Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley Talked Little Big Town Into Collaboration on 'Ocean' Album

Lady Antebellum's upcoming new Ocean album, out on Nov. 15, includes a collaboration with Little Big Town, on a song called "The Thing That Wrecks You." The joining of voices on the song, written by Tenille Townes, Daniel Tashian and Kate York, has been years in the making, thanks at least in part to band member Charles Kelley.

"I will say, I never gave up on this one," Kelley said to and other media. "We've been friends with them for such a long time, and had such a close relationship. We've always joked that we should do something together, because there's just so many voices. Just like everybody in Nashville, we all kind of go down to 30A [in Florida], and hang out on the beach together. And luckily, I called them on a couple of drunk nights, and I said, 'We're doing this, and I'm not going to let you give up on doing this.'

"We never knew whose record it was going to be on, and finally, I think we just found a song that kind of spoke to us all," he continued. "It's a dark song. It's a very artistic song. I remember sending it to Karen and Jimmy, and they were like, 'This could be really cool.' To watch their process in the studio, it was like going to school. I mean, they're such pros."

Little Big Town likely had no idea in the beginning of their career that they were already setting an example for Lady A, as they were just getting their start.

"I remember when they had 'Boondocks' out," Kelley recounted. "It was right when we had just got started. We even even had a lot of people like, 'I don't know, it might be confusing.' Two lead singers, this weird name, and we're like, 'Look, at Little Big Town, man. They switch off vocals, and they do this whole thing, and look at Fleetwood Mac.' And so, they're one of those acts that early on, really did kind of a even pave the way for our group."

Little Big Town is the only collaboration on Ocean, but it's one that highlights the talents of all four of the members of the quartet.

"We wanted to have each one of them get to kind of have their moment," Kelley explained. "So, we're looking forward for people to hear that song. It was a master class in vocals, and [producer] Dann Huff had the fun task of putting all the different takes together. He did a wonderful job. It's a wonderful, just artistic moment over there."


Lady Antebellum's debut single from Ocean, "What If I Never Get Over You," is in the Top 15. Download the single, and pre-order Ocean at

Photo Credit: Getty / Robyn Beck