STAIND singer Aaron Lewis recently spoke to The Register-Guard about his first full-length country album, "The Road", which came out in November 2012 via Blaster Records through Warner Music Nashville.
"The Road" follows up Lewis' 2011 debut solo EP, "Town Line", which entered the Billboard Country Albums chart at No. 1 and featured the hit single "Country Boy". The new album was produced by Nashville hitmaker James Stroud, who also worked on the EP with Lewis.
"Traditional country music was what my childhood soundtrack was," Lewis said. "My grandfather was a huge country music fan, and the radio, the music, was on all the time, always, always, always, from the time that people woke up in the morning to the time that the last light got shut out. It was literally like the radio got shut off and the last light went out and everybody was in bed.
"So I was born in '72, so you know, it was that time frame of music. It was what my grandfather was listening to. It was that time frame and earlier."
Regarding his decision to puruse a career in country music after achieving multi-platinum success with STAIND, Lewis said: "People still think I'm just pandering to a different audience because the audience that I've supposedly pandered to for the past 15 years [in STAIND] is sick of what I have to offer. So I'm coming over here to the country side to take their audience.
"I've heard some pretty messed-up stuff as to what my motivation is as to coming over to country. The fact of the matter is, I'm more country than I am anything else."
STAIND went on hiatus last year after finishing its touring commitments, but has not broken up.
The bandmembers had a difficult time making their latest record, with the group in turmoil and the sessions eventually leading to a split with founding drummer Jon Wysocki.
The new album debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard album chart and marked the end of the group's deal with Atlantic Records.
Lewis said the band would explore its options during the hiatus, adding that it would take "a ridiculous, ridiculous check for me to be willing to sign a label deal again."