Hunter Easton Hayes is an American a soulful country singer, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter. The young talent can play over 30 instruments. Hunter Hayes fell in love with music at the age of two, and by four he was already on national television. Sticking to his innate passion for music and song writing, he made it to the top of the U.S. Billboard, earning the title of the youngest ever male to top the charts. He has been in public domain for years, and with every passing year he is getting better as a musician. Winner of several music awards, he hopes to inspire generations to come with his country style-music. From beginning his career in Nashville to getting globally recognised with his song ‘Wanted’, Hunter is certainly the future of country music. He performed at the White house when he was just seven. Amongst the many instruments that he plays skilfully, he managed to learn the guitar, drums, bass and keyboard himself, without any professional help. Presently he is working with the Atlantic Record Label, and has performed alongside pioneering music artists such as Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood on their tours.
Childhood & Early Life
Hunter Hayes was born on 9th September, 1991, to Lynette and Leo at Larniurg Hospital in Louisiana. His parents are of French (Cajun) origin so it was very natural for him to be brought up deeply rooted to his culture.
He is the only child of his parents. Since both his parents were working, he was raised by a nanny, who often listened to Cajun music on radio, mostly the accordionist, Aldus Roger.
When Hayes was gifted a toy accordionist by his grandmother at the age of two, he surprisingly began playing Roger’s songs on it. Realising that their son was gifted with musical intelligence, they custom made an accordion so his tiny hands could play it.
Anything that he could lay his hands on became an instrument for him. During his childhood days, his family used to spend their Friday evenings at a local restaurant where a Cajun band would perform. He joined the same band, playing instruments for them at the age of five.
By six, he had made several small appearances on both local and national television. Around this time actor Robert Duvall gifted him his first guitar; he picked up chords by himself and wrote his own songs.
When he was seven, word about his talent spread so far and wide that he was asked to perform for American President, Bill Clinton at a lawn party in the White House.
After completing high school, he moved to Nashville to establish a career in music. Since he had already garnered fame, it didn’t take him long to sign deals and begin work.
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Young Country Star
Before he was globally recognised, he was seen on television in shows such as ‘Maury’, the ‘Rosie O’Donnell Show’ and also on Nickelodeon’s ‘Figure It Out’ game show. He was also spotted in the film ‘The Apostle’.
At thirteen he performed on ‘America’s Most Talented Kids’, in which he sang and played the song ‘Hey Good Lookin’ by Hank Williams.
At Louisiana, he recorded his first album as a child artist titled ‘Through My Eyes’ in 2000. He played all the instruments for the album, wrote his own song lyrics and executed it all with his melodious voice. The album consisted of English and French songs.
He released his second independent album the next year; it had thirteen songs written by him. The album was titled ‘Make a Wish’, and he played new instruments such as bass and mandolin in the album.
After moving to Nashville he was flooded with offers from record labels. He signed on with Universal Music Publishing Group as a songwriter, and co-wrote a popular song called ‘Play’ for the American country trio, Rascal Flatts in 2010.
With a bright future ahead of him, he was immediately signed on by Atlantic Records in September 2010, and began working on his own label debut album.
Topping Music Charts
In 2011, his self-titled album’s debut single ‘Storm Warning’ hit the radio, and soon climbed the U.S music charts. Around the same time, he performed for the opening act at Taylor Swift’s ‘Speak Now Tour’.
He followed up this tour with his own radio tour, introducing songs from his debut upcoming album. He wrote all songs of the album, and replicating his childhood, he played all instruments for his songs too.
With the release of his first album, he became co-producer in association with Dann Huff. Hayes also sang a duet with Victoria Justice, reprising the 1984 hit song, ‘Almost Paradise’.
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In 2012, his song ‘Somebody’s Heartbreak’ from the combined album ‘Now That’s What I Call Music!41’ was placed as one of the top songs in music charts. The same year from January to February he toured with ‘Rascal Flatts, performing for their opening acts, and provided lyrics for the original soundtrack ‘Where We Left off’ for the 2012 film ‘Act of Valor’.
His second single ‘Wanted’ was heard on radio in 2012. His single topped the U.S. Billboard chart, and with that he became the youngest male to be ranked first on ‘Top Hot Country Songs’ - a record which was once set by Johnny Rodriquez in 1973.
Tours & Second Album
Towards the end of 2012, he was booked for Carrie Underwood’s opening performance at her ‘Blown Away Tour’, engaging more than 90 dates which packed his schedule till the end of the year.
His third single, ‘I Want Crazy’ was released in 2013. The song was placed at the second spot on the ‘Country Airplay Chart’. The same year he began working on his second album ‘Storyline’.
He announced his second album by performing a single ‘Invisible’ at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards. The album was later released in May, 2014.
His singles have continued to rank amongst the top songs in the country music charts.
Due to its phenomenal success, his album ‘Hunter Hayes’ received a double platinum by RIAA.
His debut album ‘Hunter Hayes’ was distributed in music stores in 2011; the album went on to top all music charts and earned him worldwide recognition, especially his single ‘Wanted’ for which he went on to win several awards.
After the grand success of his first album, he went on to deliver several hit singles such as ‘Somebody’s Heartbreak’, ‘Everybody’s Got Somebody But Me’ and ‘Invisible’, all making it to the U.S. Billboard music chart.
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In order to raise awareness about child hunger and starvation, he created a world record for performing at multiple cities in twenty four hours and entered the ‘Guinness World Record’.
Awards & Achievements
He is the brand ambassador for the world’s most revered guitar manufacturing brand, ‘C.F. Martin & Co.’
He was called on CBS’s ‘The Talk’ show and awarded a RIAA Gold Certification plaque for his song ‘Wanted’ in July, 2012. The following month, he was called again and awarded a Platinum Plaque for the song.
Until now he has been nominated for five Grammy awards, including ‘Best New Artist’. He also won CMT’s ‘Artist of the Year’, which is awarded to a country artist for an outstanding year in music.
In September 2012, Hayes made it to the ‘Louisiana Music Hall of Fame’. He was inducted two days before his 21st birthday and is the youngest member.
In 2013, He won the ‘Teen Choice Awards’ in the category of ‘Male Country Artist’. He took home the BMI award for ‘Award Winning Song’. He earned himself two awards at the ‘American Country Awards’ for ‘Single by a New Artist’ and ‘Music Video by a New Artist’.
Personal Life & Legacy
He has performed at several shows and concerts, yet he still gets anxious before each of his performances. He believes it enhances his performance.
Hunter is presently taking pilot lessons, and aspires to become a pilot along with his ambition of being the best country artist of his time.
He was linked with pop star Selena Gomez in 2013. However, he ridiculed the rumours saying that he had a busy schedule, with hardly any time for dating.