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In life, Kenny Rogers was a beloved musician whose songs and albums were wildly popular for decades. Now, in less than two weeks since his passing at the age of 81, Rogers’ music has once again climbed to the top of the charts.
For the first time since the ’80s, Kenny Rogers’ name can be found in the No. 1 slot on Billboard’s Top Country Album chart as his 2018 album, “The Best of Kenny Rogers: Through the Years,” became the most popular country album in the U.S. for the week ending March 26, 2020. The album also comes in at No. 9 on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, marking the first time Rogers broke into that top 10.
“The Best of Kenny Rogers: Through the Years” is a collection of Rogers’ greatest hits and features 16 of the 21 songs that made it to No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs. Some beloved favorites included on the album are “Lucille,” “The Gambler” and “We’ve Got Tonight.”
Curiously missing is one of Rogers’ best-known titles, “Islands in the Stream,” which he performed as a duet with country icon Dolly Parton.
“Islands in the Stream” is still top of mind for many fans, however, as it currently sits at No. 2 on Billboard’s Digital Song Sales chart for the week ending March 26 — right behind “The Gambler,” which comes in at No. 1 on the chart.
And in a surprising twist, two more of Rogers’ popular hits made it to the top 10 on the Digital Song Sales chart for the week: “Lady” is at No. 7 and “Through the Years” is No. 9.
This means that not only is Rogers now topping the country album charts, he’s also taken the top two spots for most-popular songs — and totaling a whopping four songs in the top 10 bestselling tracks for the week. This is an incredible accomplishment and clear evidence that Rogers continues to be deeply loved and missed.
The last time Rogers dominated the charts was during the first six weeks of 1986, when his album “The Heart of the Matter” took the top place until Feb. 8, when it was beat out by Hank Williams Jr.’s “Greatest Hits Volume 2.”
The first time a Kenny Rogers album landed in the No. 1 spot on the Top Country Album list was in 1977 with Rogers’ self-titled album. Now, including this posthumous chart-topper, Rogers has had 12 albums reach the top spot.
Rogers clearly has plenty of fans left in this world, and one of his biggest fans is Dolly Parton, who shared a heartfelt message on social media following Rogers’ death on March 20.
“You never know how much you love somebody until they’re gone,” Parton wrote to accompany a tribute video she made in which she expressed heartbreak over the loss of her friend.
“I’ve had so many wonderful years and wonderful times with my friend Kenny, but above all the music and the success I loved him as a wonderful man and a true friend,” Parton’s post continued. “So you be safe with God and just know that I will always love you.”