New Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Linda Ronstadt roars back onto the Billboard 200, as her new compilation “Duets” debuts at No. 32. The bow instantly grants Ronstadt her highest-charting album since 1990.
The multi-genre performer last charted higher with “Cry Like a Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind” (featuring Aaron Neville), which peaked at No. 7 on March 17, 1990. That set spawned three hit singles with Neville on the Billboard Hot 100, including the smash No. 2 ballad “Don’t Know Much.” It also produced the No. 11 hit “All My Life” and her so-far final Hot 100 entry, “When Something Is Wrong With My Baby,” which topped out at No. 78. (“Much” and “Life” each topped Adult Contemporary, while “Baby” rose to No. 5.)
The new compilation includes “Much” and boasts collaborations with Don Henley, Bette Midler, Frank Sinatra, Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris. Her 1987 No. 2 Hot 100 hit with James Ingram, “Somewhere Out There,” is also on the set. One previously-unreleased cut rounds out the 15-song collection: “Pretty Bird,” with Laurie Lewis.
The new Billboard 200 chart feat and Rock Hall induction comes at a time of crossroads for the singer, who announced in 2013 that she is unable to sing because of Parkinson’s disease. Still, “Duets” is her 35th charting album, stretching back to 1970’s “Silk Purse,” which hit No. 103. She’s scored 10 Billboard 200 top 10s, including three No. 1s: “Heart Like a Wheel” (1975), “Simple Dreams” (1977) and “Living in the USA” (1978).
On the Hot 100, Ronstadt has charted 34 songs, 10 of which reached the top 10 and one of which hit No. 1: 1975’s “You’re No Good.”
Ronstadt, who could not attend the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 10 (as travel is very difficult for her), was celebrated at the event via an all-star performance. A quintet of leading women (along with Glenn Frey) sang for Ronstadt: Sheryl Crow, Harris, Stevie Nicks, Bonnie Raitt and Carrie Underwood.