Country singer Hunter Hayes returns to West Michigan Nov. 15, opening for Carrie Underwood
“I am looking forward to coming back to Grand Rapids,” Hayes said. “I love Grand Rapids; It’s like a second home for me.”
Hayes, 21, will be opening for Carrie Underwood’s “Blown Away” tour, which is making a stop on Nov. 15, to the Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids.
The tour, which is about halfway through its tour dates, is falling into place, Hayes said, stating everyone is in their routine for the show.
“This is the most orchestrated show I have ever put on,” he said. “I have got a ton of lights and a ton of production I am bringing in myself.”
The “Wanted” singer said he is a spontaneous person and it shows on stage. Although some things have to stay the same from concert to concert, Hayes said he lives in the moment and just lets things happen so there is something unique every night.
“That’s the side of the artist I paid the ticket (price) for,” Hayes said.
Although Hayes plays every instrument on his self-titled CD, concert goers will not see him playing all the instruments at the show.
“It’s not the right place to do that,” he said.
The Breaux Bridge, La., native said he made his record that way because that is how he always worked. He would write a song and watch it sit and said he was tired of not seeing them come to life. He wanted to be creative.
Hayes invested in a studio to start developing the songs himself.
“The show is not about that,” Hayes said. “I don’t consider myself to be a proper musician of all 30 instruments. (The live show) is about the music, its about the songs; It’s about singing and singing along with the folks that come.”
The newest single from his album to hit the airwaves is “Somebody’s Heartbreak,” which is currently Hayes’ favorite song to perform.
Hayes has performed at The Intersection multiple times in the past and said it’s shows like The Intersection that help him determine what the next single will be.
Obviously, he said there are people who crunch numbers that help determine the next single, along with feedback he receives from radio stations, but its ultimately the fans who pick.
“The fan reaction is my biggest gut instinct,” Hayes said.
On the record, Hayes wrote or co-wrote every song that appears, and said he gets his inspiration to write songs through his life experiences.
“I basically take what would be my Facebook status and make a song out of it,” he said. “It’s worthless to me if I haven’t gone through something that I need to talk about. That is why I write — I have something to say.”
Recently, Hayes was nominated for the Country Music Association Awards best new artist of the year.
“It’s something I take very seriously and take pride in,” Hayes said. “It’s a really great thing to be recognized by (others in the industry) in that way for that particular award is a milestone for me.”
In five years, Hayes said he would like to be headlining a tour like the “Blown Away” tour, putting on a show that takes an arena to put on.
“I want this to all be mine,” he said excitedly, as he sat in the back of the arena in Salt Lake City. “I want to be putting on a show in an arena with just as much stuff, build a show, get to do this and headline big rooms every night, and I don’t know, write music that is big enough to fill a room like this.”
Tickets for the Nov. 15 are still available.