Avril Lavigne: Did She Ever Have a No. 1 Hit Song?
Avril Lavigne was one of the defining celebrities of the 2000s, however, not every famous musician has a No. 1 hit. Did Lavigne ever make it to the top of the chart? Here’s a look back at her career and which of her songs performed well.
The album that made Avril Lavigne famous
Firstly, some background. Lavigne began her career with the introspective album Let Go. It produced songs which reached the top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100: “Complicated,” “SK8R Boi,” and “I’m with You.” However, none of these hits reached No. 1.
The album Avril Lavigne wrote when she just wanted to have fun
Afterward, Lavigne released the album Under My Skin. This album was darker and heavier than its predecessor. It produced a single top 10 hit: “My Happy Ending.” Lavigne wouldn’t reach the top 10 until the release of her next album: The Best Damn Thing. The Best Damn Thing was more upbeat than Under My Skin.
During an interview with PopMatters, Lavigne revealed what she was thinking when she went into the studio to record The Best Damn Thing. “I went into the studio [and] I was like, ‘I’m just going to have fun!’ I wasn’t thinking, ‘OK, what are my cymbals going to be like?’ Blah blah blah. Or ‘Radio! What songs are appropriate for radio?’ I wrote a record that’s like, I’m cursing all over it and I’m totally trying new things.”
How the world reacted the ‘The Best Damn Thing’
The record produced a No. 1 hit: the catchy, aggressive pop-punk song “Girlfriend.” Lavigne revealed what she was thinking when she crafted the song. “And ‘Girlfriend?’ [That] was the last song I would’ve thought — when we were writing it — that that would’ve been my first single and been this big #1 hit across the world and it was like so … [sings] ‘I don’t like your girlfriend / I think you need a new one!’ like it was just a joke and we were like laughing and we’re like, ‘This is funny, ha ha ha.’ It’s so out there, you know what I mean? So, it’s important not to think about things.”
So did Lavigne ever make it to the summit of the Billboard Hot 100 ever again? No. However, she had hits afterward. In 2011, she released the synth-pop track “What the Hell.” “What the Hell” had some of the same ingredients as “Girlfriend”: a shouty, catchy hook, a defiant attitude, and a production credit from Dr. Luke. It only reached No. 11 on the Billboard Hot 100, proving this formula was more successful with “Girlfriend” than with “What the Hell.”
Her most successful hit after the release of “What the Hell” was a ballad called “Here’s to Never Growing Up.” Its lyrics are almost a mission statement for Lavigne’s later career, as she always held onto her youthful, playful side. Lavigne only had one No. 1 hit — but she had many other hits.