft as well. Congrats Kacey!