When Tyler Farr performs Saturday at Bayou Country Superfest, he’ll have a new No. 1 song to sing.
Farr’s hard-hitting heartbreak hit, “A Guy Walks Into a Bar,” claimed the No. 1 position on the Billboard Country Airplay and Mediabase Country charts this week.
“A Guy Walks Into a Bar” is the first single from the Missouri native’s second album, “Suffer In Peace.” The news about “A Guy Walks Into a Bar” follows Top 5 “Suffer In Peace” debuts on the Billboard country albums chart and all-genre Billboard 200.
On Monday, Farr drove to Nashville from his farm south of town to thank staff members at his record label, Columbia. They helped make “A Guy Walks Into a Bar” his third No. 1 song.
“It’s a pretty big deal to them and to me,” he said. “That’s my third No. 1 in a row.”
In recent days, Farr and his girlfriend also became engaged.
“It was harder to get my girlfriend to say ‘yes’ than it was to get to No. 1,” he said. “It’s hard to take it all in, but I’m very blessed.”
The high Billboard 200 chart debut for “Suffer In Peace” makes Farr the only solo male country artist in the past decade whose first two albums debuted in the Top 5.
“It was cool to see my name at No. 4, in front of Drake,” he said.
Through the success of “A Guy Walks in a Bar” and “Suffer In Peace,” the follow-up to his 2013 hit album, “Redneck Crazy,” Farr avoided the sophomore slump.
“Because ‘Redneck Crazy’ did well, everybody got nervous about ‘Suffer In Peace’ not living up to it,” Farr said. “I never really thought about it.”
The work he’s done and things he’s learned since “Redneck Crazy,” Farr said, built his skills and confidence. That work includes touring with his friend, country star Jason Aldean, and Florida Georgia Line during last year’s “Burn It Down” tour.
“Being out on the road with Jason, I learned a lot about myself as an artist,” he said. “That’s what you gotta do. You just gotta keep playing and playing, working harder than the person behind you.
“We had a couple of hits. With those hits comes more confidence. Not arrogant confidence, but just confidence in yourself and thinking, ‘People, they’re digging what I’m doing.’ That allowed me to open up and just be myself. That’s what we did on ‘Suffer in Peace.’ We knew what we wanted to say and how we were gonna say it.”
No overnight sensation, Farr moved to Nashville at 21 after a breakup with his high-school sweetheart. His first job in Music City was passing out flyers for Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge on Broadway. At Tootsie’s, he later worked the door, as a bar back, a cook and a singer four to five nights a week.
Thinking he wasn’t getting anywhere, Farr later moved back to Missouri. He didn’t want to get stuck singing other people’s songs in bars.
“I wanted to sing songs I was writing,” he said.
A break came when singer-songwriter Rhett Akins phoned Farr out of the blue. Through a mutual friend, Akins heard the independent album Farr made. An established artist, Akins liked the album and wanted to work with Farr.
“I moved back to Nashville the next week,” Farr said.
Farr caught another break when country singer-rapper Colt Ford asked if he’d open shows for him and sing background and play acoustic guitar in his band. They played about 250 shows together.
“Colt believed in me from day one,” Farr said.
Farr will follow Ford’s set Saturday on the Bayou Country Superfest stage.
“I learned so much playing with Colt,” Farr said. “And he puts on one of the best live shows. He’s a super-funny guy, too. It’ll be tough having to follow that 300-pound ball of sexiness.”