Held at Third Man Records, the party showcased Hayes performing a set of songs — most of which will appear on boom. — and included personal tracks like "Halloween," which features songwriter Nicolle Galyon, and feel-good fares like the jaunty "Dollar Store."
"That's pretty crazy to imagine that I'm going to walk into a Walmart and be like 'That's my face' in the CD section," Hayes told the crowd. "That's been a dream of mine that I didn't know was going to come true, ever."
He also discussed his musical style, which is a pop-country sound that often finds the 37-year-old speak-singing raw and confessional lyrics. Hayes credited songwriter Shane McAnally, who also produced boom., for helping him shape his unique sound.
"I started writing such real stuff when a guy named Shane McAnally told me to just keep writing real stuff," Hayes explained. "Y'all know that's unheard of — most people say write you a hit, or write this, or write that...and Shane didn't say that."
"I started writing stuff that was so personal that I'm almost embarrassed sometimes to sing about what I'm singing about 'cause I feel like I'm a little bit naked," he added before segueing into his song "Beer in the Fridge," which he wrote with McAnally and writer Scot Sherrod after quitting drinking about two years ago.
Hayes finished his set with the first single from boom., "You Broke Up With Me," which he revealed was written about people who came out of the woodwork after he was dropped from a previous record contract. After he finished his performance, McAnally took the stage to share that the song had officially been certified gold.
"Where he comes from, the songs that he writes, the stories he tells have to be heard," McAnally said.0comments
boom. is set for release on Dec. 8 but can be pre-ordered right here.
Photo Credit: Rachel Deeb