Country music was around way before 1948. Jimmy Rogers and the Carter Family were selling 78 RPM records in the 1920s. But Country music split off from "Hillbilly" music in the years after WWII. Billboard Magazine started a country chart based just on juke box plays from 1944 to 1948. After that "Country and Western" and eventually just "Country" had a chart of it's own. With the help of a great book, "Joel Whitburn's Top Country Singles", Here are the number one country tunes of each year.

Stagecoach: California's Country Music Festival 2010 - Day 1
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Merle Haggard once said he felt real country music stopped about 1975 so I have given a little leeway to that and listed the top tunes up to 1985. The top song of each year is based on a combination of  most weeks at #1, most weeks in the top 10, most weeks in the top 40 and most weeks charted.  Do you remember these?

1948   Bouquet  of Roses - Eddy Arnold

1949   Slippin' Around - Jimmy Wakely & Margaret Whiting

1950   I'm Movin' On - Hank Snow

1951   Slow Poke - Pee Wee King

1952   The Wild Side of Life - Hank Thompson

1953   Kaw-Liga - Hank Williams

1954   I Don't Hurt Anymore - Hank Snow

1955   In the Jailhouse Now - Webb Pierce

1956   Crazy Arms - Ray Price

1957   Gone - Ferlin Husky

1958   City Lights - Ray Price

1959  The Battle of New Orleans - Johnny Horton

1960  Please Help Me I'm Fallin' - Hank Locklin

1961   Walk on By - Leroy Van Dyke

1962   Don't Let Me Cross Over - Carl & Pearl Butler

1963   Love's Gonna Live Here Again - Buck Owens

1964   Once a Day - Connie Smith

1965   Before You Go - Buck Owens

1966    Almost Persuaded - Davis Houston

1967   All the Time - Jack Greene

1968   Skip a Rope - Henson Cargill

1969   Daddy Sang Bass - Johnny Cash

1970   Rose Garden - Lynn Anderson

1971   Kiss an Angel Good Morning - Charley Pride

1972   My Hang Up is You - Freddy Hart

1973   If We Make it Through December - Merle Haggard

1974   A Very Special Love Song - Charlie Rich

1975   Convoy - C W McCall

1976   Good Hearted Women - Waylon and Willie

1977   Luckenbach Texas - Waylon Jennings with Willie Nelson

1978   Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be Cowboys - Waylon & Willie

1979   Every Which Way But Loose - Eddie Rabbitt

1980   Coward of the County - Kenny Rogers

1981   Love in the First Degree - Alabama

1982   Always on my Mind - Willie Nelson

1983   Islands in the Stream - Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton

1984   Why Not Me - Judds

1985   Have Mercy - Judds

You'll hear all of these and many more on WKDQ "COUNTRY CLASSICS" every Saturday 6-10 AM central time.

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