Brooks & Dunn are the best-selling country music duo of all time—and it’s not even close.
While Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn may have to split their earnings, there’s plenty to go around, according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). For the last seven decades, the RIAA has been tracking domestic album sales in the U.S. with its precious designations: Gold (500,000 units), Platinum (1 million units), Multi-Platinum (2 million units), and Diamond (10 million units).
B&D clock in at No. 15 on our list of the Top 20 Best-Selling Country Artists of All Time.
No. 15: Brooks & Dunn
- 27.5 Million Units Sold
- 6 Multi-Platinum Albums
- 5 Platinum Albums
- 1 Gold Album
- 4 Gold Singles
Kix & Ronnie Become Brand-New Men
Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn were both solo singer/songwriters in the 1980s when a mutual friend suggested they meet each other. By 1991, Kix and Ronnie were signed to Arista Nashville and calling themselves Brooks & Dunn.
The tandem dropped their debut album, Brand New Man, in August 1991. And they never looked back.
While Brooks & Dunn have six Multi-Platinum albums in their iconic catalog, Brand New Man is the heaviest hitter. The duo’s breakout album has been certified 6X Platinum by the RIAA for sales of 6 million units. Although the album never reached No. 1 on the Billboard Top Country Albums chart, it did spawn four No. 1 singles: “Brand New Man,” “My Next Broken Heart,” “Neon Moon,” and “Boot Scootin’ Boogie.”
In addition to Brand New Man, Brooks & Dunn have five other Multi-Platinum albums: Hard Workin’ Man (5X), Greatest Hits (4X), Waitin’ on Sunday (3X), Borderline (2X), and If You See Her (2X).
During their Hall of Fame career, Brooks & Dunn scored 20 No. 1 singles and an addition 19 Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart.
The duo can also claim four Gold singles, which have been certified by the RIAA for sales of 500,000 units: “Play Something Country,” “Hillbilly Deluxe,” “Believe,” and “Cowgirls Don’t Cry.” In addition, Brooks & Dunn netted more than 80 industry awards, including two Grammy Awards and the CMA Award for Entertainer of the Year in 1996.
In Defense of Brooks & Dunn
According to the RIAA, only one duo in the history of music has sold more albums that Brooks & Dunn: Simon & Garfunkel (38.5 million units).
Let that sink in for a second.