Hill, Vassar Score Impressive Billboard Debuts

The title track from Faith Hill ’s new album, Cry, has landed at No. 32 on Billboard’s Hot Country Singles & Tracks to become her highest chart debut ever. Set for release in October, Cry follows up Breathe, Hill’s 1999 album that sold more than 7 million copies. Earlier in her career, Hill debuted at No. 35 with “There You’ll Be” and “It’s Your Love.”

On the Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart, the week’s biggest story is Phil Vassar , whose sophomore project — American Child — debuts at No. 4. It follows his self-titled debut album that spawned four Top 10 singles, including the chart-topping “Just Another Day in Paradise.”

Meanwhile, Kenny Chesney and Toby Keith continue to hang tough at the top of the charts. While Chesney enjoys his fifth week at No. 1 with his single, “The Good Stuff,” Keith’s Unleashed sits atop chart for the third consecutive week.

Coming on strong are the Dixie Chicks , whose “Long Time Gone” flies to No. 2 on the singles chart. After dropping one slot last week, Tim McGraw ’s “Unbroken” jumps to No. 3, with Darryl Worley ’s “I Miss My Friend” climbing to No. 4 and Keith’s “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (The Angry American)” falling to No. 5. Gary Allan ’s “The One” dips to No. 6, Sara Evans ’ “I Keep Looking” rises to No. 7 and Tracy Byrd ’s “Ten Rounds with Jose Cuervo” remains at No. 8. Andy Griggs ’ “Tonight I Wanna Be Your Man” drops to No. 9, with Joe Nichols spending his second week at No. 10 with “The Impossible.”

Tanya Tucker ’s “A Memory Like I’m Gonna Be” lands at No. 59 as the only other single to debut this week. Airpower designations go to Alan Jackson ’s “Work in Progress” at No. 18 and Martina McBride ’s “Where Would You Be” at No. 19.

Elsewhere on the albums chart, Chesney’s No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems remains at No. 2 and the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack stays at No. 3. With Vassar in the No. 4 slot, Jackson’s Drive is at No. 5, McBride’s Greatest Hits is at No. 6 and Worley’s I Miss My Friend stands at No. 7. Keith’s previous release, Pull My Chain, is at No. 8, with McGraw and Chesney’s individual Greatest Hits albums closing out the Top 10 at No. 9 and No. 10, respectively.

Debuting on the album chart are releases from Allison Moorer and Kevin Fowler. Moorer’s Miss Fortune, her first for the new Universal South imprint, debuts at No. 35. Texas-based Fowler takes the honky-tonk route to debut at No. 54 with High on the Hog, released by independent Tin Roof Records. At No. 20, Alison Krauss & Union Station get the Greatest Gainer award with New Favorite. The 25th anniversary of Elvis Presley ’s death resulted in additional sales for Elvis: Today, Tomorrow & Forever. The collection receives Pacesetter status by landing at No. 41.

Calvin Gilbert has served as CMT.com’s managing editor since 2002. His background includes stints at the Nashville Banner, Radio & Records and Westwood One.