Kenny Rogers' Greatest Hits, which soared all the way to the top of the Billboard 200 pop album chart on this day in 1980, marking Kenny's arrival as a crossover superstar.
By 1980, Kenny Rogers already had seven #1 country singles under his belt, including "Lucille," "The Gambler" (1978) and "Coward Of The County" (1979). All three of those songs, as well as "Don't Fall In Love With A Dreamer," his 1980 duet with Kim Carnes, had also reached the top 10 on the Billboard pop charts, but it was a brand-new song on Kenny Rogers' Greatest Hits that would help propel that album to 12-times Platinum status and give Rogers his only solo #1 pop hit: the Lionel Richie-penned "Lady." (A simultaneous country chart-topper, "Lady" also gave Richie, the former Commodores frontman, his only share of a country #1.)
For several years following the success of his Greatest Hits album, Kenny Rogers remained a hot item on both the pop and country charts, his biggest crossover hits coming with two 1983 duets written by prominent songwriters: "We've Got Tonight," written by Bob Seger and performed with Sheena Easton (#1 Country, #6 Pop); and "Islands In The Stream," written by Barry Gibb and performed with Dolly Parton (#1 Country, Pop and Adult Contemporary). And while Rogers would cease to be a factor on the pop charts after 1984, he would go on to earn five further country #1 hits: "Crazy" (a 1985 cover of the Willie Nelson-penned classic); "Morning Desire" and "Tomb Of The Unknown Love" (both 1987); "Make No Mistake, She's Mine" (1987, with Ronnie Milsap); and "Buy Me A Rose" (1999, with Alison Kraus and Billy Dean).