Sunday, May 27, 2018
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Brian Dugger

Kenny rules the charts

It s not like it s a surprise, but Kenny Chesney is all over the charts following the release of his new album, "Just Who I Am: Poets and Pirates."

The numbers are in, and Kenny sold 386,685 copies of his album during the first week it was in stores. That s a huge number, but maybe a little lower than what most analysts were predicting.

"I think the music will do the talking for me in the long run - and I know that our albums tend to keep selling week after week after week," Chesney said in a statement.

What s remarkable about the new album is that Chesney has four songs from it on the charts right now. Usually an artist will release a single and let it build momentum for 10-15 weeks before the album hits shelves. Chesney released "Never Wanted Nothing More," and it almost immediately went to No. 1. He then released "Don t Blink," and that single is already sitting at No. 6 after only a couple weeks on the charts.

Two other singles are also in the Top 50: "Shiftwork," a duet with George Strait, and "Wild Ride," in which Joe Walsh helped.

As for the entire album, Chesney fans aren t going to be disappointed. If there s been one complaint about Chesney recently, even as his career s been on a meteoric rise, it s that he s been putting out Jimmy Buffett-like songs. The reason for that is obvious since Chesney makes no apologies for the fact that he feels the freest and most relaxed when he s in the Caribbean, but that side of Chesney isn t what country music fans fell in love with.

On " Just Who I Am," Chesney turns in a solid effort. While some people can t relate to digging your toes in the sand on a beach in the Caribbean as he s sung about in past albums, people can relate to the messages on "Just Who I Am," like growing old like in "Don t Blink," longing for a stable family life in "Wife and Kids," trying to make ends meet and give your kids what they need in "Dancing for the Groceries," and facing down those inner demons we all have in "Demons."

Chesney is right on this one. This album is going to keep selling for a while, and more than likely it s going to lead to an Album of the Year and another Entertainer of the Year when the award shows roll around.


Even though a lot of his female fans will be upset, congratulations to Joe Nichols, who married his longtime girlfriend Heather Singleton earlier this month in Savannah, Ga.

"Heather and I have known each other since we were 18 years old, and I can honestly say I fell in love with her the first day I saw her," Nichols said after the ceremony. "They saying timing is everything is so true with us. I have never been happier."


He, obviously, doesn t garner the attention that his father did, but Shooter Jennings has put out some pretty solid stuff in his short career. His third studio album, "The Wolf," will be in stores on Oct. 23, but Shooter is marking another significant day before that. He ll be making his Grand Ole Opry debut on Tuesday.

"One of the songs off my new album talks about the criticism I ve always faced that my music is not country enough, too rock n roll, so the invitation to play the Opry is a really significant milestone in my career," Jennings said yesterday through his publicist. "I grew up in Nashville most of my life, but playing the Opry stage is really the true sign of acceptance there."

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