Country 97.5 Presents
Sunday, January 19, 2020
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm
Blaisdell Center Concert Hall
Throughout his more than two-decade career, whether topping the charts as frontman of hard Rock heroes Staind, or his second act as a No. 1 artist on the Country charts as a solo artist, Aaron Lewis has always been painfully honest in his music.
“That’s all I’ve ever done. My songs have always been me wearing my heart on my sleeve, and my emotions on my sleeve, and my misfortunes on my sleeve, my sins on my sleeve,” Lewis says. “I don’t feel like it would be genuine nor worthy of this crazy ride I’ve been on if it wasn’t.”
He is 100 percent open, as he has to be, about his stunning new collection, STATE I’M IN (The Valory Music Co.).
“The songs I wrote on this record, they were some dark times,” he says. “The state I’m in is not Mississippi, or Texas, or Massachusetts, it’s more about the emotional state I’m in and everything I’ve surprisingly talked about in this interview. I’m always surprised by what comes out of me. I’m always surprised by the overall content of a record. It is a flow of consciousness.”
That consciousness led Lewis to the most vulnerable record of his career. In the gorgeously melancholy title track, Lewis sings candidly, “I’m still working my fingers to the phone/When the show is over I sit alone/Where the angels and the devils are my only friends/And I get up in the morning and I do it again.”
One of the most poignant songs is the touching ballad “Love Me.” Lewis says that song is a cornerstone of the album. “That was a really heartbreaking song for me to write,” he says. “The tears were rolling down my face and blurring the words on the page, I was writing as fast as I could with a pen. The flow of emotion that went into that song was pretty overwhelming.”
The album has plenty of up moments musically as well, starting with the opening track, the raucous “The Party’s Over,” a song that oozes old-school country twang. Another song that screams old-school country is “Burnt the Sawmill Down,” which comes from never before heard Keith Whitley lyrics.