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Behind the Song: Hunter Hayes’ ‘I Want Crazy’

Hunter Hayes

Hunter Hayes (Courtesy Warner Music Nashville)

By Annie Reuter

Ask Hunter Hayes and he’ll tell you: he wants the kind of love that makes someone feel a little crazy. To him, that’s when you’ve actually gotten something right.

And that’s the sentiment behind his song “I Want Crazy,” which is nominated for Best Country Solo Performance at this year’s GRAMMY Awards. In his writing session with Lori McKenna and Troy Verges, Hayes came up with the title and just started spouting out the lyrics of the song: “I don’t want ‘good’ and I don’t want ‘good enough’/ I want ‘can’t sleep, can’t breathe without your love.'”

“There’s these moments in the right relationship where your friends look at you as if they don’t know you,” Hayes told Radio.com. “They’re just like, ‘Who are you?’ But it’s a pleasant surprise. It’s not like, ‘Dude you haven’t called me in six months, kind of surprise. It’s more like, ‘Where’s all this energy and all these laughs coming from. Who is this person?’”

Hayes said what he wants in a relationship is “probably talking a little too much on the phone, bugging everyone around you because you can’t live without this person.” And that’s precisely what he sings in the song: “I want can’t sleep, can’t breathe without your love/ Front porch and one more kiss/ It doesn’t make sense to anybody else.”

Related: Hunter Hayes Lands Third Consecutive No. 1 Single With ‘I Want Crazy’

“When you have to make adjustments to your lifestyle to figure out how to tone it down or how to incorporate all this stuff, that means you really care about this person and you want to be with them,” Hayes said. “That’s a really natural thing. I love that you have to make an adjustment at that point. That’s how real it is.”

Hayes is enjoying his second consecutive year of GRAMMY nominations, after being nominated for three categories in 2013: Best New Artist, Best Country Solo Performance for “Wanted” and Best Country Album for Hunter Hayes. While he didn’t take home any GRAMMYs, he’s hoping this year changes things.

Watch the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards on January 26 at 8 p.m. on CBS to see if Hayes takes home his first statue.

(Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) Hunter Hayes performs on stage during the 55th Grammy Awards (Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)