BY LISA WARREN
Greeneville's The Band Perry have blazed a trail to the top of the national album charts.
Their new album, "Pioneer," released April 2, was this week's top-selling country album, the band announced on Wednesday afternoon.
The release made its appearance atop the Top Country Albums chart, selling nearly 130,000 copies in its first week.
In addition, the new album also scored a No. 2 debut on Billboard magazine's Top 200 multi-genre album chart.
According to the online country music industry magazine The Boot, "Pioneer" was just about 10,000 copies shy of outselling the No. 1 pop album of the week, Justin Timberlake's "The 20/20 Experience."
On the iTunes digital album chart, the album was No. 4 for the week ending April 8, behind Blake Sheton's "Based on a True Story" at No. 3; Tyler, The Creator's "Wolf" at No. 2, and Timberlake's 20/20 at No. 1.
On the Top Country Digital Singles chart, the group's current single, "Done," jumped from No. 20 to No. 7, increasing its sales from the previous week by 178 percent.
The group delivered a high-energy performance of the tune Sunday evening on the Academy of Country Music Awards show, which was broadcast live on CBS.
According to the Nielsen ratings, the show, which had 15.38 million viewers, was the most-watched ACM awards event since 1998.
3 NO. 1 SINGLES
The "Pioneer" album debut single, "Better Dig Two," became the band's third No. 1 hit single.
On March 30, Kimberly, Neil and Reid Perry, the sibling trio who make up The Band Perry, gave their hometown fans in Greeneville first dibs on the new album and also provided them with a free concert and autograph session.
A crowd estimated by a Greeneville Police Department spokesman at 25,000 took to the streets of downtown Greeneville for the concert, with thousands of them remaining after the show to receive an autograph on the new CD from their famous neighbors.
The autograph line stretched more than a quarter-mile down Main Street.
LOCAL AND OUT-OF-TOWN FANS
In addition to Greeneville and Greene County residents, who came to North Main Street to see "their" band -- the special concert was also attended by out-of-town fans.
An invitation posted via social media prior to the concert asked if fans were attending and, if so, from where.
Responses came in from all over the United States, including Florida, Iowa, Georgia, Alabama, and Texas, among others. Some fans even reported that they were making the trip from Canada.
The event, presented by the Greene County Partnership and sponsored by General Mills and Outnumber Hunger, was believed by town officials to be the largest single-event gathering ever recorded in Greeneville.
'WE HAD A GREAT TIME'
"We are so humbled by the show of support from our hometown, as well as our fans that traveled so many miles -- and our neighbors just down the street -- to see the show!" Neil Perry said.
"We had a great time signing CDs for everyone who braved the crisp night air waiting to meet us and say hello."
"To have so many people come out and celebrate with us in Greeneville is just amazing," Reid Perry added.
"Our hometown has given us a lot, and we wanted to do something to give back.
"I think everybody had a good time. I know that we sure did," Reid added.
"To know where you are going, you have to know where you've been," Kimberly Perry said.
"We love small towns and embrace the nurturing they provide. We will be the first to tell you that great things come from humble beginnings.
"You don't have to think small just because you are from a small town, and we want everyone to know that.
"We had a great time performing for our friends in Greeneville."
INSIDE THE PACKAGING...
Inside the packaging of "Pioneer" were photos that were taken in the downtown Greeneville area during a special photo shoot with the band members back in January.
Among those is a centerfold photo that shows the Perrys with members of the Chuckey-Doak High School and South Greene High School marching bands.
In addition, the album packaging features a photo of C-DHS Black Knight percussionist Kori Smith drumming down Depot Street, and a photo of the Perry siblings standing with lighted sparklers under the specially lighted electric U.S. flag atop the former First National Bank building on South Main Street.