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Kenny Chesney’s ‘Rock’ Solid Album Sales

Kenny Chesney’s “Life on a Rock” became the country star’s seventh album to take the summit of the U.S. album chart last week.

Chesney’s Blue Chair/Columbia Nashville release tallied 153,000 copies in its debut stanza, according to Nielsen SoundScan data for the week ending May 5. Chesney’s last No. 1 release, “Hemingway’s Whiskey,” shifted 183,000 out of the box in 2010. Just two of the nine studio albums issued by the singer since 2002 have failed to reach the top.

Amid a slow frame for new releases, only one other debut title climbed into the top 10: “Trouble” (MCA Nashville) by country act the Randy Rogers Band, which signed on at No. 9, tracking 26,000 copies. That’s one slot off the No. 8 peak of the group’s 2010 release “Burning the Day.”

Previous week’s No. 1 debut, Canadian balladeer Michael Buble’s “To Be Loved” (Warner Bros.), slipped to No. 2 with a 51% drop, selling 96,000. Justin Timberlake’s hardy “The 20/20 Experience” (RCA) held onto No. 3 for a fourth week, selling 68,000 (off 8%); a swift sequel to the hit title, which has sold more than 1.7 million in seven weeks, has been announced for the fall.

In its second week, Fantasia’s “Side Effects of You” (RCA) fell two positions to No. 4 (36,000 sold, off 60%). Lofted by another hit single, the hyperactive “Can’t Hold Us,” Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ “The Heist” (Macklemore) rebounded back into the top 10 in its 30th chart week, reaching No. 5 with 35,000 sold (up 24%).

The top 10 was completed by Blake Shelton’s “Based on a True Story…” (No. 6, 35,000, down 3%), Pink’s “The Truth About Love” (No. 7, 26,000, off 8%), Bruno Mars’ “Unorthodox Jukebox” (No. 8, 26,000, up 4%) and Imagine Dragons’ “Night Visions” (No. 10, 25,000, up 14%). Less than 500 copies separated the Pink and Mars titles.

Competition at the apex of the chart should heat up next week, as new releases by Lady Antebellum, Rod Stewart, Pistol Annies and Dixie Chicks’ Natalie Maines vie for position.

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