Wednesday, April 18, 2012
– Lionel Richie has the best-selling album in the nation this week with "Tuskegee," his country duets project. When the charts are out on Thursday, Richie will be atop the Billboard Country Albums chart for the second week. A television special airing last week doubtlessly helped spur sales.
With the week's sales of 128,553, Tuskegee is now the best-selling country album of 2012. The disc has overall sales of 422,856 units. This is the album's third consecutive week in the Top 5 of the Billboard Top 200. The album was released on March 26 and debuted at 2 on the Billboard 200 with sales of 198,892, becoming the best-selling debut by any country artist this year. It debuted at number one on the country albums chart and was his best sales week since SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991. The album features duets of 13 of his hits with Jason Aldean, Jimmy Buffett, Kenny Chesney, Billy Currington, Little Big Town, Tim McGraw, Willie Nelson, Jennifer Nettles, Rascal Flatts, Kenny Rogers, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton and Shania Twain. The deluxe edition of the album contains a DVD featuring exclusive behind-the-scenes footage of the recording sessions with Richie and his duet partners.
"I love the feeling.," Richie said. "You cannot beat the feeling of sitting on top of the charts. I had almost forgotten what it feels like, but now that I am there, I know exactly what it feels like. It feels great! It is really a very exciting time and I am enjoying the ride."
"With a record like this, you can't take the bow alone," he said. "You take it with the wonderful talent that came onboard and believed in this project. It is just amazing to have all of the very talented artists, producers and musicians who participated in this. This was one big family reunion, as far as I am concerned. We take the bow together because it was an outstanding group effort.
Richie also thanked fans. "They are the ones who made this possible," he said. "This unbelievable result could not have happened without them. They are the ones who have stuck around forever with me. For the new ones and the old ones, it's great to have them onboard.
"To the fans, thank you for allowing me to enjoy what I do for all of these years, and for enjoying what I do. I thank you for being a part of my story."
On Friday, April 13, CBS aired "ACM Presents: Lionel Richie and Friends-In Concert," which served as a tribute to Richie's influential career. The show featured performances by Richie, Aldean, Marc Anthony, The Band Perry, Big & Rich, Luke Bryan, Sara Evans, Lady Antebellum, Martina McBride, Jennifer Nettles, Rascal Flatts, Rogers, Rucker, Chesney, McGraw and Shelton.
"Tuskegee" debuted number one on Canada's Top Albums chart and reaching the Top 10 albums charts in the United Kingdom, Denmark, Holland and Sweden. This is his first number one album in Canada since his sophomore solo album, "Can't Slow Down," in 1983.