Staind frontman Aaron Lewis marks a new peak in his solo country music career as the Valory/Big Machine Label Group single “Am I The Only One” debuts at No.1 on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart dated July 17.
The powerful, politically conservative narrative was written by Lewis with Ira Dean and Jeffrey Steele, and produced by Lewis and Dean. It has equivalent first-week sales of over 59,000, according to MRC Data.
That takes it straight to the top of the chart, which since 2012 has been an amalgam of airplay, sales and streaming data. As Billboard reports, “Am I The Only One” thus joins a distinguished band of only nine songs to debut at No.1 on that chart, and it’s the third this year.
The track also enters Country Digital Song Sales at No.1, achieving the biggest week on that list since Jason Aldean entered in pole position in February 2018 with “You Make It Easy.” Lewis’ “Am I The Only One” was streamed four million times in the US in its first week.
The 49-year-old’s new solo achievement comes after years of spectacular success with Staind, who have topped the Billboard 200 with three of their albums. In his own name, Lewis first dabbled in the country genre with the 2011 EP Town Line on Stroudavarious Records, from which “Country Boy” featured George Jones, Charlie Daniels, and Chris Young.
Loudwire wrote that Lewis “has created an entirely parallel persona to the angsty nu-metal rocker many grew up with starting in the 90s.” It also observed: “With the addition of ‘Am I the Only One’ to his repertoire, it looks like the Staind frontman is staying his dogmatic course as a country artist in 2021, even though he, guitarist Mike Mushok, bassist Johnny April, and drummer Sal Giancarelli reformed Staind two years ago.”
Lewis 2012 album The Road was a Top 10 country chart entry, after which 2016’s Sinner hit No.1 (and No.4 on the Billboard 200) and 2019’s State I’m In No.2 and No.18 respectively.