When Hunter Hayes and songwriter Troy Verges get in a room together to write a song, something magical happens. Proof is in the latest single from Hayes, "I Want Crazy," which the two co-wrote (with Lori McKenna) for the singer's debut self-titled album that hit stores in the fall of 2011. The tune is the fourth release from that project, and the second single in which Hayes and Verges collaborated on, the first being the chart-topping "Wanted." Roughstock recently caught up with Verges to discuss "I Want Crazy" and the day the song came to life.
"This was the first time the three of us wrote together," Verges tells Roughstock. "I don't know how long he had been there, but Hunter had just set up his little studio at [our publishing company] Universal. It was our first time writing over there. It was right as 'Wanted' was kind of taking off. I hadn't seen Hunter because he'd been on the road. There was a little bit of a celebration when we got there because the single was rockin'!
"It was a really normal writing day," continues Verges. "We came in with the little lick that is the intro of the song. We kind of had that and based the song around that. I'd gotten to know Hunter so well from writing for that last record, and I knew that he was a great guitar player, so we were trying to find a song to feature what he can do on guitar. It was just an easy write. It only took a couple of hours because the song was there. Lori was such a great presence in the room. I've always loved writing with her, and I've always been a massive fan of hers. It was a real natural, back and forth, easy day. It was more about the groove and the feel of the song for me to get rolling, then the lyrics just came. Everybody in the room was just kind of shouting stuff out. It was a rapid fire back and forth, where it feels like you're not writing it.
"Right as we finished the write, we found out that 'Wanted' had gone gold," recalls Verges. "So a couple of people from the publishing company and Hunter and I went to [Nashville restaurant] South Street to celebrate. It was really cool that we wrote this single the same day that we received the first bit of good news about 'Wanted.' It's been like riding a wave ever since. It's been cool."