Icon Dolly Parton earns her first No. 1 on Billboard‘s Top Country Albums chart (dated Sept. 10) in more than 25 years, as Pure & Simple debuts at the summit with 20,000 copies sold in its first week (ending Aug. 25), according to Nielsen Music.
Parton achieves her seventh Top Country Albums No. 1 and first since Eagle When She Flies on the May 18, 1991-dated list.
“Boy, it’s a good day for me. I am a happy girl!,” Parton beamed in a statement. “It feels great to be No. 1, as it’s been a long time, and it feels so good to still be in the game after all this time.”
With its stripped-down production and intimate lyrics, Pure & Simple, Parton’s 43rd studio LP, also opens atop Billboard‘s Americana/Folk Albums chart, her first No. 1 on the survey.
Promo for the set included appearances by Parton on NBC’s Today and The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
Pure & Simple was self-released on Dolly Records in a partnership with Sony Music Nashville. Parton recorded for RCA Records (now under the Sony umbrella) from 1968 to 1981. “I first started working with Dolly in 1981,” says SMN chairman/CEO Randy Goodman. “It’s a joy to be working with her again, and for her to have her first No. 1 album in the [Nielsen era, which began a week after Eagle landed at the chart’s top perch] is incredible.”
On the all-genre, consumption-based Billboard 200, Pure & Simple starts at No. 11 (21,000 equivalent album units), marking Parton’s second consecutive top 15 rank; Blue Smoke debuted and peaked at No. 6 in 2014, becoming her second top 10 and first since 1987 (when Trio, with Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris also hit No. 6). Parton has now charted back-to-back top 15 albums on the Billboard 200 for the first time.
GETTING THE ‘PARTY’ STARTED: Additionally, on Top Country Albums, Casey Donahew‘s sixth album, and third top 10, All Night Party (Almost Country/Thirty Tigers), opens at No. 3 (11,000 sold). It’s a new chart high for the Texan, besting 2013’s Standoff (No. 7, which began with a career-best 13,000). 2011’s Double-Wide Dream began and peaked at No. 10 (with those two sets credited to the Casey Donahew Band).
Starting at No. 4 on Top Country Albums is Drake White‘s debut LP Spark (Dot/Big Machine Label Group), with 11,000 sold.