Kenny Chesney Celebrates Chart-Topping “Reality”

Kenny and co-writer Brett James reveal they penned two No. 1 songs in one day.

Clay Bradley (BMI), songwriter Brett James, Kenny Chesney, Troy Tomlinson (Sony/ATV Music Publishing)
photo by Aaron Crisler/The Judy Nelon Group

A day spent in the islands proved more industrious than idle for Kenny Chesney and co-writer Brett James. During a No. 1 party at Nashville restaurant Sambuca on Thursday (April 5), the songwriting duo revealed they wrote two of Kenny's No. 1 singles, "Out Last Night" and his latest No. 1, "Reality," on the same day.

"That was an afternoon well spent, because we were hurtin' [presumably due to alcoholic consumption], but it was a good day," Kenny told the crowd. "The thing that makes me happiest is when I can sit down with a guy like Brett James and make something up that touches people. That's been my foundation in this town from the day I rolled in here. So thanks to everyone for giving us a great 'reality,'" he said, laughing.

Kenny and Brett were joined by producer Buddy Cannon, Sony/ATV Music Publishing Nashville CEO Troy Tomlinson and other industry executives during the celebration.

"'Reality' is the 20th Top 10 we've had on Kenny and the 10th No. 1, but the fourth time I've been able to give him a No. 1 award as the writer of a hit," said Troy, whose company boasts Kenny as a songwriter. "That's because he's so damn hard on his own songs. It takes a miracle for Kenny to consider one of his own songs on his album. It takes a further miracle for him to actually record that and it takes a further miracle for it to make the cutback list when he starts reducing [the songs for an album]. As a publisher that can be rather frustrating. It's the opposite problem of every other artist in the world, but it's the reason this town, the songwriting community and the publishing community loves this artist, because he does cut the songs he really believes are the best songs for him and for his fans. Thank you very much for letting one of them slip through the cracks."

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