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Here's a look at some of the big albums coming out this fall. .
Jason Aldean, Night Train
Aldean says his touring convoy of buses and tractor trailers feels like a train rolling down the interstate every night, inspiring the name Night Train for his fifth studio album. Coming out Oct. 16, it follows a year of career-highlighting success, but Aldean isn't ready to settle down yet. "There's no formula to music," he says. "It's meant to be experimented with. You're supposed to try things. So I love getting in there with my guys and coming up with sounds that nobody else really uses." Aldean brings back his longtime producer Michael Knox for the project and started things off with "Take a Little Ride," but the most exciting news about Night Train might be the collaboration between Aldean, Luke Bryan and Eric Church called "The Only Way I Know." "I love collaborations like that," says Aldean. "And I think the fans dig it when artists get together. It keeps it interesting."
Toby Keith, Hope on the Rocks
After reconnecting with the spirit of his grandmother's bar on 2011's Clancy's Tavern, Keith is sticking with the booze theme for his next album. Due Nov. 13, Hope on the Rocks is a concoction mixed in the traditional T.K. fashion. He produced the tracks himself and also serves as the project's primary songwriter. His first single is the perfect chaser for "Red Solo Cup," telling the story of a guy who prefers a simple country lifestyle over the posh flamboyance of his girlfriend. "I Like Girls That Drink Beer" is its name, and it would probably do well as a slogan for his actual line of restaurants. Ordering up Hope on the Rocks will get you 10 tracks, while springing for the deluxe version includes 14, plus tip of course.
Scotty McCreery, Christmas With Scotty McCreery
McCreery says Christmas music was always a big deal in his family's North Carolina home, so the American Idol champ was delighted to record his first album of Christmas tunes. "As a family, we were all really excited about making a Christmas album," he says. "Now we can add my CD to the collection we listen to." The 11 songs he chose range from holiday standards to brand new tracks like "Christmas in Heaven" and "Christmas Is Coming Around." And being a big fan of Elvis Presley, McCreery even sneaks "Santa Claus Is Back in Town" on the project, due Oct. 16. "I just wanted it to be holly and jolly and really lift people's spirits in the Christmas season because it's supposed to be a really happy time," says McCreery. It'll be hard to say humbug to that.
Blake Shelton, Cheers, It's Christmas
For Shelton's first holiday album, the singer and The Voice judge went all out. "This is honestly the only Christmas album that I plan on ever making," says Shelton. "And I wanted to do one that counted and is timeless and, hopefully, classic." To that end, he chose a few well-known songs as well as some fresher ones that won't seem like obvious choices and even used a full orchestra to back him on some tracks. Then he assembled an all-star cast to help him with the singing duties, led by his mother, Dorothy Shackleford, on the self-penned "Time for Me to Come Home." "My mother, my family, home -- that is Christmas to me," he says. Also appearing on the album are Michael Bublé, Kelly Clarkson, Reba McEntire, wife Miranda Lambert and her group the Pistol Annies. You can start spreading the holiday cheer on Oct. 2.
Taylor Swift, Red
One of the most anticipated albums of the year is surely Swift's Red. Arriving Oct. 22, her fourth studio album features 16 tracks, including "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," a single that's already breaking records. Racking up 623,000 downloads during its first week online, it set the new high-water-mark for digital song sales by a female in one week. After writing every song by herself on 2010's Speak Now, Swift enlisted the help of an A-team group of producers and songwriters to help her flesh out Red. As for the album's colorful title, Swift says "In my mind, when you experience love that's fast paced and out of control and mixes infatuation, jealousy, frustration, miscommunication and all of those lovely emotions ... in retrospect, it all looks red."
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