Prepare yourself for this nugget of pop culture history: Carrie Underwood won American Idol’s fourth season a whopping decade ago (we feel kinda ancient too, don’t worry). While she’s far from the only successful Idol alumnus, Underwood’s success is notable for her sheer dominance of a genre (country) and the fact that nothing suggests she’s slowing down.
Case in point: her sixth album Storyteller dropped on October 23 and quickly claimed the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Country Album chart, giving Underwood a perfect record of #1 debuts. This stat already looks impressive on its own, but it’s made even more impressive by the fact that she’s the first artist ever to hit that milestone. That’s right: All five of Underwood’s albums (and a greatest hits compilation) have debuted at the top spot of the definitive country chart, and totally set the bar for artists everywhere.
For the casual music listener or really, any non-country fan, they might expect the genre’s chart leaders to all be men; after all, those are the acts who generally dominate country music festivals like Stagecoach. However, another point to note about Underwood’s record: She passed the previous standard (five albums debuting at the top of the Billboard Country Music chart) set by Miranda Lambert, who’s provided some of the best recent torch songs in the genre.
The language in Billboard‘s formal statement regarding Underwood and Lambert’s chart placings is a little unclear, but what’s obvious: Now Underwood’s tied for third with none other than Dolly Parton for female artists with the most Top Country Albums. (Loretta Lynn and Reba McEntire are second and first, respectively.) That’s an impressive feat no matter how you slice it, but considering Underwood’s only just gotten a decade into her career, she’s certainly set to break many more milestones in the future.
Listen to Storyteller below:
Images via Instagram.