Remember When a 67-Year-Old Neil Diamond Scored His First No. 1 Album on the ‘Billboard’ 200 with ‘Home Before Dark’

By 2008, Neil Diamond had long been a successful and beloved singer/songwriter, with three No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, a Grammy, and an induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame under his belt. One achievement that had eluded Diamond, though, was having an album top the Billboard 200.

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That changed on May 24, 2008, when Home Before Dark ascended to No. 1 on the chart. It also became Diamond’s first album to top the U.K. chart.

[RELATED: How Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline” Became a Boston Baseball Tradition]

Diamond was 67 years, 3 months old when Home Before Dark topped the Billboard 200, making him the oldest artist at the time to ever have a No. 1 album on the chart.

Details About Home Before Dark

Home Before Dark was Diamond’s 27th studio effort, and his second consecutive album that was produced by Rick Rubin.

Home Before Dark featured one charting single, “Pretty Amazing Grace,” which reached No. 30 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary tally. The album also included a song called “Another Day (That Time Forgot),” a duet with Natalie Maines of The Chicks.

A variety of well-known musicians contributed to the album. Among them were Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers members Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench, lauded alt-rock guitarist Matt Sweeney, and veteran session guitarist Smokey Hormel. David Campbell created string arrangements for the album.

Diamond wrote all 12 tracks on the standard edition of Home Before Dark. A deluxe version of the album featured two bonus cover songs—renditions of Harry Nilsson’s “Without Her” and Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love.”

More About Diamond Setting a Chart Record with Home Before Dark

With Home Before Dark, Diamond eclipsed Dylan’s record for the oldest artist to top the Billboard 200. Dylan previously had set the record in 2006 with Modern Times when he was 65.

Interestingly, Dylan took the record back from Diamond in May 2009, when, at the age of 67 years, 11 months, his album Together Through Life topped the Billboard 200.

In October 2011, Tony Bennett broke Dylan’s record when, at age 85, his Duets II album hit No. 1 on the chart. Bennett eclipsed his own record in October 2014, when his collaborative album with Lady Gaga, Cheek to Cheek, topped the Billboard 200. The crooner was 88 years old at the time.

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