WORDS ABOUT 'WORDS' On Top Country Albums, which Chris Stapleton's From A Room: Volume 1 leads for an eighth week (13,000 equivalent album units, down 17 percent), Sara Evans arrives for the first time since 2014, as her new LP Words starts at No. 4 (11,000).
The 14-song Words, which features at least one female co-writer on every track, is Evans' first album of new material since Slow Me Down, which debuted and peaked at No. 2 on March 29, 2014 (with 27,000 in first-week sales). Words is her seventh Top Country Albums top 10, a sum that includes two No. 1s.
Also on Top Country Albums, singer-songwriter Lucas Hoge makes his first Billboard album chart appearance, as Dirty South debuts at No. 12 (7,000). Originally from Nebraska and now living in Nashville, Hoge has been recording independently since 2002.
NEW TOP 10s Kane Brown's "What Ifs," featuring Lauren Alaina, rises 11-10 on Hot Country Songs, marking Brown's first top 10 on the tally. The track surges 8-3 on Country Digital Song Sales (16,000 sold, up 13 percent); bullets at No. 4 on Country Streaming Songs (7 million U.S. streams, up 2 percent); and lifts 20-18 on Country Airplay (16 million in audience, up 18 percent).
"What Ifs" is Alaina's second Hot Country Songs top 10, following "Road Less Travelled," which reached No. 8 (and became her first No. 1 on Country Airplay) in April.
Plus, Dustin Lynch's "Small Town Boy" climbs 12-10 on Country Airplay (31 million, up 13 percent), becoming his sixth top 10, a total that includes four No. 1s: "Seein' Red" (Feb. 25); "Mind Reader" (June 4, 2016); "Hell of a Night" (Sept. 19, 2015); and "Where It's At (Yep, Yep)" (Sept. 27 and Oct. 4, 2014). On Hot Country Songs, "Town" nudges to a new high (7-5).
MEMORABLE START "Unforgettable," the second single from Thomas Rhett's album Life Changes, due Sept. 8, makes the Country Airplay chart's highest entrance, launching at No. 33 with 5.4 million first-week impressions. It follows the Country Airplay leader "Craving You, featuring Maren Morris, which last month became Rhett's eighth No. 1 on the list and Morris' first.