As the frontman for the band bearing his name, Daughtry has become one of the most visible and consistent rock & roll torchbearers of the 21st Century. Since rising to prominence on the fifth season of American Idol, he has released four albums, all of which reached the Billboard Top Ten and have combined sales over 8 million copies in the U.S.
Daughtry’s self-titled debut was the best-selling album of 2007, which contained four Top Twenty hit singles including the Grammy-nominated smash “It’s Not Over.” Leave This Town also reached Number One in 2009, while 2011’s Break the Spell was certified gold. His group’s most recent record, 2013’s Baptized, featured the platinum-selling “Waiting for Superman,” which the singer points to as a turning point in his songwriting.
Daughtry and his band have been performing together for over a decade. “Like anything with a ten year relationship, you know more about each other than you do most of your family,” says Chris Daughtry. “It’s a love-hate thing—you get sick of being around them, but after two weeks at home you’re ready to get back out on the road and do it again. The fan base really keeps us alive. That’s the key ingredient to keeping a band together—that’s the gasoline, and without it you can’t run.”
Ten years after launching with a massive splash, Chris Daughtry claims that he and the band have grown the most on stage, and that it’s altered his whole sense of his work. “When we first came out, I’d only known what I’d seen,” he says. “I didn’t know how to be vulnerable, with no pretense. Now it’s walk onstage and, especially in our acoustic shows, just be flat-out honest and open. It’s really helped me realize that’s actually what fans want—they want 100 percent honesty and feeling like they got to know you better.”