Veteran rockers Tom Petty, Eric Clapton top Billboard album chart

"Hypnotic Eye," the latest album from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, entered the Billboard 200 chart at No. 1.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Call it a boomer twofer, or maybe a classic rock bloc.

Tom Petty and Eric Clapton, two of the most durable veterans of that long-ago era when guitars ruled the radio, took the No. 1 and No. 2 slots on this week’s Billboard 200 album chart.

Hypnotic Eye,” the latest from Petty and his longtime backing band, the Heartbreakers, topped the tally with sales of 131,000 copies in the week that ended Aug. 3, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The L.A.-based group’s 13th studio disc is the first to hit No. 1 and also marks “the best debut sales week for Petty since SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991,” wrote Billboard’s Keith Caulfield.

The Heartbreakers launched a North American tour behind “Hypnotic Eye” on Sunday in San Diego; they’re scheduled to return to Southern California in October for shows at the Forum and Anaheim’s Honda Center.


Further demonstrating his staying power (or at least his sense of timing), Petty also appears on this week’s No. 2 album, “The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale,” billed to Eric Clapton & Friends. It’s an all-star tribute to the late singer-songwriter who provided Clapton with several of his biggest hits, including “Cocaine” and “After Midnight.”

With contributions from Petty, John Mayer and Willie Nelson, among others, “The Breeze” sold 61,000 copies -- Clapton’s biggest first-week number since his Robert Johnson tribute, “Me and Mr. Johnson,” started with 128,000 in 2004.

Other new albums entering the chart this week include the soundtrack to “Guardians of the Galaxy” at No. 3, Shawn Mendes’ self-titled EP at No. 5, Theory of a Deadman’s “Savages” at No. 8 and “The Voyager” by Jenny Lewis at No. 9.

Twitter: @mikaelwood