Chart Beat

Josh Turner's Faith-Based 'I Serve a Savior' Debuts, Dan + Shay, Maren Morris Go Top 10 on Country Charts

Josh Turner
Michael Gomez  

Josh Turner

Josh Turner's first faith-based set, I Serve a Savior bows at No. 2 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart (dated Nov. 10) with 15,000 equivalent album units (14,000 in traditional album sales) in the week ending Nov. 1, according to Nielsen Music.

Savior also arrives at No. 2 on Top Christian Albums, marking the singer-songwriter's first appearance on the tally.

"I'm floored. God is good," Turner tells Billboard. "I had no expectations going into this project, other than to make a record I was proud to share. I'm especially thankful my fans have embraced it. I want [listeners] to feel some hope and joy that maybe they've never experienced before, even if they don't understand where it's coming from exactly. I'd love for them to seek out truth."

The 12-song Savior, Turner's seventh studio set, marks his eighth Top Country Albums top 10 (encompassing his seven LPs and a live release), a sum that includes three No. 1s. Before Savior, Deep South debuted at No. 1 on the chart dated April 1, 2017. Turner has also led with Punching Bag in 2012 and sophomore album Your Man in 2006. Turner's debut LP, Long Black Train, peaked at No. 3 in 2004.

While Savior is Turner's first full-fledged Christian-based album, he's no stranger to inspirational songs. "Long Black Train," his second Hot Country Songs entry, and "Me and God" (which hit Nos. 13 and 16 in 2004 and 2007, respectively), appear in updated versions on the new set.

The bulk of the album features traditional hymns, with which Turner became familiar while growing up in South Carolina, including "How Great Thou Art" (featuring Sonya Isaacs), "Amazing Grace" and "Great Is Thy Faithfulness," plus the iconic "I Saw the Light," penned by Hank Williams.

The title song, which Turner co-wrote in 2016, led to the creation of the set. "The thought of doing this album hadn't even come to me yet, and I was still working on Deep South at the time," mused Turner. "When it came time to actually record 'Savior,' I wanted it to feel new, but also have the feel of an old-time hymn. As things progressed, I wanted it to be the title track.

"Everything just kind of fell into place. I felt like it was my time and, more importantly, that it was God's time."

NEW TOP 10s On Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, which combines airplay, streaming and sales data, Maren Morris earns her fourth top 10, as "Rich" rises 11-10. It gains by 5 percent to 30.7 million audience impressions, as it holds at its No. 5 high on Country Airplay. Morris adds her first Hot Country Songs top 10 since "I Could Use a Love Song," which peaked at No. 7 on Jan. 20; it topped Country Airplay the same week.

Dan + Shay collect their fifth Country Airplay top 10, as "Speechless" pushes 11-10 (22.6 million, up 11 percent). The pair's first four top 10s all reached No. 1: "Nothin' Like You" (2015), "From the Ground Up" (2016), "How Not To" (2017) and this year's "Tequila" (two weeks beginning July 7).

THIRD TIME CHARMED Luke Combs' "She Got the Best of Me" holds at the Country Airplay summit (44.9 million, up 2 percent), leading the list for the third week and becoming the longest-leading of his four career-opening No. 1s. Combs first reigned with his debut hit "Hurricane," for two weeks starting on the chart dated May 27, 2017, and followed with "When It Rains It Pours," which also dominated for two frames, beginning Nov. 4, 2017, and "One Number Away," which led June 9.

"Best" is the third song that has led Country Airplay for a year-best three weeks in 2018. Luke Bryan's "Most People Are Good" hit No. 1 on March 31, after Brett Young's "Like I Loved You" ruled the first three weeks of the year, starting Jan. 3.