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50 Number Ones

George Strait

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Album Review

There have been plenty of George Strait compilations, and most of have been very good, but none have been as good as 2004's 50 Number Ones. While the 1995 box set Strait Out of the Box illustrated the range and depth of Strait's musical achievement, it may have been too lengthy for some listeners, and shorter compilations like the two-volume The Very Best of Strait left too many hits behind — and by 2004, all those compilations were out-dated, since Strait continued to top the charts until the release of 50 Number Ones. This double-disc contains all the big hits that he's had since Strait Out of the Box, along with all of his classics from the '80s and early '90s. The title might bend the truth a little bit — at least according to the Billboard charts, such latter-day singles as "True" and "Run" only peaked at number two, not number one — but it doesn't matter, since this contains all of his major singles in one convenient package. And it's not noteworthy just because it's one-stop shopping, it's also noteworthy because it proves exactly how consistent George Strait's body of work has been over the last twenty-some years. From start to finish, there's not a slow spot here — it's a thoroughly entertaining collection that belongs in the ranks of country's greatest-hits albums.

Biography

Born: 18 May 1952 in Poteet, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Out of all the country singers to emerge in the 1980s, George Strait stayed the closest to traditional country. Drawing from both the honky tonk and Western swing traditions, Strait didn't refashion the genres; instead, he revitalized them. In the process, he became one of the most popular and influential singers of the era, sparking a wave...
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