Maybe there's some life left in the record industry after all.
Kenny Chesney's Hemingway's Whiskey barrels into No. 1 on Billboard's country albums chart with first-week sales of 183,469 copies (as tabulated by Nielsen SoundScan).
You may recall that the Zac Brown Band's You Get What You Give debuted on top last week with sales of 153,402 units. These are both very encouraging totals, albeit modest ones compared to those country artists routinely racked up during the delirious sales frenzy of the 1990s.
And there's more good news for the man from East Tennessee. Chesney's "The Boys of Fall" keeps it penthouse perch on the songs chart for the second week.
The other albums entering the chart this week are Michael Waddell's Bone Collector's The Brotherhood Album, featuring Rhett Akins and Dallas Davidson, which bows in at No. 47, and Randy Travis' Top 10 (No. 68).
Returning to action are Cory Morrow's Brand New Me (No. 61), Icon: Trisha Yearwood (No. 73) and the multi-artist Mud Digger (No. 75).
Brett Eldredge's "Raymond" is the week's highest-charting new song. It arrives at No. 52 and is followed by Craig Morgan's "Still a Little Chicken Left on That Bone" (No. 54) and Jewel's "Ten" (No. 55).
Rocket Club's "One Thing Beautiful" resurfaces at No. 57.
Albums No. 2 through No. 5, in that order, are the Zac Brown Band's You Get What You Give, Billy Currington's Enjoy Yourself, Jamey Johnson's The Guitar Song and Lady Antebellum's Need You Now.
Rounding out the Top 5 songs are Josh Turner's "All Over Me," Darius Rucker's "Come Back Song," Easton Corbin's "Roll With It" and Sugarland's "Stuck Like Glue."
"The Boys of Fall," which Casey Beathard and Dave Turnbull wrote, is the latest literary incarnation in a long line of dramatic sounding seasonal titles. The title echoes, of course, Don Henley's 1984 pop hit, "The Boys of Summer."
Henley's song may have been inspired by Roger Kahn's 1972 bestseller of the same name which chronicled, among other things, the author's long love affair with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Kahn, in turn, seems to have copped his title from the Dylan Thomas poem, "I See the Boys of Summer," which was published in 1934.