With their very first albums, these 10 country artists made a statement. From Johnny Cash in 1957 to the Dixie Chicks (now the Chicks) in 1998, Connie Smith in 1965 to Chris Stapleton in 2015, these albums changed the game.

Whether they ushered in a new sound, brought tradition back to the genre, filled a gap in the market or were simply a huge and unforgettable force, these 10 debut albums have left an indelible mark on country music. Read on to learn more about each of them -- and share your picks for the genre's important debut albums in the comments section:

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