Chart Beat

Lacey Sturm Becomes First Solo Woman to Top Hard Rock Albums Chart

Lacey Sturm photographed in 2016.
Josh Sturm

Lacey Sturm photographed in 2016.

Sturm also fronted Flyleaf, the first female-led act to lead the list.

For the first time in its nearly nine-year history, Billboard's Hard Rock Albums chart welcomes a No. 1 by a solo female. Lacey Sturm, best known as the former lead singer of Texas rock band Flyleaf, debuts at No. 1 on Hard Rock Albums (dated March 5) with Life Screams, her first solo set, which starts with 9,000 sold, according to Nielsen Music.

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With her chart-topping bow, Sturm becomes the first solo female to top the tally, which began with the June 28, 2007, ranking (the first No. 1? The Smashing Pumpkins' Zeitgeist). Life Screams is also the eighth chart-topper from a female-led act, the first being (guess who?) Flyleaf's Memento Mori, in 2009.

Here's the full rundown:

Hard Rock Albums No. 1s by Female-Led Acts
Flyleaf, Memento Mori, Nov. 28, 2009
Evanescence, Evanescence, Oct. 29, 2011 (three weeks at No. 1)
Halestorm, The Strange Case Of…, April 28, 2012
In This Moment, Blood, Sept. 1, 2012
Within Temptation, Hydra, Feb. 22, 2014
The Pretty Reckless, Going to Hell, April 5, 2014
Halestorm, Into the Wild Life, May 2, 2015 (three)
Lacey Sturm, Life Screams, March 5, 2016 (one to date)

Sturm is also the 10th solo artist (joining nine males) to top the chart and the first since Slash led with World on Fire in October 2014. The other male soloists to reign: Kid Rock, Serj Tankian, Rob Zombie, Ozzy Osbourne, Bret Michaels, Jimi Hendrix, Joe Satriani and Ace Frehley.

On other Billboard charts, Life Screams opens at Nos. 7 and 8 on Alternative Albums and Top Rock Albums, respectively. It starts at No. 74 on the Billboard 200.

Life Screams is the first record Sturm has released since her departure from Flyleaf in 2012; the act has since continued with a new lead singer, Kristen May (formerly of the band Vedera, which charted the Adult Pop Songs hit "Satisfy" in 2010), and released the album Between the Stars in 2014 (a No. 1 on Alternative Albums). The band has scored hits with "I'm So Sick," "Fully Alive" and "Again," among others.

"Impossible," Sturm's lead solo single, is currently rising at rock radio, ranking at No. 29 on the Mainstream Rock Songs chart.