PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Sports runs in the family for Hunter Hayes, but the “Wanted” singer knew early on that his position was on the stage and not on the field.
“My mom is like this USSSA Hall Of Famer. She was actually a big softball player” Hayes explains. “You would think it would have followed its way into my genetic assembly but I am the least athletic person you are ever gonna meet in your life.”
“I’ll leave that to the people that are really good at it, and we’ll just keep making the noise.”
Somehow that noise has still led him into the stadium, as Hunter Hayes prepares for a free post-game concert after this Saturday’s Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park.
“I was just the nerd” laughs Hayes as he thinks back on growing up. “I was just a total nerd that, all I ever wanted to do was make noise, make music. I’m glad that I was led to it so young. It kind of doesn’t make sense to me that I was.”
“If you look at my family there’s nothing about my history that says, ‘oh yeah he’s gonna play music’. There’s no one in my family that plays music. I didn’t really have one person that led me to it. It was just kind of the hand of God I feel like, just leading me to this career path – and leading me to it before I knew that it was gonna be a career, which I think was a blessing in itself.”
“I decided that that was going to be my life before I could talk myself out of it, and I think that was probably the biggest blessing out of all of them.”
Success hit young for Hayes, setting records and topping the country charts still in the shadow of his twentieth birthday. The five years since have been filled with ups and downs, but he has emerged confident and rejuvenated with a new string of singles, the latest being “Rescue”.
“It’s a very meaningful song to me” raves Hayes. “It’s about the people in my life who have been there for me when I needed them the most, and I wanted to put the spotlight on people who deserve it, people who are there for other people when they need them the most.”
The song’s release has been accompanied by an outpouring of stories from fans that have similar tales like “Rescue”. It’s a sentimental offering from Hayes who seems to always opt for the sincere side of country music. It stands out in a sea of today’s dominant party anthems from tailgate troubadours.
“I’m kind of the mindset that country is a big house. We have room for everybody. Authenticity is the number one rule of country music in my opinion. It always has been. I applaud anybody who sings about their own life” says Hayes. “If it’s real to you – if you live it, you breathe it, write it and sing it.”
Hear Hunter Hayes sing it this Saturday, July 29th at Citizens Bank Park after the Phillies take on the Braves.
For much more from Hunter Hayes, check out the full interview above.