By Marissa G. Muller
Petty and the Heartbreakers first charted on the Billboard 200 when they released their self-titled album, featuring their seminal hits “American Girl” and “Breakdown,” way back in 1977.
Incredibly, 37 years isn’t the longest time an artist has had to wait to make the No. 1 album. Tony Bennett holds that bragging right after he waited 54 years. He finally earned the top slot with his 2011 album Duets II decades after he first appeared on the Billboard 200 in 1957 for Tony.
If you’re wondering why Petty’s finally earned the No. 1 album now, it might be because of his promotional strategy behind Hypnotic Eye which allowed fans buying tickets to his tour to receive the album as part of their purchase. (Though only those fans who redeemed the album made purchases that counted towards the Billboard position.)
Also, the group luckily didn’t face much competition this week from more contemporary acts as the No. 2 slot was a JJ Cale tribute album, titled The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale, by Eric Clapton.